An Introduction To Gorky TV.

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Captain’s log…GORK-1

Well, we’ve been a band for fifteen years now, though it’s really only felt like a couple. Me and Ben have been doing this for that long or maybe longer, I just know that our first show was in the fall of 2002 sometime, and it was a fundraiser for our high school Drama Club, back when Show Low High School still had one. More on that later.

There’s going to be a lot to reveal historically, I suppose, but I’d like to get down something of a history of the band thus far, through our songs. Recently I was organizing my stuff at home and found I had written over 200 songs, a bunch I can’t remember but plenty that I do. One could sit around all day waiting for something to happen, or one can put out music, so it appears I have a lot of catching up to do.

The demos I post to Gorky TV are going to be completely out of any kind of chronological order. I still have stuff I found that I’d written when I was 16, so it’s going to be a fun challenge to reinterpret those songs now that I am in my thirties. For many of them, it will be the first time anyone has heard them.

Here’s a newer one, ‘Never Leave It Alone’…

“Won’t stop ’til you curl your toes and shimmy your hips, baby…”

To me, this song sounds like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd and Prince all sat down and wrote a ballad together. It might not sound like that to you, though. It’s weird when you think of your work one way but people compare you constantly to Fall Out Boy or Pennywise or something. Everybody hears music differently.

Arranging songs into albums has always been difficult for me because I am more of a singles person. I love the format and art that comes with crafting an album, but for me, looking back at all of my work, so many songs can go together on different albums. I’d rather prefer they be arranged into playlists or something, where each song can stand out on its own.

That’s pretty much what I am going to be doing with Gorky TV, and I would like to invite you, dear listener-reader, to join us on what I hope is going to be a joyful and amazing celebration of life, art, and sound.

As a live band, Gorky thrives on the rock and roll spirit. There is no greater feeling than playing rock and roll on stage to people, but I am not one of those guys who feels that records and bands need to sound like each other. When I am recording a demo at home, or when we are in the studio, it’s 50 percent playground and 50 percent laboratory. We’re there to realize a creative vision, and when we perform that vision to a crowd of people, suddenly it becomes something else. It becomes participatory. Sometimes these genius things you conjure in the studio don’t translate as well live, or like ballads are another thing. I have dozens of these slow, emotive songs, but I can’t see Gorky playing them live to people. Sometimes they might work. It really depends on the moment, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are bad songs, or that they don’t fit on the records or aren’t good singles, it’s just that I would prefer to play something else.

It’s a good thing, then, that I’ve got 200+ some odd songs to share with you, like this one, ‘Maybe I Am (And Maybe You Are Too).’ I wrote it in Flagstaff probably June or July 2011 when I was finishing my undergrad there at Northern Arizona University, listening to a lot of Simon and Garfunkel, The Byrds, just a lot of 60s folk rock in general, but I was also still heavy into glam rock, by which I mean T. Rex, so you might hear some of that in here too.

maybe i am

“Any which way you choose I’m all about it, ’cause I know it’s gonna be alright…”

Eventually you look back at your songs and forget what your influences were, because it all becomes blended. I am aware it’s different for everyone, but I started out by mimicking all of my favorite artists, and then once you figure out what you’re doing you find your own sound that way, through all the little tricks and things you pick up. Takes a lot of work and time, but it is absolutely imperative you find your own sound. If you just copy someone else’s sound without putting yourself into it, you’re literally accepting that whatever that other artist did, your work will never be as good or original as that, and so you might as well just do what they’re doing to be successful.

Fuck all that.

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“So delicious and so boring…”

I can’t say what the timeline is going to be for my recording and releasing these songs through Gorky TV. There are also new records and singles on the way and some potential big changes not far down the road, so mostly these are going to be versions of songs I make myself, playing all of the instruments, and maybe some of them can be formed into albums. Also I am going to keep writing music indefinitely, and we are also doing more as a band. Me and the boys are fixin’ to blow the lid off soon, so sit tight.

Also, since we don’t really belong to any particular scene here in Arizona, one could consider Gorky TV to be a beacon from another world, transmitting you strange music from a far away place, because that’s exactly what it is.

Anyway, I guess I could write forever, so I will leave you with ‘My Big Bad Blues.’ This song is part of the soundtrack to a film I am currently writing the screenplay for. That will be happening and I am very excited for it. In the meantime, please subscribe to Gorky TV and navigate your way through the Gorkweb!

