Casey Spooner is not only a musician, but one that has expanded the wings of creativity among live shows to the level performance art. A co-founder and member of the band Fischerspooner, a band that united in 1998 and became the social fixture for all of fashion, music, and art culture in New York. Their concerts included light shows, visual spectacles, electronic ingenuity, throbbing emotional music, and elegant fashion-forward costume design.
Casey recently introduced a new body of work to New York audiences last week at Building Fashion on the High Line within the Standard hotel in New York. We stopped to ask him a few questions about his post-Fischerspooner days… and the “accidental break” that birthed his most personal work to date.
The Standard: Describe your decision to change your musical direction.
Casey Spooner: I started writing and recording songs for a producer I work with, Jeff Saltzman. He was working on an idea for himself. While we were working, he slowly stopped calling it his album and started calling it YOUR album. It was a surprise. I was working in a very unselfconscious manner. So the sound and the style were Jeff’s doing. It was refreshing to write in a very unencumbered manner and to work quickly. My work in Fischerspooner is very architectural and formal. It takes a long time to construct the entire concept that is sonic and visual. I never decided to change direction. It just happened. And it will happen again.
What is your relationship with Building Fashion?
Spilios [co-Founder of Building Fashion] did a lot of work on the Between Worlds show that was part of the Entertainment album release for Fischerspooner. He started by assisting Vanessa Walters in the dance rehearsals and slowly he became an integral part of the set design, set piece choreography, and graphic design. He understood the show from a very fundamental place, so it was very easy for him to contribute on many levels. Eventually he was performing in the show at moments. I trust his design sense implicitly, so he was busy doing tons of stuff. AND apparently I introduced Faris and Spilios?! But I don’t recall.
How would you describe your new album?
Rock, Garage, Surf, etc etc…It is a collage of several styles. Not synth-y. NOT electronic. Because I was writing so quickly and for someone else, I accidentally ended up writing more personally. I think this is the most emotional thing I may have ever made. Some songs are hard for me to sing because I feel so many things. I have such a clear and direct connection to what I am saying.
Why the departure from Fischerspooner to this solo project?
It’s not a departure. Just an accidental break. Fischerspooner is like a creative King Kong. It is bigger than me and I can’t control it. I can’t stop it.
What has been inspiring you lately?
BEING HOME!!! I have never traveled more than I have in the past 2 years. I love seeing the world, but I am staying home now and loving it. I really just want to perform in NYC for the next year. I love my family here and I divided my time between working on FS or CS or hanging out at The Performing Garage with The Wooster Group.
I am also considering spending more time in LA and I want to make a TV show. SO….that is my newest inspiration.
What are the challenges of re-invention in a city like New York?
I see no challenges. NYC is the best. You can be ANYTHING. I mean other than making $$$ in a down economy and the usual gripes about space. But I don’t care about that stuff. I need the energy and the creativity. I love the street.
Hollywood. Film and TV
Can people dance to “adult contemporary”?
I dunno. I’ve seen people try. But it’s not that kind of album to me.
Where would people listen to your music?
Download available exclusively at CaseySpooner.com