Artist Profile: Thaddeus Anna Greene
Thaddeus Anna Greene will soon be celebrating the release of his album, Directory of Thieves, on June 7. Thaddeus will be hosting an album release show at Bad Racket Studios, accompanied by Dave Hammer’s Power Supply and Hive Robbers. I had the pleasure of talking to Thaddeus about the recording of the album and his musical journey thus far.
At the age of 14, Thaddeus A. Green picked up a guitar and started learning. At 17, he wrote a batch of songs that would become The Directory of Thieves, recorded at Danger House Studios and mastered at Bad Racket Studios, with Matthew Augusta on the bass and Anthony Foti behind the drum kit.
The band was formed to get Greene’s songs out into the world, and he managed to pick up a pair of talented musicians in Augusta and Foti. “Me and Foti jammed together a couple times in high school. I didn’t really have a band, so I just called Foti, and Foti called Matt. I didn’t even know who Matt was before this. We jammed together just one time, and we clicked and made the record.”
Though the songs had already been written by Greene as early as the age of 17, the studio always brings surprises. “You think you have things all set up until you get into the studio and you hear stuff back. Doing overdubs you say ‘Well, let me try this’ and ‘Let me see how this will sound.’ ‘Let’s throw some extra parts in here and there.’ It was just real natural.”
While Greene’s music is largely guitar driven, lyrics come first in the songwriting process. “I’m a big film head, I love movies. Really conversational movies, like Pulp Fiction, Be Cool and Reservoir Dogs. That’s where my writing style comes from. I’ll have a bunch of concepts in my head, stories and ideas, and then I’ll write them out in lyrical form, or in poems, and then I’ll make music to the lyrics that I already wrote. Lyrics first. It’s kind of like a Jim Morrison approach to writing.”
An example on Greene’s strong and inventive writing chops comes out even in the title of the album, Directory of Thieves. “All the songs kind of chronicle going from that awkward 17 year old phase to being an early 20 adult. Instead of aging gracefully, you feel like you’re constantly being robbed of things from your childhood or things you’ve always known to be true, constantly being stolen from you. That’s what each song is about. You think you know about love, someone steals that idea away from you, you think you know about pain, someone steals that away from you, someone steals what was blissful at one point. The directory of thieves is basically keeping track of who stole what, or what was stolen.”
Thaddeus Anna Greene – “Please Let Me Be” Live at Bad Racket
Listening to his songs, you’ll probably catch on to the obvious — there’s some heavy Jimi Hendrix influence going on here. Even his equipment — Fender Strat, Fender Hot Rod Deville amp (“Everything’s dirty. No clean tones, man.”), Vox Wah, Dunlop Fuzz Face, Dunlop Octavio — all ring true to the Hendrix sound. But Thaddeus’ early influences definitely come as a surprise.
“From around ’94 to about ’98, my dad owned an indie record label, and it was nothing but gangster rap. So as a kid, all I listened to was like, Michael Jackson and Bones. And as I got older, I started to get into other shit — and I never told anyone about this, you’re one of the first people to ever hear this — I used to love, because I didn’t know shit about shit, I used to love Fall Out Boy.”
Didn’t see that coming, did you?
“…That and 80s glam metal was the reason I first picked up guitar. Like Ratt…like really bad shit, now that I know shit about music, I don’t really dig that kind of shit, but it was like Ratt, Warrant, Quiet Riot, Motley Crue. Then I got into Hendrix, that stuff kinda lead me to Hendrix. That 80s glam metal to early 2000s pop punk just lead me straight into the 60s and 70s, listening to old blues, Muddy Waters, Stevie Ray Vaughan, all that kind of shit.”
You’ll be able to hear the results of all of Thaddeus’ Greene’s work so far on June 7. He will be releasing his album Directory of Thieves, available to preorder and preview at Bandcamp. He will be performing an album release show at Bad Racket studios, and you can get tickets here, or get your tickets for FREE from Nasty Fancy.