New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Jungle

Posted by Amoebite, July 24, 2019 12:22pm | Post a Comment

Jungle - What's In My Bag? Amoeba Music

We had the pleasure of interviewing Tom McFarland and Josh Lloyd-Watson from British modern soul duo Jungle during a recent visit to Amoeba Hollywood. In our latest What's In My Bag? episode, the bandmates and longtime friends talked with us about some nostalgic favorites by Buena Vista Social Club, Jackson Browne, and Harry Nilsson, and discussed their love of edits and samples.

Tom McFarland and Josh Lloyd-Watson grew up next to each other, attended the same school, and performed together in a handful of musical projects prior to starting Jungle in 2013. Choosing to focus on the music rather than on themselves, Tom McFarland and Josh Lloyd-Watson assumed the monikers T and J, respectively. They enlisted several other band members for their live show, performing with artists across genres and art forms.

Jungle - For Ever - Amoeba Music

With the release of their 2013 debut single "The Heat," the band's career really got rolling. Jungle was nominated for BBC's Sound of 2014 prize. That same year, the group went on to perform at South By Southwest, play Reading and Leeds, take the stage at Glastonbury, and appear on both Jimmy Kimmel Live! and Later... with Jools Holland. Their self-titled debut was released in summer 2014. Since that time, Jungle has been busy performing at top festivals worldwide, appearing on late night TV, and licensing tracks to programs like Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Queen Sugar, and Superstore. Jungle's sophomore LP, For Ever, was released in fall 2018, peaking at #10 on the UK album charts and #56 on Billboard's Top Album Sales chart in the US.

McFarland and Lloyd-Watson kicked off the episode with a few albums that were important to them growing up. McFarland recalled listening to Harry Nilsson's Nilsson Schmilsson with his family in the car and how amusing it was to hear his dad loudly sing along to "Coconut." McFarland had high praise for Nilsson, saying he was "an amazing songwriter and wrote incredible pop songs, but they were so unique in their presentation." 

Lloyd-Watson also chose an album that was often heard at his childhood home, the 1997 Afro-Cuban hit record, Buena Vista Social Club. "It just always reminded me of a Saturday morning, something my parents would put on."

A new discovery for the duo came from an unexpected source: their Uber driver. Lloyd-Watson recounted how he was was playing a track for Tom in the car when the Uber driver asked if they'd heard the song "Superman Lover" by '50s blues guitarist turned '70s funky soulman Johnny Guitar Watson. Intrigued, Lloyd-Watson picked up a live Johnny Guitar Watson concert recording from Hamburg, 1976.

The duo also gravitated toward some newer releases, including the latest Earl Sweatshirt album, Some Rap Songs. "What I quite liked about this is it was kind of going back to this really tight, little, one minute thirty track lengths," Lloyd-Watson told us. He appreciated the albums "little ideas" and how it "feels like it's completely unfinished but so finished at the same time." 

But what was the first record Tom McFarland ever bought? And what was Josh Lloyd-Watson "random" pick? You'll have to watch the video below to find out!

Jungle - What's In My Bag?
Watch and comment on YouTube

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Earl Sweatshirt (20), Buena Vista Social Club (5), Harry Nilsson (6), Johnny Guitar Watson (4), Josh Lloyd-watson (1), Tom Mcfarland (1), Amoeba Hollywood (876), What's In My Bag (381), Jungle (11)