I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Tiff Randol of iAMEVE on a beautiful sunny day in Los Feliz, California. Her new album, The Everything Nothing, is going to be released one single and one video at a time over the next year. The debut single, ‘Throw Me A Line’, is premiering exclusively here on HelloGiggles for you enjoyment. Tiff joined me for a game of ladder-ball during which we discussed her creative process and what her album is all about. She even let me play with her gorgeous dog, Bella.
Do you think there was a turning point in which you decided you wanted to write and do your own creative thing? To start producing your own work?
“Well since I was little I always made my own stuff. Paintings, stories, etc. I guess it was about 4 years ago that I wanted to learn how to produce because when I would play my songs on piano and sing for producers, they would automatically think “female singer-songwriter” acoustic record, which was not what I envisioned.”
Not to say that’s bad but its pretty common. And if you have more of a depth, or palette you wanted to paint with…
“Yeah, and I wasn’t sure how to convey my desire to experiment sonically and didn’t really know how to do it, so I got Pro Tools and Logic, and learned how to produce. The first thing I produced was a solo EP called Kiss Me Kiss Me, which was really fun to do. Playing around with cutting up drums and stereo miking a live kit (in an attempt to copy the Beatles), sticking my microphone out the window to get outdoor sounds, making piano sounds and re-miking them through crappy amps and weird effects pedals. Just kind of messing about. Ultimately, I love to experiment and try new things and I’ve continued to do that over the past few years on my own and with other producers to find the sound I was looking for. This first iAMEVE album is the first time in my life where I feel like it all finally makes sense.”
The way you talk about it, it sounds like it’s going to be an intricate tapestry of things that are particularly you and of you. What would you say some of those ingredients are? Your experiences, certain emotions, bits and pieces of smaller things to form a larger object…
“To me it’s a concept record. I wrote the lyrics with a story in mind that kind of parallels my life. I see things in a very whimsical and fantastical fashion, so I picture this world where the lead character Eve goes through an entire journey from self-destruction to self love. She has her heart broken and then goes through all this self destruction and then goes through these past lifetimes where she finds herself and through all of that she’s searching for her soulmate. It’s all about death, decay, rebirth and finding love – ya know – life stuff. I don’t know if that makes sense!?”
“It’s very much about her journey and mine, it kind of parallels for me moving form a place of darkness to something magical.”
How much of it is autobiographical?
“It definitely parallels a life experience for me but it’s also…Well – I like to elaborate and create stories… I might have an experience that inspires something, but the end story almost seems to have nothing to do with the original idea. There’s a lot of stuff about karma, self-transformation. That’s definitely something I feel that I’ve gone through. A lot of healing and self discovery – and making this album has been a huge part of the process.”
What do you think happens when we die?
“I don’t know. I think anyone who thinks they know the answer to that just thinks they know the answer to that. I mean, I do feel connected to the idea of reincarnation of sorts. I’ve had some past life experiences.”
“Yeah. And that’s part of what triggered writing this record. Having these memories, visions, what have you.”
Do you want to talk about that?
“[Laughs] Maybe… it’s kind of a fantastical, storied perspective of it – so maybe i’ll stick with the story part. In “Throw Me A Line” the idea is that she’s stuck in this dreary city where everything is dark and everybody’s trapped in this Orwellian type life. Then she has this vision of the world rising and the consciousness shifting.”
What are some shows, past or present, that you would want your music to be used for?
“I’m a big fan of Fringe, Vampire Diaries, True Blood, Game of Thrones – those kind of shows I love. ”
Do you think that as an artist, in any medium, that you have an obligation to influence positively younger generations?
“I definitely do. I mean, older, younger, doesn’t matter. Across the board. Everybody’s kind of on their own path, and it happens in their own time, and sometimes a person might not even have an inkling of who they are until they’re on their deathbed. So I think wherever people are that I want to try to help people by sharing my journey with them and maybe they can avoid going through some of the things i’ve been through. Ultimately every time we watch something or listen to something we’re being impacted by what it’s telling us. I think it’s really important when shows are out there, or movies, or music, or writing, that the people making those things are trying to impact the audience in a way that helps them to be more confident or to find themselves. I don’t think thats done enough.”
So, album details. When is it coming out?
“Well we’re gonna release a single every month. The first week of every month there will be a single out and we’re shooting to do a video for each one.”
Did you write everything?
“I did a lot of co-writing and worked with some amazing producers. Jim Marr and Wendy Page (Hillary Duff, Jason Reeves) produced Throw Me A Line and a number of other songs on the album. The second single launching in May is Another Day and was produced by Dan Chen (Natalie Walker). I produced a couple tracks on the record and one of the songs was produced by Bill Lefler (Gym Class Heroes, Ingrid Michaelson, Dashboard Confessional). I’m big into collaborating with people. It’s much more fun.”
Are you playing any shows soon?
“We’ll have a bunch of shows coming up following the release of the singles. TBA! We’ll announce them on the website:iamevemusic.com.”
If you play on the east side you have to let me know!
“We played The Satellite last month!”
I love old Spaceland! If you could describe the album in one word, what would that be?