SURVIVING THE DREAM
THE LATEST NOISE INTERVIEW WITH MICAH NELSON (PARTICLE KID)
Micah Nelson, also known as Particle Kid, has been busy lately. In July alone he toured Europe backing Neil Young as a member of The Promise of the Real. Two shows brought them to Hyde Park in England and Kilkenny, Ireland on a bill with Bob Dylan performing in front of 100,000 fans. This past week he kicked off a summer tour along with The Flaming Lips and Claypool Lennon Delirium that has them traveling around the East Coast in July and August. Today he is releasing Window Rock, his fourth LP. On Window Rock, Micah takes a different approach to recording than his previous studio albums, enlisting his touring band with Tony Peluso on drums and Jeff Smith on bass to track live to tape. The nine songs on Window Rock came together in four days of live tracking and adding to it over a couple months, overdubbing cassette tape loops and additional soundscapes much like Micah had in the past. The result is a singularly focused album that asks a lot of questions and offers some clarity on about how to be your true self in today’s fucked up world. In the interview segments below we cover a wide range of topics including the process of making Window Rock, touring with Neil and what Micah learns by sharing the stage with a legend, the importance of rest, meditation and being where you need to be every day. I’m very excited to share this interview with The Latest Noise community as I think Micah offers some excellent insight on the intangibles of creating a life in music. If you like what you hear, you can see Micah as part of the Flaming Lips / Claypool Lennon tour at Asbury Park this Sunday, July 28 at the Stone Pony Summer Stage and headlining a show at Berlin in NYC on Monday night, July 29, and purchase his album here.
Micah performing with his brother’s band Lukas Nelson and the Promise of the Real on the Late Show.
Micah performing with Neil Young at Hyde Park in England.
Every day feels like a day dream
“It’s a total dreamlike state, every day feels like a day dream from when I was 15, it’s very cool, I’m very grateful.”
“I’ve been working really really hard for a long time, just making my noise and doing my thing and it’s lead me to the right places.”
I remember having this dream two years before I was playing in his band, we were in this landscape that was burned, very dry, there was a eagle and it was showing us the lay of the land. 3 or 4 years later, we are driving up to the Bridge School with him in LincVolt, and he took us on the airline highway and it’s just total nothing, dry landscape, and we saw a bald eagle and it really tripped me out. Whatever I’m doing I’m gonna stay on this tapestry, hopefully that will keep happening.
“We all have to work with what’s right in front of us the best we can, stay not only organized and prepared for what’s coming but also be as fully present as can be, so we don’t create more things to deal with, that get in the way of the future present moments.”
On PLAYING WITH Neil Young
“There’s no set list, iIt could be one of a thousand songs that we could do, if anyone has a good idea for a song at that moment we would do it. If it was any other gig , that would terrify me, but for some reason with Neil, I don’t know, he fucks up as much as well do, there’s a chaos element to his show.”
Lyric: “If you realize the truth is full of lies, it won’t be the last time in this life, go ask your elders.” from the song Hollows.
“I like revisiting songs, now in my life I’ll have a different approach to it, that will give it a different meaning.”
Micah talks about the recording process of making the album.
FLAMING LIPS and CLAYPOOL LENNON DELIRIUM TOUR
“The stage is so ridiculous, there’s a fuckton of shit, ridiculous and fantastic. We are all from the same constellation and everyone is playing great. It’s cool to get to meet Sean (Lennon)”
If you are taking yourself too seriously up there, and we don’t. But we are sincere and there’s a difference. Watching people believe in themselves and having a great time it just, even if we totally derail and have to start over it doesn’t matter cause we are all in it together. When we do nail it, it’s that much more rewarding for everyone.
The greats and how to be yourself
All these legends are doing what they like. That’s how they became timeless. My Dad (Willie Nelson) is out there doing it, writing songs all the time, he’s an inspiration to me. It never ends. There are examples of people out there doing their thing all the time.”
On staying unique and true to yourself
On finding random shit at truck stops along the tour