Jeff & Jane Hudson

Jeff & Jane Hudson

  • 2005 Interview

  • with Jeff & Jane

Jeff and Jane Hudson are a duo who are still collaborating to this day. They are known for their classic minimal synth album entitled “Flesh” released in 1982. Look at their band page for more info.

  • Jeff and Jane Hudson are a duo who are still collaborating to this day. They are known for their classic minimal synth album entitled “Flesh” released in 1982. Look at their band page for more info.

    1. Are you both originally from Boston? What was the music scene like growing up there?

    Yes Boston is our home. (and we lived in NYC in the early 80’s on Broome St. We Gigged at the Mudd club, danceteria, etc.)  Boston has always had a strong music scene; from folk, rock to jazz with lot’s of clubs and great people. We had the Clash’s first american show here at the Harvard Sq. theater, we opened for them as the Rentals. I thinks the London to Boston flights were cheap so we got a first look at lot’s of European Bands; Gary Newman, U2, Front 242, and many others. Boston’s collage radio is second to none, so you can get airplay here and that helps alot!!

    2.What music or bands were most inspiring to you growing up?

    The 60’s-70’s The Beatles, Stones, Dylan, Doors, Cream, Small Faces, Airplane, Bowie. The 80’s Gary Newman, New Order, Kraftwork, Suicide, Magazine, La Peste, The Cars, Sex Pistols, Poly Styrene, Yoong Marble Giants.

    3. Did you grow up surrounded by music? Can you tell us a bit about your family backrounds and how it may have affected your music?

    Jane’s dad was a Classical pianist, Leonard Shure. and studied piano as a child. Jeff played bongos and trumpet.

    4. How did you first meet one another?

    In a loft building in South Station. We started to do performance Art together. I was a painter/conceptual artist and Jane was a poet.

    5. After The Rentals, Jeff and Jane regrouped as an all-synthesizer band.  What led to this decision?  Any particular influences?

    We played Punk Rock with pseudo Carol in the Rentals. Had a blast!!!! But when we broke up we wanted New textures and sounds so Synths were coming in and we Dove into them BIG TIME. Lot’s of knob turning, Live and on record. Daft Records in Belgium re-released a nice 20 track CD of the stuff from 1980-83. We liked Suicide, B52’s, Human League, Devo.

    6. Tell us a bit about Attack Under Attack.  Why did you choose the name and why did you decide to change it?

    I heard that if the Russians bombed us that we would bomb them and they called it Attack under Attack. So that was how we saw it. The 7 inch cover said jeff and jane prod. but people think it was a new name. I was really just a in your face name that we liked.

    7. How did you approach collaborating with one another?  Was one of you more concept oriented and the other more production oriented? If no, what were each of your roles specifically?

    Jeff did most of the drum programs and we both did the bass lines, Jane did most of the melody lines and we both sang. Both on guitar. Flesh was recorded on a 4 track and World trade was 2 track with some bouncing tracks, Special world was 24 track.

    8. What was your approach to lyric writing in the early 80’s?

    Jane wrote from a cultural and psychological standpoint. Jeff wrote from a technology and political point.

    9. “Flesh” is a great record and still sounds exciting today.  What is the story behind this release?

    We recorded it in Boston right after moving Back from NYC. We just blasted it out over a couple of months using a 4 track and tr 808, Juno 60, pro one, guitars, shure mic. It came out in a natural way. No pressure. we had complete control of everything. We recorded it in the fall of 1982 and released it in the winter of 1983. we pressed 2000 of them and have 100 left. We still get orders from Europe and it has a lasting effect on people. The fans love the record.

    10. “Special World” is a personal favorite.  Were you aiming to write any pop hits, and did you enjoy any radio airplay?

    We recorded it on 24 track with Wally Gagel on drums, he is a producer in LA now. I love his drumming. It was a little pop but it was a Special world in the world of New wave. We got lot’s of airplay along with Los Alamos.

    11. What images do you think your music conveys?  Has music influenced your video art?

    We ran our videos with our shows in the 1980’s when possible. We both love computers and video and audio are really the same thing. time based mediums that log onto your neurons.

    12. Where did Jeff and Jane tour?

    We stuck to the East Coast. All the clubs in NYC, Boston, Providence.

    13. What equipment did you use for your live shows?

    Drum machines: Roland rhythm composer, TR 808.  Synths: Sequential circuits Pro one, Moog prodigy, Roland Juno 60. Guitars: Gibson SG and Marshall 50 watt combo Amp.

    14. Do you remember any bands you enjoyed touring with?

    We played with Fad Gadget, the Contortions, Suicide, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Pil, The Mutants. We alway had a blast and played with great intensity, we liked it super loud.

    15. I noticed your interest in McLuhan.  Do you see a tie between his theory of the “Medium is the Message” and Jeff and Jane’s usage of synthesizers in creating music?

    Yes, The operations of the synths of that time determined much of our music.

    16. Jeff and Jane’s music was ahead of its time.  Do you feel an affinity with today’s generation of listeners?

    It was ahead of it’s time. We were pushing the envelope and we were lucky to come up with what we did. We took chances. It is much harder today. It has been done to death. I like the young kids but hey, a lot of it sounds the same.

    17. What are your plans or ambitions for the next couple years?

    Jeff is painting color grids and doing a little laptop techno, Jane is making video art.

    18. We noticed live listings from 2002.  Do you have plans to play more shows?

    Live is over. But when Jeff does his laptop set, Jane runs her cool videos.

    19. Do tell us what your typical day consists of!

    We get up early, Jane teaches Video at the Boston Museum School and Jeff does a Saturday Music Video class. We both love the web. We love movies and watch lot’s of TV on a giant 65” wide screen rear projection TV. Jeff cooks and Jane reads tons of books. We have been together for 30 years and still have a great time together.

    20. How do you think technology has affected music creation these days and do you welcome the changes? What do you listen to these days?

    Thank God for the technology. Bjork, Green Day, Satie.

    Thanks for the interest

    Jeff and Jane

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