Friday, June 3, 2011

From William Patrick Corgan

Written to you from a not-so distant shore...

We are now in our fourth week of working on the record, aptly dubbed, for reasons too numerous to count, 'Oceania'. Luckily for all of us it rolls off the tongue easier than say Teargarden by Kaelidyscope. I have seen some professed confusion here and there about how Oceania may fit into Teargarden as a whole and my answer to that would be 'quite nicely, thank you'!

Teargarden was conceived in my head and heart as a documented journey of faith. Where it differentiates from the classic album model is that it is an attempt to capture an arc of expression as opposed to the just result of a foregone conclusion. Teargarden is about the confusion that comes from asking a very real question;, 'how do you make something work that appears to all to be broken?' 

I myself feel quite whole and happy in my life, and would love to find once again the magic within/without, without, mind you, the classic costs associated with successful rock and roll. If I once made a strong sound from a place of existential pain and self-loathing theatricality, certainly success would now be to make fantastic music from a healed heart. So 'Oceania' is that next step in my own journey to see if I can actually pull that trick off. In order for me to have taken that first step, I had to start off from a real place of inner truth. 

So a year and a half ago, drummer Mike Byrne, bassist Mark Tulin, producers Kerry Brown and Bjorn Thorsrud and I took those first glances into the void, as friends and brothers . Because I was so uncertain as to where it all went, I made no promises to myself that there would ever come the day of another Pumpkins release, much less a stage show to follow. It was for me an all-or-nothing proposition to try to pick back up the real pieces; if there were even any to pick back up. I was certainly focused in those first days  of recording on the core feeling behind what we were doing than the actual results. That is not to say I do not embrace that music, for each song is loved by me. 

This thinking would have been impossible for me 20 years ago, as success was measured for me on someone else's value system, and not my own. I was willing then to willingly submit myself to that system to get what I wanted, which was frankly to be heard. Ahh, the wonderful, vain dreams of a young man. I am lucky now to be surrounded by so much love and support in the group and in my life. Whatever comes as the result of this union is far better in my eyes now than chasing that old kind of success, for to me that type of success gained at such a high cost would no longer be success at all. 

And with that preamble, an update: So far, we have laid down the drums for 13 songs, one of which we choose to take off, so that leaves us with 12.  Until we get into finishing each one that may be the final number or less I'm guessing. This also doesn't preclude me writing a new song that would be easier to record without drums, or having to wait to cut it when Mike would come back out towards the end of the process to add backing vocals. Putting myself back into 'album thinking' as opposed to 'song at a time thinking' has pushed me to write some really strong songs that fit together as a whole. I know I am prone to grandiose hyperbole at times but I feel this is as strong a batch of Pumpkins songs as I have written for a very, very long time. These songs have come from a place that has laid long dormant within me, and quite honestly I wasn't sure I would ever come into contact with ever again. It has surprised me that that young voice is as strong as ever, and was just waiting for the perfect moment to come back and assert some authority. It has honestly taken this circuitous journey, and this wonderful band, for me to feel safe enough again to open back up with joy. 

So it's now Nicole's turn to put down all her bass parts. Because we tracked live together, Nicole has had time to really work on her parts, which are complex and at times dizzying. I am always thrilled with how she re-interprets my progressions and hands them back to me sort-of upside down. Mike did a fantastic job playing on these songs, his strongest drumming yet, as he is coming into his own style and still wrapping his head around the complex dynamic shades of SP. Because the sound of this record from a guitar standpoint with be a hazy and clear wall of loud guitars, our next few days will be focused on getting a unique bass sound that will ring through the big wall so all of Nicole's wonderful parts can be heard. I'm really excited as this record will afford some really inventive, progressive, and flat-out cool guitar stuff, hence the need for a new fuzz thanks to Devi Ever and the dusting off from the closet of some of ye' olde pedals.

I know that there are so many Smashing Pumpkins fans out there rooting for us to get this right, to make really emotional, beautiful, and epic music together. Those of you that have kept their faith in me, and opened their arms to Jeff, Nicole, and Mike have inspired us to reach just that little deeper than maybe we would left to our own devices. It is that Love that pushes us, and nothing else. 

