Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Is He A Martian? Understanding Gary Numan.

It's only fitting to follow up the last post by providing some information on Gary Numan and giving him the recognition he deserves.

Gary Numan is the man behind the songs "Cars" and "Are Friends Electric?", the 80's synth-pop hits that helped bring electronic music into the mainstream.  He's also a somewhat mysterious man, shifting in and out of relevance. I only learned who he was through his being featured with Battles.

His early image was eerily robotic.  It was an image that perfectly fit the mystery of his music describing a world inhabited by deadly machines and electric friends...I guess you could say he was prophetic.

But as the interview below illustrates, he's an extremely humble individual and very well spoken.  It's always interesting to demystify an artist like Numan, and put them into a human context, rather than viewing them in the context of their art.  He gives some great insight into dealing with success, the burden of expectation, living up to your own standards (or not), and not being so hard on yourself.  I always like to hear an artist talk about what they do because it helps to strip away some of the fog that sometimes gets in the way of their humanity.  The points Numan makes in the interview could be applied to any artistic discipline, or anything in life for that matter.

"If someone like [Trent Reznor] (of Nine Inch Nails) who I admire enormously is saying things like that about Pleasure Principle, then maybe I should be kinder to it as well".
"I just want to love what I do on a day to day basis".

"I make the music I want to hear, cause at the moment there's not a lot of it".

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Evan Jones is a painter, drummer, and avid music lover.