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THE ALWAYS LYRICAL LIFE & PROJECTS OF SAVOR


By the age of 12 (like in this photo), Michael Caroff of Savor was not only practicing guitar, but also writing music and lyrics. And here is his interview years later talking about his upcoming projects with Love in the Lyrics! Can you give us a sneak peek of what music you'll be releasing this year? I’m actually writing for two different projects right now. One is the Latin rock band that I’ve already released one CD of original music for. The other is a newer band: a three-piece instrumental trio (guitar, bass, drums). That band is much more in the jazz and progressive rock vein than the Latin band. As to which one has finished material that’s ready for release first, your guess is as good as mine! Sometimes you go where the muse takes you. What's the concept of the project? The concept of the Latin rock project was to get into audio form the music that I had been hearing in my head, and already begun to write: guitar-based Latin music. The influences range from traditional Latin (cha-cha, salsa, merengue) to Latin jazz, and even Latin Pop and rock. The complex polyrhythms in Latin music have always fascinated me, and this is what drove me to write music and create the project to record it. Regarding the second band (the three-piece instrumental project), that came about for a different reason. I have been wanting to stretch my guitar chops for quite a while, and was looking for a way to do that. While I wasn’t intending to play so much in the jazz genre, the two guys that I ended up hooking up with are much more steeped in jazz than I. The great part is that it took me in a totally unexpected direction, which is invigorating. Do you have a checklist of why a project needs to be made? Actually, I generally do. The thing that frustrates me the most is aimless “jamming.” I don’t mind rehearsing for hours at a time, either by myself or with the band. But I want to be able to achieve something. It could be simply creating something and recording it on the spot, or it could be a longer-term goal. But either way, I like to have something I’m heading for. What is the most honest part of the music making process? That’s easy: the most honest part is criticism. If you can look at your own music with an open mind, and be willing to both consider outside input and strive to improve it on your own accord, you will always achieve a better result than if you just dig in your heels and stick with your first impression. Not surprisingly, this is a very difficult thing for many musicians to do. Music is extremely personal, and critiques of your material – especially when they come from other people – can feel like personal criticism. But art isn’t produced through some magical means; it’s sweat, blood, and sometimes tears, just like most worthwhile things in life. Is there anything that can feel forced? Absolutely. There is definitely a difference between a song that feels stilted and awkward, and one that just flows. Sometimes it comes from trying to write or release material when it really is not ready. And while it’s true that some extremely talented musicians (Prince, Elton John, Paul Simon, Mozart, et al) just seem to be able to crank out music as fast as they can write or record it, most of us have to work, work, work at it. Not only on specific songs, but over a lifetime of mastering both your instrument and your writing chops. I’m a big believer in work ethic in all endeavors; music is no exception. What would be your DREAM project to get made? Speak it into existence! If I won the lottery tomorrow – Hah! – I’d get together a number of musicians, singers, and songwriters I’ve been lucky enough to work with over the years, and spend months crafting an album that really melds all my influences. But since I don’t actually play the lottery, that would be pretty difficult . . . However, I have achieved a lot of what I want to do along the way, both with persistence and with the level of people I’ve been able to associate with. So I’ll just keep on keeping on! So many ways to connect, what's the best way for you? The best place to start is the website; from there, you can get everywhere else: https://www.savortheband.com/

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