Chatting with Colleen Green


Massachusetts native and L.A. resident Colleen Green is an inspiration to many. Known for her punk-DIY drum machine and stoner-pop, Colleen has been releasing the most relatable albums since 2010, because her planet is your planet and we all feel the same things and wanna be left alone to watch TV sometimes. Colleen returned to Cambridge this past Monday, and I was lucky enough to talk to her for a few minutes after her energy-packed and people-packed show. She talked L.A., self-recording, and her parents’ influence.

Boston Hassle: Were you involved in any music scenes when you lived in Massachusetts?

Colleen Green: Yeah, I interned for Fork In Hand Records when I was in high school. They were an old label, with like Big D and the Kids Table, it was their label. So I kinda knew those guys. I guess, I don’t know. I guess we were friends with a lot of New Hampshire bands. There were a few bands from New Hampshire that my old band would play with.

BH: Was the Colleen Green music your first time using a drum machine and recording yourself?

CG: Yes it was. I had recorded myself in the past, but friends had helped me with it, so it wasn’t just totally on my own.

BH: How did you teach yourself?

CG: Just by trying it out and experimenting and seeing what sounded good and what didn’t. And just having a lot of spare time to do that shit.

BH: When you first started releasing and performing where did you get the courage to share all of your thoughts and feelings?

CG: Well, it was actually incredibly scary, but I kind of just forced myself to do it anyway because I figured if it was something I thought was really scary but I could do it anyway then that would take away the scariness about it.

BH: How different do you think your life would be if you hadn’t moved to L.A.?

CG: Hmmm, I think it would be completely different. I don’t know. I just feel like L.A. is just such a magical place, because when I moved there good stuff started happening to me. Yeah, I think it would be completely different.

BH: Did you start working with Hardly Art as soon as you moved to L.A.?

CG: Well, I moved to L.A. in, it was like in a little less than a year. Yeah, I moved to L.A. in December of 2008. And then then I was signed to Hardly Art in.. oh no, 2009. And I was signed to Hardly Art in September of 2010. So it took like ten months. But I had also started going on tour already at that time, so I was giving a lot of people my music.

BH: Are any overlying themes of your albums conscious or do they emerge naturally? 

CG: Definitely conscious.

BH: Do you try to make concept albums? 

CG: I don’t know. I love the idea of concept albums, and there are a lot of concept albums that I really like, but I don’t know if I could do it. It seems really hard.

BH: Like a Colleen Green rock opera. 

CG: Yeah! I just don’t know what to talk about. Yeah, I guess you just have to have that inspiration to do something like that, but I don’t think I have it at this point.

BH: Why, now, did you decide to stop self-recording and move into a studio with other musicians? 

CG: I just wanted to try it out. See what would happen. Do something different, you know. I don’t know, I think it’s always good to try new things, and it was something I’d never really done before. Yeah, I just wanted to try it out.

BH: Do you think you’ll ever go back to self-recording? 

CG: Yeah! Definitely, I want to do that for my next album actually, but I’m not sure.

BH: Is there anyone who has really inspired or influenced you throughout your life? 

CG: Probably my parents. Right? Because just generally speaking they kinda like influence your personality and what your life path is gonna be.

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