Filmmaker Emmett Malloy had made his mark with a wide variety of projects, from surf films to music videos and incredible documentaries on bands like the White Stripes. Jazz, George Harrison and a couple indie rock gems all make it on his playlist. His most recent documentary project is the Big Easy Express, which is available now on iTunes.
For More: http://itunes.com/bigeasyexpress
1. Chet Baker - I Fall in Love Too Easily
2. The Magnetic Fields - No One Will Ever Love You
3. George Harrison - Apple Scruffs
4. Alexander - A Million Years
5. Kurt Vile - Jesus Fever
Jason Bentley: This is Jason Bentley from KCRW and I am here with filmmaker Emmett Malloy he made a splash with his seminal surf film "Thicker Than Water" and has since worked on a number of commercials, music videos and documentaries, including a film on former boxer Freddy Roach and the "Big Easy Express" which captures a weeklong tour by train with the bands Mumford and Sons, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, and the Old Crowe Medicine Show. We're here today to talk about some of the platters that matter in your world as part of the KCRW Guest DJ Project. So what did you bring for us?
Emmett Malloy: First up I chose Chet Baker because that’s somebody these days that gets me through everything. I just had a little kid and I'm kind of at home a lot more and I need music that will play to the masses. I find Chet Baker kind of the best thing in music I've ever heard and I feel like everything…well I just keep going back to him and I think that’s my favorite part of jazz in general, is the ease of it. I think Chet Baker just was kind of a triple threat.
Song: Chet Baker -- "I Fall In Love Too Easily"
EM: I find Chet Baker at his best when he's got a little sadness in him and certainly I have fallen in love too easily and I've been through it all, like in the sense that I got every version of a relationship, but I'm a huge fan of the sadness in love. You know, I'm not a fan of it in real life, but I like what it evokes in musicians and to me music is always really dictated by the mood I'm in. I've always enjoyed music that kind of plays to every mood and with that it need sadness. You know, happy music it kind of can do the one thing, but I like music that goes a little deeper and a little darker and certainly I think Chet Baker has a lot of demons, to say the least.
JB: We're back, that was Chet Baker "I Fall In Love Too Easily" and what do you have up for number two for us?
EM: Jeez, I'm coming out of the gates with some of the more depressing stuff but this Magnetic Fields record, it’s a four record set called “69 Love Songs”, and again this is just a record that I've spun excessively in my life. You know, on this record, it's one of the few that the female in the group sings so it really stood out to immediately because there is very little presence from her throughout 69 songs and, again, this song you can listen to and be very confused as to whether it is a love song -- a positive version of a love song or a break-up song. And that plays into what I was saying before; I like that dynamic in song writing.
Song: Magnetic Fields – "No One Will Ever Love You"
EM: I got married about a year ago and this was the song….I gave away a little seven-inch vinyl at our wedding and one song was The Cure "Just like a Dream" that Jack Johnson did for me and my little niece did together, and then the other side I had Neil Halstead from Mojave 3 and Slowdive flip this song into a positive love song because it's so close, you add a word and it's a joyous love song. As is, it's kind of a sad break-up song about kind of moving on and saying that no one will ever love you like the way I did, but I feel like I kind of wanted it to be a positive spirit and we just found a way to make it work.
JB: That was Magnetic Fields with "No One Will Ever Love You". Now your third track, what do you have?
EM: I picked a George Harrison track and this is a record I go to as much as any of The Beatles' records, which I find to be the best compliment to what he did in his solo career. I do feel like he made a solo record that felt like a Beatles record.
JB: And which album is that?
EM: That's "All Things Must Pass"
Song: George Harrison – “Apple Scruffs”
EM: The song I picked is called "Apple Scruffs" and I've come to later find out that it's about roadies and, you know, kind of picking up roadies along the way, almost like an "Almost Famous" thing. When I listened to it initially I was like 'oh, what a great love song, what a dedicated guy' and then as you kind of watch the documentary that was done recently you figure out that he kind of…well he liked the ladies.
JB: So Emmett, by roadies you mean groupies?
EM: Yeah, I just realized I really misplayed that one. I gave everybody a way different impression of George Harrison
JB: Yeah I pictured him, you know…
EM: Yeah, you're like he loved roadies, he just likes hanging out with them. Yeah, I meant groupies and I think that will make a lot more sense with the rest of what I said.
JB: George Harrison "Apple Scruffs" as selected by Emmett Malloy, he's our guest DJ on KCRW.
JB: We're back with Emmett Malloy in studio here at KCRW, he is sharing some music selections with us. What do you have next?
EM: Next is a newer song by Alex Ebert of Edward Sharpe (and the Magnetic Zeros). He did a solo record just by the name of Alexander. The song is “A Million Years” and I just like it because it made me feel like I drifted into a great Paul Simon lost record or something of that kind. I'd give it that lofty of a statement, is that it made me feel like I went back and found an old record and found a lost track that might be my favorite and never even heard of it. I just think it’s a beautiful love song and his stuff always has a real positive kind of emotional spirit and gets me revved up and makes me want to do some like preacher style dance, by myself, with a couple roadies.
JB: In the dark.
Song: Alexander – “A Million Years”
JB: That was "A Million Years" by Alexander. Well, Emmett we've come to the back of the record box here.
EM: Yes, saving the best for last.
JB: It's a small one; it's a five-record box. So your final selection, what do you have for us?
EM: Well, I have Kurt Vile and the song is "Jesus Fever" and really I could of put any Kurt Vile song on this list. He, in the last year, has been my most steady, go-to new artist. I mean, I've kind of been on a Chet Baker/Kurt Vile extravaganza. I just think Kurt Vile, to me, brought back a little bit of what I really liked about being a teenager. It was a little bit of irreverence, there's a little bit of a hesher spirit to him and I just like his swagger. We stumbled upon him in Philly one night where we were just out with some friends and they said they were going to see this guy they went to high school with Kurt Vile and we went to this crummy two-story house and I was just blown away - he never looked up, his hair was in his face the whole time and it just kind of transported me back to a different time and place, not too far ago which was the nice part about it. I just really dig him, I think he's a very talented artist and I think he's got an incredible style that spoke to me very powerfully.
Song: Kurt Vile – Jesus Fever
JB: Alright we're back with Emmett Malloy and that was Kurt Vile "Jesus Fever". Emmett, I want to thank you so much for coming through and doing this for us.
EM: Yeah, it's great to be here Jason thank you.
JB: We wish you all the best. For a complete track listing and to find these songs online go to kcrw.com/guestdjproject and subscribe to the podcast through iTunes.