Music Monday: Jasper James of “In My Coma”

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Today, we’re jumping up and down and shrieking like teenage girls because we have the immensely popular Jasper James of the band “In My Coma” here to talk to you! If you haven’t heard of them, I promise that you’ll be buzzing about this band soon. Yes, they are THAT good. So here’s the blueprint: Jasper James on vocals and guitar, LauraDoll on bass and vocals, Mike Paterson on drums and percussion. What does this create? A symbiotic trio of musicians producing an amazing blend of alternative rock and Brit-Pop. Sit back, and feast your eyes on the videos, your ears on the music and your minds on Jasper James of “In My Coma”.

What is your name?

Jasper James (band: In My Coma)

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Describe your music style to our readers.

I was born in England and moved to southern Ontario when I was about 3 years old, but I grew up with English folks and even my grade school teacher was British, so I was surrounded by the accent and culture. I grew up listening to Depeche Mode, Pet Shop Boys and loads more British pop bands that my mum had blasting out our car speakers. My dad was more rock and roll though and so his love of the Beatles and the Stones came out loud and clear. And I grew up in North America during the nineties, so grunge hit me like a tonne of bricks and I loved it. So, what do you get when you combine Brit Pop and Alternative Rock? Briternative. Maybe it sounds cheesy, but I think it’s a good description of our sound and I think it’s an odd combination that’s not too common.

How and why did you become a musician? Are you full-time?

For as long as I can remember, I have been drawn to music and the different instruments used to create music. It simply catches my attention like nothing else can. The band plays full-time. We rehearse three times a week and practice new material when we’re not on tour.

What inspires you?

I’m inspired by creativity. I don’t care what the genre. Personally, I like to paint pictures or define emotions with the songs. I don’t mention the words “losing” or “sleep” in our song “Losing Sleep,” but the lyrics still give you that sense of insomnia. Ideas for songs come in different ways. I like to challenge myself as much as possible. I’ll write a song on my acoustic one night. I’ll write on my electric another night. Other times I’ll write something electronic on the computer or lay something down with the keyboard. It’s important to experiment and test your own abilities. I’ve written entire songs with only FL Studio on my old PC and in fact, we used some of those drum samples in our song “Friendly Fire.” When recording that song for the album, I challenged myself not to use a single electric guitar and low and behold, it’s the opening track on our album. Music inspires me when it’s done for the right reasons.

Describe a typical day.

Breakfast, lunch, dinner, exercise. Rehearsals typically last 2-3 hours and writing sessions usually last longer.

What are your fondest musical memories?

I’ll say one thing about each member: I’ve never been a fan of sweet treats or chocolate. I’ve never eaten a Mars bar. I’ve never eaten Skittles. There are so many candies I’ve never eaten because for some reason they don’t appeal to me. But, I am a huge cereal fan and when I say cereal, I mean kids’ cereals like Frosted Flakes and Fruit Loops. LauraDoll laughs more than anyone on the planet. And her laugh always changes. She has an array of different laugh sounds that can come out at any moment. Mike and I get a real kick out of it too and her laugh often spawns more laughter from us. Mike makes weird noises when he drums. He has this sort of upwards moving moan that happens sometimes when he’s drumming. I’m exaggerating of course, but for example, when we were tracking drums for the album, the studio engineers heard an odd sound in one of the takes and were completely puzzled by it. They were wondering what microphone was faulty. Laura and I knew that it was Mike’s grunt noise and we just laughed on the studio couch for about 2 minutes or so while the engineers tried to figure out what the hell the sound was.

What advice would you give to other musicians?

Hindsight is 20/20 and you have to move on. You’re going to make mistakes, but the important thing is to try. When I first started playing, I messed up so many aspects of the live show. I didn’t play with a tuner and so I would attempt to tune on stage, etc. It’s a maturing process and it takes time to be good at something as a group. You have to build chemistry when you’re in a band. My first piece of advice is for all guitarists and bassists: If you haven’t already, buy a silent tuner for the stage. You’ll be amazed at the difference that makes. But as far as the mistakes we’ve made, I wouldn’t change anything.

Connect with In My Coma 

We’re all over social media. There’s also a contact section on our website. Here are the sites:

Facebook

Website

YouTube

Twitter

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Our debut album, “Magnets & Miracles” is a wall of sound and a collection of a fairly diverse array of songs. We fluctuate from electronic elements to rock elements to pop elements, both between songs and within songs. The lyrical content is pretty dark, but there’s an underlying sense of hope. Our song “Dreamers” embodies the theme of the album pretty well and the main line of the chorus of that song is “I know the world can make the dreamers fade away. I wish that we could bring them back just for a day.” We didn’t hold back on this album either. We knew it didn’t make sense to release 15 tracks all at once, but we wanted to get ourselves out there in a big way. We’re really proud of the album.  And now, we’re working on our follow up and I’m very excited about the songs we have so far.

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