The Lone Wolf:
Earlier during sound check when Raul Midon was under the lights he mentioned that one of them was too bright and though Raul cannot see I realized that he was going off the feeling of the heat from the bulbs. Later that night I met him for the first time. He sat across from me warming up on his acoustic guitar and from the quick glimpse I caught up close and personal it was truly something else to watch his hands move.
Empress: You are going to Europe, what do you have planned over there?
Raul Midon: Just a bunch of touring.
Empress: Is it going well so far?
Raul Midon: Yeah.
Empress: Your lyrics are very heartfelt and seem to come deep from within, especially in a song like everybody, how do you dig into that internal spot to write them?
Raul Midon: Well first of all you leave space to write and then you just try to tell the truth you know? I am always writing what I really believe in, I am not trying to write a song that’s clever. I am trying to write something that resonates with me no matter what subject it’s about.
Empress: Is there any ritual that you go through?
Raul Midon: Not really although, I think mostly when I want to write I create the space and I am going to say this time is for writing. Sometimes, and it’s not for anything else like I sit there and if it comes it comes and if it doesn’t it doesn’t, but I give it the time. Sometimes I’ll actually set a timer, for this hour I am writing that’s it.
Empress: You like to be by yourself?
Raul Midon: Oh yeah sure, you can’t write with people around. I have done collaborations that’s a different kind of thing, where you’re both sitting in a room trying to come up with stuff it can be cool too.
Empress: Mostly you’ll be in the studio when you’re by yourself? Do you like to go outdoors because in a lot of your lyrics you definitely talk about a lot of emotion with sounds and feeling.
Raul Midon: Generally the studio but outdoors can be very nice too. Out on my deck, I have a nice deck and if the weather is nice, you know, I have gotten inspiration from that, but generally in the studio.
Empress: So how long are you going to be on the road?
Raul Midon: About seven weeks.
Empress: And you have been on the road a good amount of your life?
Raul Midon: Yeah especially the last twenty to twenty-five years.
Empress: Does it feel like home even when you are travelling because you do it so much?
Raul Midon: No, not at all. I mean the road is the road because it doesn’t feel like home you’re in a different place every day. You’re always on alert for losing something or forgetting something, it’s not home in anyway.
Empress: Your guitar technique is very good how long did it take you to get comfortable?
I never feel totally comfortable I am always working at it, and you know I’m up to that point where I will never be probably totally comfortable, but I think technique gives you a certain amount of consistency from night to night and that you know your technique is going to get you through the night, but I think my technique is an on going thing and maybe it slows down a little bit as you get older in terms of the learning curve, but I don’t think it ever stops completely.
Empress: Lately in California we have had several power outages due to PG&E, during that time close to a million residents were left in darkness, is there any advice you can give to those who feel that they cannot see or are having trouble adapting without light?
Raul Midon: See I don’t know that I would feel comfortable because I don’t know what it’s like to be with light, so I think it almost would be presumptuous of me to give. It’s like, you know if I have never seen before and all of a sudden I start to see it would be like asking you to give me advice about seeing. Because I really don’t know what it’s like to be with light. Don’t be afraid to move a little slower, haha, put your hands out, touch stuff, don’t act like you can see when you can’t.
To check him out please go to http://www.raulmidon.com/