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Morgan Nagler (of Whispertown 2000) Interview

Published in Blog Archive, Culture Bully. Tags: , .

Culture Bully’s Chris DeLine recently caught up with Whispertown 2000’s Morgan Nagler, the singer taking some time to address a number of questions revolving around the group’s latest release Swim. The two discussed the band’s ongoing relationship with a number of Los Angeles-based artists, including Jenny Lewis, the band’s unusual approach to booking shows, and its November tour which will include 12 shows along the West coast.

Rumor has it that you guys booked your entire Summer 2006 tour via your MySpace page. How did you do it and what lessons did you take away from that experience?

Morgan Nagler: Yes, the house party tour! Well, when we finished our first tour, opening for Jenny Lewis, we got home and were sad because we didn’t want to stop. So us and our contemporary (I don’t think I’ve ever used that word before), Michael Runion, posted on our MySpace pages, do you want us to play at your house? It was a pretty crazy process figuring and mapping it all out, but ended up an amazing experience. To go into people’s homes and really connect and play for people that want to hear. Also to make your own way in the world, and live outside the lines felt great. You can really do whatever you want, you just have to want to.

How did you approach Swim compared to Livin’ in a Dream? When you started recording the new album did Swim seem like a distant memory?

Morgan Nagler: Swim was approached very differently. On Livin’ in a Dream I played the songs and then everyone else made up parts on the spot, for the most part, and also we recorded in various locations at various times. For Swim the songs were all totally worked out and rehearsed (for the most part), and recorded in a consecutive block of time. We were much more developed as a band, and continue to morph into ourselves. Yes, Livin’ in a Dream seems like a distant memory, or dream, if you will. I’m fond of beginnings.

Livin’ in a Dream featured guest appearances by Rilo Kiley’s Jenny Lewis and Blake Sennett as well as Jonathan Rice. Did anyone outside of the band join you in the studio this time around?

Morgan Nagler: Yes, Jenny Lewis, Gillian Welch, and David Rawlings joined us in harmony on “Atlantis;” Nick White, from Tilly and the Wall, played lovely piano on “Pushing Oars;” Jason Boesel and Rawlings joined us on “Jamboree,” Rami Jaffee played organ and piano on “103″ and Jake Bellows, from Neva Dinova made vibed out contributions. Our friends are so nice, talented, funny, cool, and good looking. And smart.

Two of those names were fairly influential in your musical career. How tightly knit are you with a lot of bands in the Los Angeles area?

Morgan Nagler: We’re very tightly knit with our friends in Los Angeles, and all over the country, really. We admire and appreciate their art and kindness and support.

You’ve toured with a lot of fantastic groups including Margot & the Nuclear So and So’s, who also have a new album coming out. Are there any upcoming releases that you’re excited for?

Morgan Nagler: Well, it’s already released, but Benji Hughes A Love Extreme!

Are you making any plans for a fall tour in support of the new album? Will you be booking it by more conventional means this time around?

Morgan Nagler: Yes, we’re planning a west coast vibe early November, by slightly more conventional means. And plan to tour all year, more and more conventionally.