Friday 5: Bess Rogers

Originally posted April 27, 2012

Bess Rogers is an in demand multi-instrumentalist who can be found playing with artists such as Jenny Owen Youngs and Ingrid Michaelson, but if you have not heard her music, you are missing out. I’ve been a fan of hers since randomly seeing her play at Rockwood Music Hall in New York City several years ago and I was blown away by her performance. Don’t miss her live if you get the chance.

Bess will be opening for Ingrid Michaelson at Terminal 5 in NYC on May 17th and will be at Hotel Cafe in LA in June. She will also have a video coming out soon for her song “Math and Science”. For more info and tourdates, visit www.bessrogers.com.

What’s the first song you remember hearing?

I don’t think my memory is good enough to answer that question! But if I could take a guess, I’d say it was In My Life by the Beatles. My mom used to sing that song to be as a lullaby and I always loved it. It’s remained one of my favorite songs and now I cover it on the ukulele.

You have played with a lot of great musicians but if you could form a band with any 3 musicians (living or dead), who would they be?

Oh man. I think that a band consisting of Robyn, Kate Bush and Weezer (Blue album or Pinkerton era) would produce some crazy awesome, super weird but insanely catchy music. Or on the other hand, they might all hate each other and make something horrible. But I think it would be worth a shot!

Where do you draw your inspiration from when you write songs?

Everything! There are so many things to be inspired by in this world. Sometimes it’s love, sometimes anger, sometimes evolution, the universe, quantum physics, mortality, The Real Housewives of Orange County, the list goes on and on. We all see the world in our own unique way, and I think the job of a songwriter is to express their individual perspective on life in a way that, hopefully, touches other people’s lives. That’s my goal, at least.

What’s the most embarrassing thing that ever happened on stage?

I’ve definitely forgotten how to play songs, broken strings and had to make small talk with the crowd for 20 minutes, been caught in uncontrollable fits of laughter… But none of that was really that embarrassing. I just always laugh at myself and then that way the audience is laughing with me instead of at me!

You’ve said in the past that you’re fortunate that you figured out early in life what you wanted to do. If you weren’t a musician, what would do?

My dream job, if it wasn’t music, would be to write for a comedy show. Maybe SNL or 30 Rock… something like that. I can’t imagine anything more fun that sitting around a table with a bunch of hilarious people and writing jokes. I’m sure it’s hard work too, but in my dream job fantasy it’s all fun.

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