A Conversation With Jay Watson of Tame Impala, GUM, and Pond

Hear Jay Watson discuss competition, his new album, and his dream about Prince's country music phase

jay watson interview

Photo By Andy Banjanin

Today on the Culture Creature podcast, listen to an interview with Jay Watson (Tame Impala, GUM, Pond). Listen via the player above or in your podcast provider of choice.

Jay Watson’s solo project is called GUM and his superb new album is The Underdog. The album is a whirlwind of psychedelic indie rock that careens from funky hooks to introspective musings.

Jay Watson Interview Highlights

Jay Watson on his use of the ‘underdog’ theme: “It’s a bit tongue in cheek. But also, I think everyone feels like that in situations. A couple of songs evoke that feeling when the underdog wins. That weird feeling that’s triumphant and a bit melancholic for some reason.”

Jay Watson on useful creative habits: “I just listen to a lot of music. I’m constantly trying to find the next song or whatever that makes me feel that feeling, like when you first hear something that is amazing when you’re young. It gets harder and harder the older you get, because you’ve heard more and more stuff. There are decades of recorded music; you can go so deep. There’s so much brilliant music that’s been made that nobody has heard. That’s really inspiring because it keeps you constantly making music regardless of if anyone’s gonna care about it or not.”

Jay Watson on competition:I’m probably most competitive with myself. It’s probably more out of insecurity of not being any good, rather than trying to be better than your peers. I’m friends with a lot of people that make really, really good music. Music that would’ve blown my mind when I was a kid … I don’t even know if heaps of my peers even like my music. You have no idea. It’s hard to see if you would even like your own music. You never really know. If my [music] came on in a supermarket, would I be like, ‘What is this shit?’ (Laughter) Or would I be like, ‘That’s amazing!’ You don’t really know.”

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