Electric company: Half Japanese

Jad Fair, guitarist and founder of post-punk outfit Half Japanese:

Xpress: If you could collaborate with any other Mountain Oasis artist, who would it be and why?
Jad Fair: I’ve recorded two albums with Daniel Johnston, and we’re planning to record again in January with Brave Combo as the backing band. I’m looking forward to it. It’s been 14 years since we last recorded together. Daniel is an amazing songwriter and performer. I’m so lucky to know him. I’m a big fan of Neutral Milk Hotel, and Sparks. It would be great if we could do something together.

What are some themes or narratives you’ve been working with recently in your music? Most of my songs are either about love or about monsters. When I was a kid I used to go to bed early on Friday and Saturday nights and then try to get up in the night to see monster movies on television. Monster movies were my favorite kind of movie.

What sounds, styles, formats or concepts are still underrepresented in electronic music? It’s easier to say what’s overrepresented. I prefer electronic music that has a human feel to it. I like being able to make music on a computer, but as much as possible, I try to stay away from a “computer sound.”

Since it’s almost Halloween, do you have a favorite spooky song? The Shaggs song, “It’s Halloween,” is my favorite. In November, Half Japanese will do some recording with Dot Wiggin [of the Shaggs]. I’m so glad she will record with us.

Do you have anything special planned for your Mountain Oasis set? Half Japanese guitarist John Sluggett lives in Asheville. It will be good to have his family and friends at the show. Playing to friends and family always gives a show a different feel.

Half Japanese performs Friday, 8:30 p.m. at the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium. More info here.

About Alli Marshall
Alli Marshall is the arts section editor at Mountain Xpress. She's lived in Asheville for more than 20 years and loves live music, visual art, fiction and friendly dogs. Alli is the winner of the 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize and the author of the novel "How to Talk to Rockstars," published by Logosophia Books. Follow me @alli_marshall

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