LOS ANGELES, CA - One of the hottest bands
to hit LA is CITRUS with their music playing all over town. They
can be found performing acoustically
at the Karma Coffeehouse in the heart of Hollywood and
currently every Monday on stage at the GIG. Their latest album
‘io’ are can accessed on iTunes, Cdbaby,
On Monday May 9th, Citrus will be the featured artist
on the After Show, airing on MTV.com
following the ‘Real World Road Rules Challenge (Inferno
II)’ for their music participation ‘The Real World’ and
‘Road Rules’. Maestro Arts
& Reviews correspondent Adrian Rennie snagged a few moments
with Lead Vocalist and Guitarist Jesper Andreasson to introduce
CITRUS to the Maestro Readers in our spotlight to showcase
people who not only chase their dreams, but make them a reality.
: Hey Jesper, thanks for taking some time out.
First things first, congrats on your win at the Battle of Bands
in San Diego. [4/13/05
- SDSU (San Diego State University) Montezuma Hall - Battle of
the Bands Event]
: Thank you very much....
: For the readers who aren't too familiar, would you
care to explain what that was and who was there?
: It's a
thing going on at colleges around the country, where 5 bands
compete each time against a panel of people that travel around
and judge them all. The winner of each one goes on to the
next level and so on...we were the only out of town band so I
don't think the crowd was super pleased when they announced us
as the winner. It was a pleasant surprise to be honest.
And well deserved. So who are the members of CITRUS?
is Thomas Hjorth (lead guitar), Mikkel Heimburger (bass) and
Norskov Kristensen (drums) and me on vocals and guitar.
did your group form?
: We met
just over 5 years ago here in L.A. I had placed ads in a
few papers and was going through the excruciatingly painful
process of having through sift through people calling me on the
ad. It was like trying to find true love through a
classified ad but instead of finding one, I was trying to find
three...dear god. One day Thomas called me and he
seemed like such a cool guy I didn't really care at that point
if he could even play. At that point I was pretty much
close to a nervous breakdown having to deal with people who
either couldn't play, were in it for all the wrong reasons or
more likely it was both. It was brutal. I went over
to meet Thomas and we were wearing the exact same pants, and
beyond the pants (that came out wrong) he was a really cool guy.
I knew he was the right guy before he even played me anything on
: And is
every member of your band originally from Denmark?
the lone Swede. The other three are from Denmark.
Whenever I feel outnumbered, I'm quick to mention it was Sweden
who ended up with more land after the Viking wars ended
are the audiences here compared to audiences over the seas?
is more like the U.S. is once you get out of Los Angeles to play
shows; people go out to see music. And there are less
bands so it's a bit easier to get noticed, at least early on.
can audiences find CITRUS performing, currently?
the end of April [editor note: extended through May 9th] we have
a residency at The Gig in Hollywood. Then in May we're
back doing the acoustic thing at Karma Coffeehouse also in
Hollywood. We've also been doing little tours through
Arizona, up through San Francisco, and doing some colleges.
great! How do you compare the acoustic performing to the stage
acoustic thing is great because you can't hide behind anything,
loud amps or a cranked p.a. etc. All the mistakes are
there for everybody to see and you have to bring the same
intensity as a stage show but have to rely strictly on the
music. The acoustic shows always feel really pure.
Sometimes it's a little hard to sit still when the music takes
over but it quickly makes you a much better band.
what’s your favorite song to perform?
really changes from night to night. Right now my favorite
is a new song "Potential". I also always love
playing "What A Thought." It keeps getting more
and more amazing each time we play it.
is 'Potential' about ?
yes...I usually try to say as little as possible about the
meanings of songs, not for the sake of being cryptic but I find
people are usually able to personalize songs much more if they
don't exactly know exact meanings. But, if I may be
awfully vague, I can say that it's always looking at tomorrow to
be better than today.
are your musical influences?
first thing I remember hearing music-wise as a kid was Abba. I
think it's Swedish Mandate that all kids must be exposed to a
certain number of hours of Abba before the age of 6 or the
government comes and takes your kid away (laughs). But
seriously, I remember hearing the Simon and Garfunkel song
"El Condor" being played over a TV documentary on
South America when I was maybe 5 or 6. Hearing that song
being played over the footage of the horrific poverty and
starvation was absolutely devastating. Devastating in a
good way. It's the first time I remember feeling really
sad...the song opened something inside me and that was really
the start of it all. As far as influences, I love anything
as long as it's honest. Bob Marley is a god to me, U2,
Elliott Smith, Getz/Gilberto, Sunny Day Real Estate changed
did you decide that you wanted this career as a profession?
all I've wanted to do since I started playing guitar.
There has never been an other option.
do you see yourself & Citrus in 5 years?
the world playing shows. The live thing is an amazing
thing. A good show can set you up for a few days...it's
know. Trust me, I know. What
advice or words of wisdom could you offer our readers and others
out here pursuing their dreams?
in Los Angeles, nothing makes me more sad than when I see
talented people, ones having great artistic gifts to offer the
world, giving up on it. But I guess those were never meant
to keep pushing on either. And nothing makes me happier
than when I see people keeping their talents pure and guarded at
any cost. In this town, honesty is priceless.
couldn't agree with you more. Jesper,
thanks again for taking time out. I wish you and the band Citrus
all the best.
Adrian very much.