Thanks for reading, Gorkheads. Until next time…

Jes
11 June 2017

my big bad blues

For already-officially released stuff, please visit the GORKY Bandcamp Page

The Year Of The Gork

Hello Gorkheads

Since the release of the Gorky EP and Super Drunk video almost a year ago, we’ve released three more records, ‘High In The Low,’ ‘The Deuces,’ and now ‘Live At Last Exit.’ In addition to those, we’ve released our singles ‘She Spoke’ and ‘Dump On Trump!’…and there’s plenty more where that came from! Have you checked out GORKY TV? If not, please subscribe!

It’s also safe to say we’ve played more shows this year than probably the last few years combined, including a stint at this year’s Comic-Con for a screening of our Travis Mills-directed video for ‘Super Drunk,’ which was nominated for Best Music Video (did you know it was also included in Phoenix New Times’ Best Music Videos of 2015?)

We’d post more often on here, but I’ve been hard at work on my book about The Brian Jonestown Massacre, forthcoming from University of Hell Press. Even so, we’ve been working together on some new songs, and I’m really looking forward to getting to work on the next record. In the meantime, we will be releasing a single of ‘Jack Fool,’ our song which appears as the instrumental theme music to this year’s crime drama Durant’s Never Closes, starring Tom Sizemore, Jon Gries, Peter Bogdanovich, Michelle Stafford, and yours truly. We will also soon be announcing the details for our forthcoming 15-year anniversary compilation.

In the meantime, please keep up to date on the latest shows, releases, and news by liking/following us on FACEBOOK ! Until then, please enjoy this stream of ‘Live At Last Exit.’

Thanks y’all and much love!

-Jesse

Gorky’s ‘HIGH IN THE LOW’ Out January 14th With 4 New Songs!

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Release date: 14 January 2016

Songs:
Stone Heavy
Kick It!
No More Time
She Spoke
Asura / Bhakta
Waiting for Your Love (Hey Now!)
Roll With Me
And It Goes On
Banging on My Tambourine
10 What Do We Do When It’s Over?
11 Goodbye to Elaine
12 Motorcycle
13 Come on! Sing the Alphabet (ABC Song)
14 You’ve Got to Learn To Be Lonely

The album was previously released March 10th, 2010, and recorded from 2007-2008. As of January 14th it will be available through most digital retailers and streaming sites.

COMING FEBRUARY 2016: GORKY II: THE DEUCES.

‘Super Drunk’ Video Release + Gorky EP Pre-Order Info!

Gorky and Running Wild Films have released the music video for “Super Drunk”! A ‘Flintstones-gone wild’ type parody, “Super Drunk” is the second single from the band and their second video collaboration with director Travis Mills.

The video’s release comes the same day as the 5-song Gorky EP is available for pre-order via iTunes and Google Play!
Click the links below to pre-order the Gorky EP for $4.95 USD (taxes and fees may vary)

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Pre-Order the Gorky EP on Google Play

Pre-Order the Gorky EP on iTunes

THE GORKLAUNCH

There’s a lot going on in Gorkworld this month…first among them is THE GORKLAUNCH!

We’ve released our first demo and first two records, ‘High In The Low’ and ‘The Deuces,’ digitally on our Bandcamp. Eventually they will be released in custom stereo hi-fi on iTunes, Google Play, Amazon MP3, Tidal, and most other online retailers, but they are available now for the first-time ever directly from the source, and at a killer price! ‘First Demo/2004’ is $3 and each of the two full-lengths are $7 apiece!

Also happening this week or early next…the release of the Super Drunk Music Video! Directed by Travis Mills. Keep your eyes peeled!
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Here’s the last video we did with Mills, ‘#Datass’, which has reached over 13,000 views on YouTube and has held the #1 slot on the Running Wild channel for music videos for most of 2015, making it one of the most-watched music videos by an unsigned Arizona band this year.

And, last but not least, the GORKY EP!

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The Gorky EP will be released digitally October 21, 2015 via iTunes, Google Play, Tidal, and most other online retailers. Originally begun at Uranus of Tempe, the band had to relocate to 513 Studios after the Gin Blossoms’ Robin Wilson, who owned Uranus, kicked them out after deciding to shut Uranus down. Consequently, ‘Super Drunk’ was the last song to be recorded at the legendary studio. In addition to the singles ‘#Datass’ and ‘Super Drunk’, the Gorky EP features indie anthem ‘Braindrainer’, the 80’s-pop flavored ‘Girlfriend’, and the psychedelic hard rocker ‘Megalodon.’ More details on this release will be available soon.