Rasputina.com - February 10th, 1999

Q & A With Fans

Q: "How long will Agniezska be away from the band, and what can you tell us about her current replacement, Nana?"

A: Agnieska's baby is due any day (Jan. 99). She is welcome back anytime, but I bet she wants to focus on her baby for awhile. Nana is from Bordeaux, France. She is a Broadway person: you know, tap dancing, singing cellist type. She is wacky, blonde and foreign, just like Agnieszka.

Q: "Can you give specifics (dates, locations, venues) for your upcoming tour, and, keeping in mind much of your fans are under the age of 21, do you plan many all-age shows?"

A: We haven't done much touring for this record and we're sad about it. The shows we did do in October were very fun. Tour dates should be posted on our website as they come up. "Should." We love all age shows! That is the sweetest audience. Such things are arranged by booking agents. We find out much later.

Q: "When you girls entered the dead to the world tour with Marilyn Manson, it seemed the only person who felt secure in stardom was Manson himself. Did you see a drastic change in any of the band members of Manson or Rasputina? What were the best and worst things about the tour? (Side note: those of us who attended absolutely adored the shows; we hated all the losers throwing stuff, and we hope you haven't take their actions as a representation for the behavior of all youthful fans!)" -NINMANSON1@aol.com

A: Yes, you are correct: Manson is secure in stardom. Agnieszka saw a lot that was new to her; the whole U.S., the kooky Mansons, tour life, etc. It made her more existential. Melora got more introverted. The other Mansons are just living the rock and roll life. The best part was to play so often for so many people. It is a hard thing to do, but you really get good at it. The worst part was how boring and isolating it was during the day.

Q: "It seemed like you and Twiggy had a great relationship, judging from the pictures of you guys playing cello and rollerskating. What was the most interesting thing you guys did on the tour?" -NINMANSON1@aol.com

A: Twiggy is the sweetest. He is like Harpo Marx. We didn't hang out with them too much. They would call us over, but we pretended as if we didn't hear. They like strippers better anyway.

Q: "What do you do while not touring or producing an album; what are some of your non-band related interests?" -Rhaspy2567@aol.com

A: Melora likes to write stories, draw, embroider, and try to get people to take her out for sushi. Agnieszka was setting diamonds in her off-time. Nana takes dancing class and goes to France. Julia keeps what she does a secret.

Q: "If you could be any insect, which would you be and why?"

A: In "A Bug's Life" the ants were pink, because if they made them black, it would have been way too racially charged, since the movie was about oppression.

Q: "How did you decide to become a cellist?"

A: We all played since we were little girls. It was encouraged in our families. Julia studied so hard in college that she got tired of it, but then she missed it. Melora brought her cello with her to art school in New York and played in weird performance art things.

Q: "Have any of you had formal training in cello by a teacher, and if so, what was he/she like?" -leechwife7@aol.com

A: Of course we all studied with a teacher! Melora's teacher was an old man from Boston. Once a movie was being filmed across the street from his house. When Melora was going up the steps with her cello, he came running down and grabbed her, yelling "Come! They are filming a motion picture!" He called her a pickled herring if she made a mistake.

Q: "What was the most difficult thing for Rasputina as a band when just starting out?" -burgundy_wine@hotmail.com

A: When Rasputina started, it was almost impossible for Melora to sing into the microphone. She was so shy. nothing seemed hard back then. We moved all our equipment in Melora's truck, whatever, it was all fun. Problems come later!

Q: "Definition of a string quartet: 'A good violinist, a bad violinist, and a former violinist get together with someone who hates violinists to have a discussion about composers.'....have you ever thought of adding a violin or viola to the group, or if not permanently to the group, at least including them for a couple songs?" -KrodKnid@aol.com

A: It would be nice to get long high sounds from a violin. I think we have sat and played with one once or twice, but no one to stick with. One of the guys from the Buzzcocks told me that violin is the saddest instrument. Since I am well aware that the saddest instrument is the cello, I was so offended.

Q: "Do you feel you have any competition in the music industry, and what is it?" -burgundy_wine@hotmail.com

A: Someone like "Rachel's" are compared to us solely for having strings. I think we forge ahead on our own path.

Q: "What are the advantages and disadvantages of being part of the music industry?" -burgundy_wine@hotmail.com

A: The music industry is the worst invention, the biggest rip-off. We are poor and don't get enough attention from anyone. But we are so lucky to make records and play shows and make videos!!

