A Love Surreal has a really interesting title. That's a Salvador Dali reference, right?
Yeah, definitely. The album, as far as the photos and what I wanted to landscape, and the theme, I wanted to kind of have a surreal kind of tapestry. I wanted to make music that almost felt three dimensional and that's what I get from Salvador Dali's work. Like if you stand in front of his paintings, it's almost like you can jump inside of it. It's like a three dimensional kind of vibe when you're looking at it. When I saw it [Dali's work], I was like I wonder if I can make music, that kind of sound, that sounds like you can swim in it. Clearly, art has a big influence on you.
Yeah, definitely. I wouldn't say that I'm a big art connoisseur or know many artists, but from living in New York I have had a lot of painter friends and it's cool to trade concepts. One of my good friends is a painter and he sees himself as a musician because he plays guitar. So while he's painting, he's thinking of it as a musical composition, so that got me into thinking about music in a different way as well.And you have your own art collection in a way. You have a lot of tattoos. What are some of the pieces you've gained over the years?
Yeah, I started getting tattoos in high school. Around 2002 I started getting tattooed by a lady named Denise [De La Cerda] in Jersey City and she moved her spot over into Brooklyn. She pretty much has done most of my tattoos. My other tattoos I started getting out in L.A. and I did some of them at random. But they all just have a certain meaning as far as my journey in life. I try to put things on me that would make me remember certain things but I don't like writing. I like pictures. [Denise] is my main artist, but she moved away to Indonesia, so I have to find a new one. What are some of the pieces she's done?
Well, she did my whole right arm. We started off with a scarab. She also did a tiger pushing fire down with cool stuff in the fire like naked ladies and a Buddha and other things. But I just like her. We got to a certain place where I would let her just draw whatever she wanted to towards the end. I'd let her just have fun and do art. I really trusted her a lot. Do you have a favorite piece?
Yeah. My new favorite piece is on my left arm. I got it out in L.A. by this guy named Dr. Wu [of the Shamrock Social Club], but it's a Chinese watercolor painting of a bird looking at a waterfall in the distance. But I like it. It's right on the inside of my arm. I look at it and it kind of gives me serenity, you know? It's just peaceful scenery. [laughs] It's like when things get a little hectic for me, it's my little place of peace on my arm.