JR Bareis is an incredibly talented guitarist that joined “Love and Death” (http://www.loveanddeathmusic.com) the new band/project of Brian Head Welch, guitarist and c–founder of Korn.
Supporting the release of the new album “Between here and lost” JR answered to our questions regarding the band, the lyrics and its future projects
RYL: The new album “Between here and lost” has been released two months ago, are you happy about the success obtained so far?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: It’s been going good. I think it could have been promoted better, but I think we did pretty well with the budget we had!
RYL: Looking back have you ever imagined to be part of the same band with a legend like Brian Welch?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: Not at all! I still can’t believe it sometimes. It’s been a crazy adventure with that guy! I wouldn’t take it back for anything.
RYL: We believe in the sound of Love and Death the right word to be used is “intensity”, it is in every song……Do you agree with us? How did you create it?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: Yes definitely! Honestly, all of us in the band have different influences musically and I think when we put those together, Love And Death is what you get.
RYL: Who is writing the lyrics of the songs?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: Mostly Brian but we had some outside writers help out as well. Val and I also contributed lyrics on our newest song “Empty”.
RYL: Our favorite song is “The Abandoning”, first track of the album, what is behind its lyrics?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: I love that song so much. It’s aggressive but then it has this soft yet powerful chorus that makes you just want to burst into tears. The lyrics are about being at an all time low in life and crying out to God, pleading that he doesn’t give up on you because everyone else, including yourself, already has. It’s beautiful to me when someone hits that breaking point and turns to God for help. That’s ultimately handing your life over to Him and giving Him full control of it. That’s what “The Abandoning” means to me. We try to write our lyrics in a way that can have multiple meanings and that people can relate to.
RYL: Looking back at the time you learnt playing guitar for the first time, which was technically the major difficulty you had to overcome?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: The major difficulty for me was playing different genres. I still struggle with this, especially because we play our songs all the time and I’ve gotten comfortable with them. It’s funny because my mom has been wanting me to learn “Rolling With The Changes” by REO Speedwagon. It’s like her favorite song! I think I’m just so comfortable with what I play, I’m afraid to try and branch out. I know I can. I think it’s just laziness haha!
RYL: You recently released the video of the song “Meltdown”, it is full of sufferance… when it has been written and why?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: Well the song is obviously serious but we wanted to make the video funny because our other videos are all serious. We wanted to do something different. I think as a joke I said it would be funny to do something at a Chuck E Cheese and our bass player Val actually wrote a whole script based on that idea!
RYL: In an interview Brian Welch described the first tour the band ever did with you, he said that he had to become your legal “guardian” due to your young age at that time, did he behave J? And you?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: Yes he behaved and surprisingly, I did too! I learned a lot of the do’s and don’ts on that tour. Heck, I am still learning the do’s and don’ts now!
RYL: Which is your biggest dream musically speaking?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: Truthfully, I don’t want to be huge like Bieber or anyone like that. I just want to be able to play the music that I love and make a decent living doing so. Sadly, that’s been next to impossible for us. We’ve been scraping by for a long time but we are hoping for the best and pressing on, despite the financial struggles.
RYL: Let’s talk about another song of the album, “Empty” , do you remember how did you come up with its melody?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: We all flew to LA and had 4 days to write and record the song. 2 days went to writing and the other 2 for recording. We came up with the lyrics as we were recording the vocals. The melody just came natural to me. When I’m writing, I’m always asking myself what is something that I would want to listen to? What would make me say “Wow this song is awesome!”? That’s how I come up with the things that I do.
RYL: Do you have a dream guitar that you would like to play, but you haven’t yet?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: Actually no haha! My dream guitar was a PRS Custom 24. I am endorsed by them now and have a couple. I love them!
RYL: Which was the craziest show you have done so far, why?
Love and Death – JR Bareis: The craziest show for me would have to be when we played at a festival called Rock AM Ring in Germany. I used to watch videos on YouTube of bands playing there and the crowds were massive. Getting to see that in person and play there was an absolute trip for me!