TYSSON are a brand new band out of New Orleans comprised of Alvin Ford Jr., Max Moran, John Michael Rouchell, Joe Shirley, and Joe Dyson Jr. TYSSON is alternative pop with hints of R&B.
Our very own Mark Wincott caught up with the guys after he emailed them after reading a feature about the New Orleans Jazz Festival (where they recently performed), he pulled up a chair, got comfy and chatted to them about New Orleans hot spots, singing dogs and why Superman is vain, here's how he got on....
Please introduce the band and your music in one sentence....
We’re TYSSON from New Orleans comprised of Alvin Ford Jr, Max Moran, and John Michael Rouchell and we play futuristic pop music a little bit alt of center steeped in R&B.
You’re called ‘TYSSON’, how did you come to settle on this name?
We thought it was a name that evoked both powerful and soft images. If you think about a guy like Mike Tyson, he’s a bad dude but if you watch him in an interview, he’s a super vulnerable cat. Another person was Tyson Beckford, on the exterior, he’s very chiseled but he works in an effeminate industry. I think that’s the balance that we’re trying to strike. Strength and vulnerability.
How and when did you all decide to join forces and make this band a full time venture?
Sometime last year, we cemented it. We’ve all been playing together in one form or fashion for a very long time. New Orleans is a small place.
You are about to play at the New Orleans Jazz Festival; explain to the readers what this means to you and what the festival is all about?
It’s pretty amazing to be playing a festival where both local culture and culture all over the world is celebrated. It’s an institution. We’re the young kids. It’ll be fun to climb the ranks.
For a tourist such as me, who will be heading to New Orleans in a few months time, name five things that this Englishman needs to check out?
Who are you looking forward to seeing during the NO Jazz Fest?
What is the best advice you ever received and who was it from?
From Dennis Herring: a little forward, a little familiar, and speak in a modern tongue
Would you rather live with a dog that sings lullabies or a gorilla that can do sign language? Explain your answer
Being that our logo is a dog, I think we’ll go with a dog that sings lullabies. John Michael owns a pug and Max owns a boxer. We’re thinking a duet between the two of them singing Peaches & Herb’s “Reunited” would at least be an internet sensation if not more.
In your opinion, what is the BEST album/record ever released and why?
If you had a chance to put together your own ‘super group’, who would be in it? (only living members please)
Pino Palladino on Bass. Bernard Purdie on Drums. Derwin “Big D” Perkins on guitar. Bernie Worrel on Keys. Prince fronting the band. D’Angelo, Bilal, Jill Scott and Erykah Badu singing harmony. You’d totally pay to see that.
You have just released singles ‘Bigger’ and ‘Lost’ (Part II) what made you choose these two tracks to release?
Those were the laboratory test. We wanted to see if we could make modern pop music with JM’s indie background, Max’s love of R&B and Jazz, and Alvin’s background in Pop, R&B, and Gospel. The real start is this EP that we just finished mixing. We’re incredibly excited about it. It’ll be out soon.
What can we expect from your future EP/Album, where is this going to be recorded and why did you choose that studio?
We recorded the drums at the Music Shed in New Orleans with our friend, Ben Lorio. We then brought our friend, Willie Donut, down to New Orleans to work on the tunes in JM’s guest bedroom. We then finished producing it ourselves at JM’s and mixed the EP at Blade Studios with Ben Lorio mixing. We love the experience of working from home. With modern technology, you can make world class records with a laptop. Because we’re learning how to produce, it made the most sense to learn in a comfortable environment.
Do you own a record that you wouldn’t like to admit you have?
Is there something you would like to tell each of the band members that you haven’t told them before?
At this point, if we don’t know something about each other, we’d all be shocked.
What classic song would you have liked to have recorded and why?
We’re just gonna keep the Prince thing going with the song, Purple Rain. It’s perfect.
What was the first gig you ever went to?
Alvin: Thomas Whitfield...My dad was playing drums
Max: Korn. Lol. We all have a past...
JM: Neville Brothers...cliche cliche
Why is it superman can deflect bullets with his chest, but when a gun is thrown at him, he ducks?
He doesn’t want to mess up his hair...He’s definitely vain.
There are many good bands and musicians out there, who would you ask the readers of musicmuso to look out for?
If you could describe your music in the form of a fictional character, who would it be?
Michael Corleone from the Godfather. Starts off unassuming but commits to something fully and completely no matter the cost.
What are your plans for 2015?
Regardless of them playing at the New Orleans Jazz Festival, they had to come up with a better reason than that for NOT taking part in our Quickfire question round....
Coffee or Iced Tea?
Coke or Pepsi?
Drum machine or the real deal?
Mac or PC?
Jennifer Lawrence or Sheridan Smith?
BB King or Slash?
CD or Vinyl?
Hulk Hogan or Stone Cold Steve Austin or CM Punk?
Car or Motorbike?
Acoustic or electric?
Shower or Bath?
Tattoos or Piercings?
Robert de Niro or Al Pacino?
God or Google?
We'd like to thank the guys for taking part in our 'Introducing' feature and we wish them every success in the future, if you can spare just a few minutes, please check out their various social media channels, they're all listed below for you, just point and click....
Interview by Mark Wincott