Jeff the Brotherhood Talk Touring, Day Jobs and What’s Next
Rock ’n’ roll can never die, Neil Young says, but that doesn’t mean Jeff the Brotherhood want eternal life. In what may be one of the most level-headed assessments a rocker has ever made of his own career, singer and guitarist Jake Orrall says he can see a day when he and his brother, drummer Jamin, will decide they’ve had enough.
“Neither of us wants to be doing this forever,” Orrall tells Diffuser.fm.
They’re not necessarily in a hurry to mothball the tour van, though. Jeff the Brotherhood has had a pretty good 2012: Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys produced their latest album, ‘Hypnotic Nights,’ which was their major-label debut and their first release to crack the Billboard 200 albums chart. They’ve spent much of the year on the road (and on late-night TV), bringing their fuzzed-over garage-jams to as wide an audience as they can reach.
Orrall took time on a recent day off to talk about touring, his old day jobs and what he might like to do when he’s finished rocking.
What’s the biggest difference between recording for your own label and for a major?
We actually had this record pretty much done before we had everything straight with Warner Bros. so it’ll be the next one that they’re more involved.
Will you work with an outside producer again in the future?
I think it’s really necessary when you’re recording for a major label. We knew going into it that we were going to have to up our level of professionalism and try to reach a wider audience. When you’re doing it on your own, it’s hard to see what the songs need.
Do you have specific commercial goals in mind?
We just want to make enough money to live comfortably for as long as we can, and then move on to the next thing. I don’t know that either of us really have any goals beyond that.
How does touring figure into that?
It’s pretty much the only way to make money playing in a band. You have to be out there doing it if you don’t want to have a day job.
What was the last day job you had?
I was working at a used book, CD and video game store. They brought in vinyl, too, and I was the only one working there who knew anything about it. I was actually doubling my check every week on eBay.
If you don’t want to do this forever, what do you think might be next?
I don’t know. I know I want to do more traveling, backpacking. Start a small farm, eventually. Build myself a house. Use my construction skills.
Anyplace in particular you’d like to travel?
I had a really good time going around New Zealand with my backpack. Norway. I’d love to go back there and see the fjords. Mexico. I definitely want to explore Mexico more. I’ve had some good times there.
What have been the effects for you of the growing buzz around the band?
It’s good for us, because it means more work, and more work means more money, but it can be exhausting, doing the whole press thing. That’s not really our thing; our thing is playing music. But it’s pretty neat to think that people are hearing our music.
Rock ’n’ roll is full of brothers in bands who hate each other. How’s your relationship with Jamin?
I don’t think that really starts until you really start becoming successful, you know. We get along. We’ve always gotten along. Things only get weird when the big money starts coming in.