This feature is taken from our Glasweek special.

Despite having origins in Edinburgh, the relationship Passion Pusher have with Glasgow ultimately results in a creative gravitation of sorts. Regularly travelling the distance between the two Scottish cities isn't an activity commonly associated with people who aren't obligated to ferry themselves up and down the M8 for work, but when creativity calls, so does travel. We interviewed the band's founder/mastermind Jim Gage to find out about their reams of material and their time on 6Music.

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First of all, how are you? Good day so far?

Ah, I'm doing very well, thank you, it's been a lovely day.


Let's get down to it, I suppose. Why are you making music?

It started off as boredom and frustration with certain things in my life but has turned into probably the biggest part of my life. Meeting new people, trying hard to write okay-sounding things, getting bands together - it's a pretty chill life.


What are your influences, and do people pick up on them?

Most of my influences in writing at the moment are my friends music (big ups my baby boy Youngstrr Joey) but I guess Pavement, Alex G, Mac DeMarco, Brazilian Money & Porches are all pretty influential in my song writing process. Yeah I think people can sort of hear it (I hope), since I usually accidentally end up ripping off parts of my favourite songs.


I was probably right in personally comparing you to Mac DeMarco, then! Do you have influences from outside of music? TV, books, films, food, locations you've visited?

I watch a lot of terrible sci-fi television shows, but I doubt that comes through in my music. I lost a good portion of my life to that show Fringe, and one show called V. I just love anything vaguely sci-fi that I can binge watch. I guess I'm just a lost boy after finishing The X Files.





[As for locations], I was really blown away when I first went to Sarajevo and Macedonia in 2013, and I wrote a couple of songs over there about the weird, laid-back coffee culture. Everyone just drinks coffee all day and chain smokes - it's wonderful.


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"It's like a big family and I'm their drunken uncle. I love it."

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Fringe is a solid show and I'd love to discuss it at a later date - but changing the subject, from the outside it seems that Glasgow's music scene primarily produces guitar bands, would you say that's true?

I guess so, but I think that's just the same for most cities. Guitars are the cheapest thing to buy to get into music and it's pretty easy to learn 3 chords and start bashing out noise with your friends. I dig the accessibility of it all.

From what I can tell, the scene seems to be incredibly DIY, is that fair to say?

Yeah, I would say the scene is pretty DIY here, it's a really great vibe around everything. Everyone's willing to help each other so this weird amazing collective and friend group has formed around musicians, artists and anyone slightly interested in music. The whole thing is crazy good and I would say pretty unique.

Would you say that the scene functions like a community, or is it a load of bands that just happen to be doing their own thing?

There's definitely a community here of bands - it's like a big family and I'm their drunken uncle. I love it.

You have 215 EPs on your Bandcamp page [as of the time of writing]. How? Why? I mean... that's just... incredible. Where do you find the time to write that amount of music?

Ha, yeah, there are a lot of my EPs on Bandcamp. I've calmed down lately since I've actually picked up a social life now, but when I first started I was in a pretty bad place mentally, so I just sat in my room with tons of wine and wouldn't leave for days. I'd end up putting out like 5 EPs a day. I guess I used to think the shotgun-buckshot approach was good: record enough stuff and one thing from it's bound to be slightly good!

I notice in some of your online videos that you play with a full band - how is it translating your individual compositions into a band setting for live shows, or do you write with a band too?

Right now, the line-up for the live band is Sean Armstrong on guitar, Cal Donnelly on bass, and Jack Mellin on drums. I usually just take the bare bones structure of a song to those guys, and then we'll play through it a couple of times and try and figure out a way to make it work live.

What was it like being featured on 6Music? I mean, in any terms that's pretty huge - but in terms of being a young kid who makes music for a hobby, that must be fucking massive for you. How did that happen?

Yeah, that whole thing was crazy! Hearing someone on 6Music talk about a song I recorded in Chris McCory's bedroom on a boiling hot summer day. I have no idea how it happened, I think even Matthew at Song, By Toad Records was surprised by the whole thing. Thank you 6Music.

Based on that, where do you hope to take yourself as Passion Pusher in the future?

I would like to finish my Gawd Bless America EP, with Kieran Thomas and also play a show with my hero, Seal. Maybe also go to America and sleep in Brendan Dyer's basement while we write our masterpiece. Brendan is the singer in the band Furnsss, and a good pal of mine who's been trying to get me out to America for ages.


[This interview was conducted February 2015 via Facebook. The header image was taken by ElmH Photography]