WALK THIS WAY Juliana Hatfield

Veteran
singer-songwriter-popster goes the self-released route.

BY LAVINIA JONES WRIGHT

 

Juliana Hatfield, the veteran music biz vixen behind Blake
Babies, Some Girls and critically lauded solo records is completely unfazed by
her most recent, and most impressive, milestone: the self-release of her tenth
full-length. Titled How to Walk Away,
the album is coming out on Hatfield’s own Ye Old Records label this August, and
it features collaborations with producer Andy Chase, Psychedelic Furs’ Richard
Butler, Nada Surf’s Matthew Caws, and Jody Porter of Fountains of Wayne. BLURT
caught up with Juliana to talk about her album, her upcoming autobiography, and
how to play a really good cover.

 

A tenth record is a
huge milestone. How does it feel?

Well, the number is kind of impressive, but when I was
making the record, I wasn’t thinking about that. I just feel like I’ve been
kind of doing it steadily, and it’s just…another one.

 

What do you think the
benefits are to self-releasing?

I guess the benefits are that I don’t have to run anything
by anyone above me. I haven’t had any bad experiences with labels, I think it’s
more that when I was working with record labels – major and independent – that
I would just feel guilty if I said no to anything.

 

What made you decide
to work with Andy Chase initially?

Working with Andy meant that I wanted to make a different
kind of record, because he has a really recognizable aesthetic as a producer. I
consider my sound to be kind of raw and sloppy, and his sound is more polished
and tightly arranged. I knew working with him, this album would sound different
from my other albums.

 

What made you feel
that the timing was right to write your autobiography?

I actually started writing it about six years ago. It was
just a goal of mine to write a book. The timing was sort of an accident, but I
think it’s good for it to come out near the album. I think the book is a way
for me to explain a lot of things that I can’t explain in my music.

 

Tell me your favorite
song to cover live.

“It’s Only Rock and Roll” by the Rolling Stones. I do it in
a way that’s really mournful and pretty, because I think that the lyrics of
that song are really sad and poignant, but people really overlook them. If I could stick a pen in my heart and spill
it all over the stage, would it satisfy ya?
It’s all about pouring your
heart out in your music.

 

[Photo Courtesy Christian
Kock, via Creative Commons/Wikipedia
]

 

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