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3OH!3 Interview With Nathaniel Motte

Talks About 'Streets of Gold,' Working With Ke$ha, and Marina and the Diamonds


"My First Kiss" - 3OH!3 featuring Ke$ha

Courtesy Photo Finish Records

I had the opportunity to sit down and talk to Nathaniel Motte, one half of 3OH!3 as their single "My First Kiss" was enjoying strong out-of-the-box sales in early May 2010. We talked about the upcoming album Streets Of Gold and what's fun about being 3OH!3.

Bill: This morning "My First Kiss" is still sitting in the top 5 at iTunes where it's been since it first came out. Did you have any worries about coming up with a hit to lead off the new album?

Nat: Yeah, I think it's never really guaranteed that a song's going to do well. I think more than like a big hit, we just wanted to do a cool song that re-introduced our band. Hopefully in like a cool new way. I'm excited about "My First Kiss." I think it has the potential to please a lot of people and kind of blaze new trails for us.

Bill: Your video shoot for "My First Kiss" was yesterday. How did that go?

Nat: It was great. We worked with our buddy Isaac Ravishankara who did some of our earlier videos. He came up with us as a director, and now he's doing much bigger stuff. We did it with him and filmed all day and like video shoot days are, it was exhausting.

Bill: I have to ask about working with Ke$ha now that you've done two singles together. How did you connect?

Nat: We actually connected for "My First Kiss"...we wrote the song about a year and a half ago. Sean kind of wrote the main, "My first kiss went a little like this" part, and we were like, "Oh it would be cool if a girl sang that back." Kind of a call and response thing. The producer we were working with at the time knew Ke$ha, and he said, "I know this girl that would be perfect for it." She came in the studio and sang it and made a pretty good first impression.

Bill: Do you plan on working together in the future?

Nat: Yeah, we'll see. We're obviously both super busy right now. She's crazy busy, but I think the rest of our studios, that's the only feature we have. I think we want to kind of re-establish us as us. We've done a fair amount of feature stuff recently with like the Katy Perry remix that we did and some stuff, so we wanted to kinda keep going on our own path.

Bill: Everywhere I look recently your music is being identifed as "crunkcore." Is that where you would place your music?

Nat: I don't know. I think our early stuff was more into that. So a lot of the early websites, like the Wikipedia websites, started describing our music as that. Honestly, we were asked in Germany what our music was, and I came up with "Sheistpop" (laughs) as a genre. I think it would be more something in the electronic pop realm than something in the "core" realm.

Bill: Let me ask about the upcoming album Streets of Gold. Are there any surprises for your fans on the album?

Nat: I think so. I would hope so. For this album we really carved out four months entirely to write for it, and I've been working on instrumental stuff for it all along. We really had time to take all we've learned in the past couple of years and really apply it and work the songs as much as they could be worked. I think that was a luxury. Within that we've always been excited about making music that's different from song to song. There's some slower stuff on there. There's some harder, faster stuff. I don't know. I think I'm just excited there's a wide variety of things on the record and at the same time hopefully it's all tied by our aesthetic.

Bill: What does the title Streets of Gold refer to?

Nat: It's actually a track we wrote called "Streets of Gold" awhile ago. You can hear the track. It's kind of an uplifting kind of soaring track. It just had a good feel for us. The gilded path. It's just sort of an anthemic kind of thing.

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