Nick Waterhouse on The Morning Mix

American singer, songwriter and producer, Nick Waterhouse, recently joined Cindy Howes of the Morning Mix to talk about his upcoming record Holly. Holly, which Waterhouse describes as “a novella or poem about a fictional protagonist,” is scheduled to be released March 4th.

Waterhouse grew up in Southern California and was heavily influenced by the R&B, soul and jazz musicians that his parents would occasionally play. They were musicians that would sometimes show up on an oldy formatted station, mixed in with classic rock records. “They were hiding in plain site. I was always sort of mystified by those things... My natural inclination was to follow my curious childlike mind and figure those out. I guess I’m still doing that,” says Waterhouse in response to his style of music.

Nick Waterhouse spent a lot of time DJing and continues to follow that passion, seeking out people who share a similar love for records. He told us that DJing has a similar feel to what performance is like as a live musician.

“...whether it’s the way you present yourself or the way you format a night, it’s all like creating a set list or making a band or flyers. It also makes you focus on songs in a different way. I think it makes me really prize songs as singles, as things to be focused on at high volumes in a club versus very esoteric close listening.”

The Tarots are an assemblage of musicians who serve as Nick Waterhouse’s backing band. Not only does Waterhouse pull influence from Ray Charles’ and Bobby Bland’s bands but he is also impacted by how jazz band combinations work together and how players interact with one another. “I believe in a slightly open ended interpretation of things, especially live, letting people blow 16 or 32 bars.”

Holly, the album to be released in the coming weeks tells the story of a dead girl and not about who killed her, but what did. Waterhouse wanted to evoke an atmosphere familiar to his own lifestyle in the east side of Los Angeles. For more information on the album and Nick Waterhouse check out his website.