Kevin Spyker has been a big part of the Jersey City music scene for the past few years. Chances are, if you've done the Studio Tour or a JC Fridays, you've heard him play -- or at least seen his name. The 29-year-old guitarist plays a sort of ambient acoustic style that's very dreamy. But at the same time, his guitar propels the songs towards their eventual ends: this isn't K-hole ambience. Spyker will be on hand tonight at Victory Hall for the latest installment of Art House Productions, and he's also got a regular Thursday night thing going (but not this Thursday) at Bar Majestic.
Day job: Design consultant for California Closets
What's the worst or most interesting thing that's happened to you at work?
Just last night I began work on a wardrobe for a former mayorial candidate in JC, who went on to be one of the lawyers for developer Lloyd Goldman of the 111 First St. nightmare. Interesting to hear the other side of the story (while biting my lip). Also rocked some closets for a local Olympic silver medalist, who was kind enough to let me wear her medal for a hot minute.
Does work ever conflict with your music?
This job requires me to be on the road, usually stuck in traffic, so it's nice to listen through demos to pass the time. Gigging late always throw me off my game the next day, but working mostly from home allows me to take a break to do these interviews!
Do you have health insurance?
Who are the three people you'd most like to have at one of your shows, in terms of helping your music career?
Andy Cabic of Vetiver, a rep from Thrill Jockey records, or Beck (after all, I came to see him).
If Wal-Mart approached you about using your music in an ad, for a large sum, would you do it? Where do you draw the line, if anywhere?
I try to avoid any ... imperial entanglements ... certainly not Wal-Mart, but considering Brazilian Girls sold out to a clever Axe cologne ad, who knows? I'd definitely bend for a film soundtrack.
Any additional thoughts on the conflicts and intersections of work and art?
It's difficult to be passionate about certain lines of work, but as for recording and performing, I'm incapable of half-assing it. I guess I always thought the music would've taken over my life by now, which might've actually swept me into an unhealthy, unstable lifestyle. I've promised never to brush music aside, though it can get rather sparse sometimes, and I start to wither. Ultimately, in the right space at the right time, I'll create my dream studio and live it every day.
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Day Job is a weekly column examining the contradictions, conflicts and convergence between work and art.