Talia Keys, the lead singer of Salt Lake City jam-band Marinade, was asked a simple question, to compare her band to another one so listeners have a sense of what its music sounds like.
Her response wasn't so simple: "Janis Joplin rolled with some Zeppelin, topped with some Franti, mixed with some Marley, a pinch of Bowie, a tablespoon of Stones, some juicy mix of Pink Floyd, set aside for a couple of hours to marinate, then popped into a hot oven for four hours."
About four years ago, Keys started playing drums in the first incarnation of Marinade, which initially was an eight-piece ensemble of musical friends, but has slimmed down to a five-piece who have been playing together for almost three years. "Big thanks to those previous band members for helping this dream of mine come true," Keys said.
Keys is joined in the band by bassist James Trevino, guitarist Jimmy Lauscher, saxophonist Spencer Kellogg and percussionist Matthew Pizza.
After releasing a five-song EP called "It's Juicy" in 2010, the band has recorded a new album and will release it at a party on Wednesday, Sept. 12, at The State Room.
Keys was asked email questions about the psychedelic band's journey, its new album and how assassination can be different from just plain murder.
How did you get started in music? How did the band get started?
I personally started music at a very young age. My mom listened to really awesome music and generally had it turned up loud. At the age of 9, Santa brought me my first drum set, and it was on from there. At 16, I picked up my uncle's guitar, at 21, played the mandolin, and most recently, about four years ago, started playing drums again for Marinade. James and I played in a couple of other bands together, and when they disbanded we decided to start Marinade with Matt. It started as an eight-piece disjointed jam band with friends. The more shows we played, the more support we received, but also it made me realize that I want to take this thing seriously and try to make it.
What can we expect from your new album?
If you had heard our last album growth. If you are a new listener and have seen us live, then you are in for a treat. We recorded this album mostly live with little overdubs. So it doesn't lose that interaction and flow. We worked really hard on this record, as well as our master sound man Mike Sasich, who did the actual recording, mixing and mastering of the album. He has such a great ear and puts out quality product. The eight songs are all original material and are a very eclectic mix of rock, blues, funk and beyond.
If Gov. Mitt Romney asked you about your band, what would you say?
I would recite lyrics from our song "Con Man" to him: "You're a congressman, a businessman, an oilman, with the plan, for every man. When you stack your hand, you steal our land, 'cause you are the con man. Everyone should supply the funds, for your fun, 'cause what's done is done. We're in the red, too many dead, in over our heads 'cause you made your bed." He would probably smile and nod, and then buy a CD. Ignorance is bliss.
If President Barack Obama asked you about your band, what would you say?
I would tell him first things first, our sax player is way better than [Bill] Clinton. Then I would thank him for having one of the hardest jobs on the planet, especially following Bush. Then I would ask to throw a concert at the White House. Why not try?
What is the most memorable experience you've had in music?
Playing Desert Rocks Music Festival for the first time with my band. I've attended many music festivals, and from the crowd have wished that one day I would be up there. So when it actually happened, I was overwhelmed with joy, pride and accomplishment. That first time was just so significant for me, because it proved that with hard work, perseverance, support and talent, anything can happen. In just a few short years of playing music professionally, I have played several festivals, toured all over Utah, Colorado and Idaho, lived and played in Northern California, and played shows in Paris, France, and Zermatt, Switzerland. Not bad seeing as my first show was not too long ago.
How important does a person have to be before they are considered "assassinated" instead of just "murdered"?
I guess it depends who you ask. If you put it that way, it makes me feel like all people who are murdered should be considered assassinated. It's not a matter of importance, I feel like everyone is really important to someone. Yet I do not think that's what you're asking with this question. To me, I think people are assassinated because they pose a threat to someone else. Usually those that order the assassination are the true threat.
Do you think Emily Maynard and Utahn Jef Holm of "The Bachelorette" will stay together and get happily married?
Soaking sound in a seasoned, often acidic, liquid
What • Marinade CD release party
When • Wednesday, Sept. 12, at 8 p.m.
Where • The State Room, 638 S. State St., Salt Lake City
Tickets • $10 at thestateroom.com
With • Pour Horse, Brian Ernst
Info • First 50 tickets sold will also receive a free copy of CD