Q&A with Asher Roth on his latest project RetroHash

Suffolk Journal: What was your inspiration behind Retro Hash? In comparison to some of your previous tunes it has a super fresh feel and seems to be spreading some massive positivity.

AR: Really nothing more than being myself.  My relationship with the Blended Babies has obviously become a close friendship over the years.  Whenever you’re creating music with your friends there is a connection and trust there.  That trust gives me the freedom to do whatever it is I’m feeling. Rich and JP (Blended Babies) would encourage me to sing through several of our sessions.  That encouragement resulted in me approaching songs a little differently throughout the recording process and helped expand on a style.  A lot of the recording took place in living rooms and bedrooms.  Very stress free and fun.  The result is an extremely fresh record that is unlike anything we’ve done before.

(Photo courtsey of Federal Prisim)

SJ: Was there any significance in choosing the four cities that were picked for this small set tour in anticipation of your April 22 release? Pennsylvania is your hometown, New York is go to, Los Angeles will be your release date, but was there any significance in coming through Boston?

AR: Yeah, I mainly just wanted to start at home.  Philadelphia is an important city to me.  I believe in the city and feel that there’s really something special happening there.  You already know New York is a must and I spent two years living in the LES so I have a lot of friends and family in the area.  I currently pay rent in Los Angeles and California has always had a place in my heart.  Cali is absolutely responsible for the vibe of this new album so we had no choice but to play the album release show there.  Boston is responsible for my favorite show ever and is a very historical city.  It was only appropriate for RetroHash to hit three major East Coast cities with so much historical context.

SJ: Songs like ‘Fast Life’ & ‘Tangerine Girl’ gave us a preview of the raw sound that may be carried on your upcoming album, do you think your sound has renewed since releases like The Greenhouse Effect  and Asleep in the Bread Aisle?

AR: It’s always going to progress.  As I grow, my music will grow.  It’s inevitable.  I never want to be creating the same thing over and over again. I never want the music making process to feel mechanical.

SJ: In 2012 Wrestling is Fake was released and a live session was conducted with Planet Rocke and was shot in a colorful scheme and in Turnip the Beet you sported a big black cowboy hat – both components seemed close to the RetroHash album cover. Do you think along with your music, that your style and expressions have matured over the years?

AR: I’ll never stop growing.  My expressions and tastes will change throughout the years and that’s all part of growing up.  It’s funny you bring up those references because I guess there were hints of what was to come before it manifested itself.  However, neither of those were conscious efforts.

SJ: Have you had any memorable shows or experiences on prior tours/performances in Boston?

AR: My most memorable show ever was the first Great Hangover show at the House of Blues Boston.  I’ll never forget riding out on that power wheel aka Blunt Cruiser and performing “Lark” on my Go Kart.  Looking around and seeing every hand in the air.  That was one of those “whoa” moments.  Highs like that are why people get addicted to drugs.  That moment is why I’m addicted to performing.