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A Musical Life: Les Easterby

Alyson Assaf

Les Easterby has recorded and performed with And Academy, The Royal Palestine and The World Palestine. With the last band he has released albums such as Everything Is Subliminal and Let’s See Star B.

“My parents and my grandparents traveled around in a gospel group called The Easterby Family. So, I was lucky enough to have instruments around the house all the time. I played the drums with the gospel band when I was a kid. I didn’t start doing stuff on my own until I was 14 when I first recorded my own project where I recorded everything. Basically just drums and bass and guitars and singing. I was 14 so it was probably more like Nirvana.

I’ll hear stuff in my head before I play it. I’ll have an idea of what I want to do. A lot of the times it doesn’t turn out the way that I hear it but it still turns out in a way that’s useable that I enjoy.

Sometimes I’ll start recording a song and I’ll have the basic parts of it but I’ll sit on the song for so long that, when I listen back to it, I’ll hear more stuff that I can add.

So, basically, the longer that I’m sitting on something and the more that I listen to it, the more ideas that I’ll have.

I used to record on a 16-track recorder and felt that if I had all these tracks I might as well fill it up. Then I realized that the more you fill it up the better it’s going to sound.”

Jedd Beaudoin is host/producer of the nationally syndicated program Strange Currency. He has also served as an arts reporter, a producer of A Musical Life and a founding member of the KMUW Movie Club. As a music journalist, his work has appeared in Pop Matters, Vox, No Depression and Keyboard Magazine.