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The Mac Weekly

The Student News Site of Macalester College

The Mac Weekly

The Student News Site of Macalester College

The Mac Weekly

In Interview with Greta from Gold Motel

By Mariana Roa Oliva

Last Tuesday we were invited by Greta Morgan, singer-songwriter at the helm of Gold Motel, to go see their show at the Fine Line Music Café. Gold Motel is Greta’s new project while her original band, the Hush Sound, is on an extended break. We caught up with her after the show to ask a few questions for you.

So, for how long have you been playing music?
I’ve been playing piano since I was three and I started doing it professionally when I was eighteen. I started the Hush Sound with three friends, playing for small groups of 20-30 people. Pete Wentz signed us from there. The Hush Sound has been on an extended break for about a year.

How did you decide to make music your career?
I always loved it, it’s what I was meant to do.
We noticed a lot of sixties and fifties rock influences in your music, where is that coming from?
I write a lot of my songs in California, I’m from there, so I feel like the music comes out very sunny.

So what kind of music do you find yourself bringing into your songs?
I really like a lot of 60’s rock, The Beach Boys, The Beatles, Peter, Paul and Mary and Bob Marley.

How would you describe your songwriting process?
It usually starts idea or a title or a chord progression or a lyric. The songs seem to write themselves most of the time. Actually my favorite song on the new LP, is called Steal the Moonlight. It’s a duet I wrote with Dan in few minutes on the porch.

Do you usually write songs with the other members of the band?
I used to have to finish the idea before bringing it to the rest of the band in order to make sure my vision came across. But now I really enjoy writing with someone else because it’s a lot of fun.

How much improvisation is there in your set?
Well for a shorter set like the one today we just agree on the songs beforehand and write them down and pretty much just play it through. When we practice or when we’re writing there’s a fair amount of messing around though.
So what is your training as a musician?
I took piano lessons for 16 years and when I started playing with the Hush Sound, I just tried to forget it all.

How do you see your musical style evolving in the future?
I just started learning drums and it’s a lot of fun. I’m playing with a garage band. That’s like my side project. I mean my side, side project. Gold Motel is my main focus now and I’m just gonna keep writing pop music.

And what do you write about in your songs?
Well, love, friendship, hope, jealousy, just observations of human nature.
Do you writing music as a catharsis?
I read a lot of the classic books, classic poetry and the classic movies but there’s something that can be communicated in 2 minutes in music, it’s a kind of vibrational healing that you can’t get from anything else.

Do you ever get tired of the living the life of a musician?
I always feel like writing, playing or recording but being on the road, there’s a lot of pressure. It’s a lot of work, I feel like I’m one-part truck driver and one-part mule.

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