WPC

49 comments:

Mr. P said...

Thanks Billy. Sending you light and love. Godspeed.

William Alberto Correa said...

Excellent and wise words Billy. I love the new Smashing Pumpkins, I also love the old lineup, but all have shown us that the essence persists and your music is still alive. The Smashing Pumpkins music keeps us all alive. Greetings from Cali, Colombia. God bless you.

Zevers said...

Thanks for keeping this musical journey going, Billy.. We'll be here waiting anxiously to see where it will take you and us this time =)

Peter said...

Good work,
Really looking forward to this!

MacCarth said...

I can't wait till it's out! I'm a new smashing pumpkins fan (Started with Teargarden, working my way backwards through the albums)and I'm looking forward to being on the front lines when this album hits. Good luck!

Fernando Ramires said...

That's nice! I'm really excited!

I hope you feel happymaking your music and screaming your inner voice out!

Love from Brazil.

Klaus said...

Thanks Billy for your recent informations about new album, reissues and other things. Your music will always be remembered. Hope you'll come to Poland on the next tour.

Zevers said...

William Alberto, i agree with you, completely.. This new lineup has proven they are a fantastic band on stage and the 2 songs they showed us are a auspicious promise for what they can bring us.. Billy, i admire you for being strong enough to keep showing your art and vision, besides the hype machine or whatever they call it being clearly against you right now.

Planet Swan said...

Awesome! So Happy for you Billy! I know it will be amazing.

melanie said...

So lovely to hear you describe Nicole's basswork this way.

La Sarita said...

I can't wait to buy the album, smell it, look at the artwork, press PLAY and experience the SP journey!! SO excited. And BC's positive outlook on life just makes me happier. Hurra!

Sarah Dawn said...

Thanks, Billy! I'm so excited for this... You never fail to inspire.

Ted said...

Your talk about success certainly rings true in my own life. With great anticipation I await the art that will come out of such a process. An exciting moment is upon us!

Josh said...

You have so many fans hanging on every word and sound, many of whom keep quiet and just want to enjoy the ride. Never underestimate the amount of love sent your way. Best of luck to you, Mike, and Nicole!

Linda said...

Your words, as usual, are beautiful. Thank you for sharing who you are- you've taught me so much. I can't decide which I'm looking forward to more- the album or your book...
:)

chris said...

I have a feeling 'Oceania' is going to be brilliant .. Can't wait

joanne said...

"The world breaks everyone, and afterward many are strong at the broken places."

Andre said...

This is so inspiring. Thanks for share it with us and for keep doing real music. Andre Timm, Brazil.

Val said...

Thank you Billy for taking me to those places that only you can. My twisted soul is forever grateful.

Scott said...

Look forward. Never back. The present is before you. The future in front of you. The past is only a distraction.

SP 4ever!

Andy said...

can't wait billy!

1969_Charger said...

The Smashing Pumpkins have been my alsolute favourite band since I first heard them, some 16 years ago, when I was a 15 oik. Since discovering this amazing group, I have always happily invested much time, money and love into The Smashing Pumpkins, and I honestly thank God each day for it. I am thankful that there is new music (and that we don't have to wait too long!), as well as the old music that we have cme to know and love.

It fills me with great joy to read that Billy is happy in his life, and with the band, and that they pay no attention to the sniping. If you release anything today, someone will find a way to moan. Faceless, keyboard warriors, nothing more.

Pay no heed to those who say 'Why?' Put your attention to those who agree with you, and say 'Why not?'

JP.

PS: The Smashing Pumpkins were absolutely amazing in Chile, last November. High point of the year.

The Savage Khan said...

Can't wait to hear it. Sounds like a second revolution coming. Round 2! Or is it round 12?

james said...

It's been an odd experience collecting songs from Teargarden ect.....but it's new...something the Smashing Pumpkins always bring to the table. Whatever line up Billy Corgan may have now, in the past or in the future will be fanfuckingtastic to me.The musical journey is still going strong for me Since "Siamese Dream" hearing it on a set of headphones in a dark room on an Army base.....my world opened up from there.....Billy is a man of many talents.....one is always keeping me entertained!

MM&A said...

