Think Before You Type Media Interviews Minor Soul

Minor Soul

Think Before You Type recently interviewed brothers Jack and Max Wagner, who make up the musical duo, Minor Soul. We discussed their love of performing, how they got their start in music, and how they deal with negative comments online.

Think Before You Type: How did you two get your start in music and performing?

Max: So Jack started playing guitar when he was eight, and he was already writing all these songs really early on. Meanwhile, I was doing a lot of theater acting, performing around Asia in different touring shows. And when I got too old for the theater troupe I was with, I started stealing Jack’s guitar from his room, and he got annoyed at me so he decided to buy me my first guitar for Christmas. I think it was when I was thirteen.

Jack: And so I taught Max how to play some chords, and he taught himself a lot, and we decided to start playing together. And one day Max was on my computer and found all these songs I had written but kept secret because I was too shy.

Max: We put some songs up on YouTube, and we were discovered randomly by Dave Stewart of the Eurythmics, who is just a legendary producer and rock star. And he flew us out to LA and got us started in the industry. We recorded Beneath My Skin with him, and that song and music video led to everything else we have done in our career so far.

TBYT: What’s your favorite social media site?

Jack: Max and I are really into Myspace…

Max: Haha actually our favorite is Instagram. I love taking selfies.

TBYT: You just finished the Infinity Tour with AJR. What is your favorite tour memory?

Jack: The tour was so much fun, and it was a massive learning experience because it was our first ever tour. My favorite moment was in Rochester when we played our song, “Charlie Chaplin”, and the whole crowd started singing along to the anthem in the bridge of the song. That was the first time there was such a massive crowd sing-a-long to our music.

Max: I just really enjoyed being on the road with the AJR boys and also playing the encore with them — the fans really loved seeing all of us on stage together.

TBYT:  Who are your role models?

Jack: I think my role model in terms of music is John Lennon or Paul McCartney, they are the top of the pile.

Max: My role model is Gordon Ramsay.

TBYT:  What is your writing process like?

Max: It kind of depends on the song actually. Some songs Jack starts by himself, some songs I start by myself, and there are some we write completely together from start to finish.

Jack: For example, “Beneath My Skin” was a song I had written by myself, and I presented it to Max and he actually changed the end of the song and wrote the whole “Oh Oh Oh” outro part, which is the best part of the song!

TBYT: In what ways has the internet impacted your work with Minor Soul?

Max: We are really focused on building our fanbase through social media, so the internet is really important to us. We love connecting with fans around the world so easily, and we try to be really responsive and active with them.

TBYT: When you’re down, what song helps to pick up your mood?

Jack: I usually cheer myself up with some Bee Gees. “You Win Again” is my favorite.

Max: Anything by Tiesto gets me in a good mood.

TBYT: You guys were born in London, but you grew up in Hong Kong, and now you live in New York. How has living in such diverse places influenced you two as people and as musicians?

Max: We were so lucky to grow up in Hong Kong, and it has definitely made Jack and I discover a lot of wonderful things around the world. We are in love with traveling and we still try to go back home to Hong Kong once a year if we can.

Jack: And I guess as musicians we were mostly influenced by our dad, who is a massive Beatles and David Bowie fan. So for our music, it was less to do with where we grew up and more to do with the people who raised us.

TBYT:  Sometimes the internet can be a really tough place. How do you deal with negative comments on social media?

Max: We honestly don’t get too many negative comments right now which is very lucky given how harsh people on the internet can be. But when we do get something negative we just look to all the positives and remind ourselves that getting affected by the odd negative comment is not worth it at all.

Jack: We believe in what we are doing, and we also have been through so many tough experiences in the music industry that we don’t get affected by the little negative things anymore. We just focus on ourselves, and we are just so happy to be able to make music as our job!

TBYT: What do you guys have coming up for the rest of the year, and early 2015?
 
Max: Well this tour was awesome and also a lot of work, so after just getting off that we are gonna focus on promoting our music through social media and we are definitely gonna just keep working hard. If we can get on another tour as the opener that would be incredible!
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