|Interview with Lloyd "Bread" McDonald Of WAILING SOULS
-by Randy Cohen
Grammy Award nominated reggae band, the WAILING SOULS, channels the remarkable quality of Bob Marley, Peter Tosh and Jimmy cliff and others. The Souls with their new CD release Psychedelic Souls pays tribute to 11 psychedelic rock renditions from the late 60's which include Bob Dylan's "Like a Rolling Stone," The Who's "My Generation," the Door's "Love Her Madly," and Jimi Hendrix' "May This Be Love". These songs are the Souls newest smash as they emerge into their fall tour kick off at REGGAE IN THE PARK on Saturday, October 3rd. The heart and soul of the group was and still is Matthews and Lloyd "Bread" McDonald. They were first known as the Renegades back in 65, where they recorded singles such as "Lost Love" and "Little Dilly." And emerging out of the 70's they became the WAILING SOULS. Releasing albums such as All Over the World and Live On they rose to world recognition and presented the message of peace and untiy, especially in their homeland of Jamaica. Here is "Bread" with a few comments about their latest release.
Q: With your new album Pschadelic Souls you covered bands such as the Doors and Jimi Hendrix what was your main inspiration?
Bread: Well, we just felt it was time to pay tribute to those songs of the seventies, because we felt that those songs were great songs; because that was a period when all things started taking shape, Woodstock, and civil rights movement, and these things are evident today. I still write about these things today. We like songs with messages, and we grew up on most of these songs, and we used to sing some of these songs. When our record producer came up with this idea we were kind of ready for it.Q: Are you still staying true to your style then?
Bread: Oh yeah, you still have to stay true to your style because thats our roots and we can never leave our roots and if you still listen to - you still find the reggae beat is there. We do it in our Jamaican way. We add a little Jamaican touch here and there, and kind of make all things fresh and people who have never know these songs, would have thought that they were original songs. But these are some great songs from that period.Q: What is the main message you are sending?
Bread: Well, our main message ever since we started this message was like boy meets girl and falls in love. We always think like, coming out of a place like Jamaica, we grow around a lot of people who think about equal rights, and justice, and oppressed people all over the world. So we try to write songs reflecting world affairs, seeking out unity equality and justice. So, our message all the while is always based around peace, love, unity, and policemen.Q: So your main influences...Bob Marley and others...
Bread: Bob is one of our main influences along with other people. A lot of people who aren't even singers because you know we grew up in Jamaica, and Bob was like a big brother to us. We had all of the other spiritual people all over the community who are main influences who were always teaching us about ways of the bible, you know, and teaching us about Africa, and the equality in the world, and the oppression in the world, so we grew up getting inspiration from mainly those people.Q: I noticed that the spirituality in Reggae music is communicated to the audience, how does this feel onstage? Do you get the same effect?
Bread: Oh yes. That is one of the pros of Reggae music. People who like all types of music find that they still like Reggae. Rap people find that they like reggae, R&B people find that they like Reggae. It's just the peoples' music mon.Q: Where do you see the WAILING SOULS heading in the future?
Bread: Well, the WAILING SOULS, we always thinking positive, so wherever Jah send us we will go in whatever direction, because no matter what, we are going to be doing the work. Our work don't depend of record sales. It is just a spirituality for us, no matter what we be singing. We will always be singing no matter where Jah takes us - we are not thinking financial. We want our words to be heard by as many people as possible. And if that means we want our words to be heard by the world because any artist wants his work to be appreciated by the world, we would really like that cause we think we have a message for the world.Q: As far as your equipment goes are you still staying with the tradditional amps, and guitars?
Bread: Even if you come to Jamaica now mon, you will be surprised because Jamaica is a country. Jamaica is not so small a country because we are prominent in this world of music and also in the world of athletics and education. So if you come to Jamaica now, we have the latest stuff in technology - all the computerized stuff. So we are not just using the tradditional type of equipment. We still do a lot with the modern type of equipment like samplers, most time we don't, and some time we do, and we have the latest in equipent in keyboards and sythinsizers. You have to be current . ............Randy Cohen