Billy, I'll be waiting always for new Smashing Pumpkins music, as I've always been since Siamese Dream. Your music is unique and made connection with my heart.

Love, from Venezuela, Adrian.

MM&A said...

Billy, I'll be waiting always for new Smashing Pumpkins music, as I've always been since Siamese Dream. Your music is unique and made connection with my heart.

Love, from Venezuela, Adrian.

Easy Atoms said...

Good luck!

Franz said...

Thanks for relief our souls for so many times!!
Franz from Bolivia

AC said...

Excellent. Really, really, really looking forward to this. I've really enjoyed Teargarden so far and I trust in the Pumpkins that I'll enjoy this too.

Best wishes to everyone involved. Keeping my fingers crossed for some UK tour dates in the future :)

AC

Martin said...

It's unlikely that Billy and the rest of the band will find the time to read this comment, but here goes. I wish you guys the best of luck getting these new songs together - I appreciate the hard work and time you're putting into them. It's great that you've found such a pure motivation and that you have the means to channel that into recording sincere and heartfelt songs that we can all enjoy.

It's a rare and wonderful thing when you can speak from the heart, rock out and have fun. I honestly look forward to hearing the results of your efforts!

Daft Mystical Creature said...

Beautiful, we are rooting for you (always have been, always will).

jewelfish said...

Hello from Australia, in the heart of Oceania. Thanks for the update and, as always, your honesty. Sending good vibrations, love...

Steven said...

Your music saves my life every day, Billy. Can't wait to hear your new songs.

Steven said...

Billy, this message REALLY moves me. I feel so lucky to be part of your journey and I support it in every way.

You comfort me so much with the fact that you do your own thing and that I (as a fellow musician) am not the only one with this idea.

You show me that some things are not just crazy ideas, but realistic plans that are actually 'executeable'.

Thank you with whole my heart,
Steven van der Steen (The Netherlands)

Steven said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
buzlink said...

:) Can't wait to hear the new stuff. Do what makes you happy.

Earth Insight said...

Rock on...that's what I thought you were going to s say ;)

Sinister Steve said...

I'm really looking forward to hearing some new SP music!! Can't wait for this to come out!

Jon Hobbes said...

Have long felt that Billy writes things perfectly the first time --then adds, subtracts, re-works. Yet somehow it's the demos, the abandoned tracks, the original versions, the never-released, that so frequently seem to resonate the deepest.

If music from the heart means Billy has chosen to trust in his God-given talent, and to recognize/follow his innate sensibilities, then I feel certain that his best work is still to come.

wpc317673300 said...

It's great to see the art and love of music back in action. I'm super excited about the future of the music and the band. When I saw Quasar was on the track listing, I did a back flip of happiness in my heart. I know myself and so many fans are excited about all the musical happenings going on! <3

Revolution-Evolution said...

Thank your for the post! It feels that there is positive energy and a strong creative energy surrounding the band now. I am not religious, but I believe that "Oceania" will be worth the wait. ;)

sputnik said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sputnik said...

must be nuts. I work was born in 86. over the years i've spent more time considering your emotional state than I'd like to admit, starting in fourth grade when you made an eerie impression from afar. I think It was "tonight". mtv, the baby sitter figured she'd open me up my heart to the splendor that was your rock video. purity. this evening/morning after listening to soma about ten times I casually decide look up your phone number on the internet. This year I've exchange my most companions for my new job and a lover. Now the only figure I care to speak to, more than family, more than the lover, ain't it a joke. Doesn't make sense. Something heavy, there it is on my chest. call if you're curious. you wanna plant some sorrows and bend beliefs. I'm not obsessed, but i appreciate the way your voice seems to make snow fall in my mind. 2487221682. man or myth, doesn't matter, just to say hello, or goodbye. It would make the difference.

christos, detroit mi.

HardCoreResults.com said...

So excited for this release and of the fusion of the new SP! Much love Billy!

Amaranth Moonsong said...

Billy, I am so happy for you. You deserve to be happy. Can't wait to hear the new album!

Will said...

Will Jeff be playing anything on the new record or not? Didn't see him mentioned re: recording in the post...

Rachel said...

WPC and family,
love it...

Daft Mystical Creature said...

Love

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