Q: "What are your views on the state of music today?" -naeelah@mindspring.com

A: After a one minute break, we are back to interchangeable white boy bands! I can't believe it. It's like a communist country where you can only get one brand of cereal. So many things are being kept from people.

Q: "What other bands do you listen to?" -sullen_girl_2@yahoo.com

A: Cab Calloway, Andrews sisters, 16 Horsepowers, Nick Drake, Ozzy, Ween, Queen.

Q: "Chocolate or sex?" -burgundy_wine@hotmail.com

A: Each member says "sex".

Q: "Being that I am discovering the joys (and broken needles) of making corsets: do you make any of your own corsets, or are they all custom made/store bought?" -posby@aracnet.com

A: Corset-wise, we have custom and store bought. Melora is working on embroidering one, but it's taking a while. Julia and Melora unbeknowingstly bought the came corset, althought, of course Julia's was black and Melora's was not.

Q: "I notice an influence of history in your lyrics. What is it that you find so appealing about the subject, and did you enjoy history in school?" - Mortimmer@aol.com

A: I don't remember having much history in school. I have always enjoyed reading about people in the past. The fact that what is reality changes is exciting to me. I feel false and uninspired writing about modern settings. The emotions are from any time.

Q: "Can you describe the process you go through while writing a song, from notes to lyrics, beginning to end?" -foxmulder@juno.com

A: I take notes all the time. It is so upsetting when a thought is lost. I play the cello on a four track and get some themes going. I layer 3 or 4 on the four track, listen fast and slow, forward and backward 20 million times, then make verse-chorus out of it. I sing vowels sounds over it 20 millions times to make a vocal melody. Sometimes words and phrases come out of the vowel sounds. Sometimes I copy all the notes on to enveloped from hotels, and put the ones together that seem to belong together. Usually, the words come out on paper, with very little crossing out. Intros and transistions are the hardest parts.

Q: "If you could retrieve someone from the past, or from fiction, to speak with, who would it be and why?" -anatresia@yahoo.com

A: I still really want to know what Mr. E. Leon Rauis was all about. He is so beautiful, but he looks sad and complicated too. I will publish his photograph somewhere so everyone can see. Why did he have to say, "Believe me." ? Who didn't believe him, and about what? Oh, Mr. Rauis.

Q: "Which of your songs are you most pleased with?" -crimsondivine@hotmail.com

A: I like Any Old Actress a lot. And Sign of the Zodiac.

Q: "Which of your songs do you enjoy playing the most?" -crimsondivine@hotmail.com

A: I like to play Manson's Dried up, Tied up, I don't get to do really fun, balls out cello playing in shows because I have to sing most of the time.

Q: "Are there plans for a new album, and if yes: when will work start for it, and do you already have a theme in mind for it?"

A: No plans yet for new record. It will be surely different, but no one yet knows how.

Q: "Do you ever plan on releasing written music of your compositions (similar to guitar tabs, except on cello)?" -foxmulder@juno.com

A: It would be so great if every school had the sheet music for our songs. Rasputina is just not famous enough to receive so many things that you might think are automatic.

Q: "You make reference to the Smashing Pumpkins in your song 'The New Zero.' What is your opinion of the band?"

A: There are many layers of meaning to my lyrics. An interviewer dragged out a very minor layer of one song. Some of his songs are emotionally stirring. But he's so whiny sounding. And hey, I used to be a little boy.

Q: "If you made a soundtrack of your life what 10 songs would you put on it?" -naeelah@mindspring.com

A:1. Minnie the Moocher's Wedding Day - Cab Calloway, I'm In Love With My Car - Queen, River Man - Nick Drake, I Want You to Want Me - Cheap Trick, Pachelbel Canon, Jesus' Blood Never Failed Me Yet - Ganin Bryer, Iron Man - Black Sabbath, Rocket Man - Elton John, Life on Mars - David Bowie

Q: "Lastly, is there anything else you would like to tell your fans?"

A: We wish we could be playing more shows for you, esp. all-ages in tiny places. It actually costs alot of money to do, that's why it's so sporadic. We like to think that our fans are kind people who like interesting and beautiful things. Prove us right in little ways.

Write back soon! Sorry so sloppy! Love, Rasputina