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Name: Adam Bernard
Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States
About Me: Entertainment journalist with 15+ years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, fringe movies, & chicken shawarma. Part time ninja. Nerdy, but awesome.
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Artist Of The Week - Circle 13
Monday, June 18, 2007

Many bright eyed teenagers envision themselves marrying their high school sweethearts, having kids, and living happily ever after. Very few add creating a Hip-Hop album with their significant other to that list, but that’s exactly what Brent Brehony and Crista Carroll did. Starting off dating as teenagers the Santa Barbra, California duo got married, had a child and created Circle 13, a musical project that is giving them a voice in Hip-Hop. Both had been heavily involved in music while living in the LA area before they decided to start this endeavor, Brehony even spent two years at the Musicians Institute in Hollywood. With the release of Come Feel This Brehony and Carroll are hoping their unique voice will have a chance at being heard. This week I’m sitting down with them to talk about Circle 13, what the name means to them, and what their unique cover art (pictured above) represents.

Adam Bernard: Right off the bat your album cover is different from any other I’ve ever seen in Hip-Hop, it’s a reverse telling of the creation story from Genesis. What prompted you to do this for your cover and what meaning does it hold?
Crista Carroll: I think it was just an idea I had and Brent ran with it. He was very brave to do that, I think, and to be on the cover like that. But I think it was just because our whole thing was inspired by the idea of don’t believe everything you read, look a little deeper into what we’ve been told, make your own story. Also, we’re doing this as equals and we were being a little bit silly. I wanted it to be Saturday Night Live so it would feel as though we weren’t taking ourselves too seriously.
Brent Brehony: And even though it’s a religious thing it’s not meant to be like a strict religious theme, it’s more of a metaphor of just question everything as well as don’t take yourself too seriously.

Adam Bernard: You don’t hear of a lot of white married couples creating Hip-Hop albums. How did this project come to fruition?
Brent Brehony: From work I’ve been, for seven years now, doing Hip-Hop solo stuff and I’ve just recorded tons of tracks on my own as well as produced a lot of Hip-Hop in the studio so I’ve been into that forever, that’s where the Hip-Hop comes from and she gives the alternative sense to it.
Crista Carroll: We have a very strong rock background, Hip-Hop is still pretty new for me. When Brent had the studio in LA rappers just came to him, so that was a big turning point.
Brent Brehony: I’d always liked it as far as listening to it but I was never really involved in it musically until seven years back. Our studio just started getting tons of Hip-Hoppers and most of our business was Hip-Hop, they just were coming to us and we produced so much of it that naturally it was easy to start doing it myself.

Adam Bernard: I noticed you included the lyrics to all the songs in the CD booklet, a rarity in Hip-Hop today. What led to this decision?
Crista Carroll: That’s our story.
Brent Brehony: And if we were going to put out an album really wanted to do a complete album. Nobody really does full albums with all artwork and everything so it was like if we’re going to do it let’s do a full thing. For me, I like it. I like to look at lyrics when I get an album. I think albums kind of lack the whole inside, the guts of it. Another thing is that in the past people can think one word is different and that changes the whole concept for them and it’s kind of nice to be able to go back and read it. Pretty much everything I write comes out with some kind of subtle metaphors, so I would say every lyric, even the stuff that’s personal, or the stuff that’s about my son, the stuff that’s about the world, I’d like them to hear everything. I think people will think it’s a little different, trying to talk about real things but keep it also so you can also have fun and dance to it.

Adam Bernard: Why did you choose Circle 13 as your name?
Crista Carroll: First off all there’s the 13 songs and Brent’s lucky number is 13.
Brent Brehony: My birthday’s the 13th so it’s always been a powerful number for me where everybody else has the fear of 13.
Crista Carroll: And then the circle part, I had really wanted to leave LA when I’d had a baby and come back home. We moved home with family and when we came back up here Brent had started writing. This is where he started so he’d kind of come full circle.

Adam Bernard: Finally, what are you goals for the album? Is there a “next level” for you two in regards to your music?
Brent Brehony: Definitely. We want to do at least one more album with this project. I think each of us have other projects we’d like to do but we’d definitely like to do another album like this. I think the next project may take it a little more, I wouldn’t say worldly, but taking on different issues, but it will definitely be Hip-Hop and the same vibe as far as musically. The goal for this record is just to hit as big as we can with it as far as getting fans.
Crista Carroll: And we want to touch people’s hearts and connect with their hearts so that they can find something inside themselves to reach deeper and stretch further for themselves. And I think that the genre needed a push in a different direction anyway.
Brent Brehony: That’s our goal, too. My goal is I want to be able to be on all the stations because there are a few songs out there that are on both sides of the coin so maybe we can give a little new fresh stuff to Hip-Hop.

For more Circle 13 check out Circle13music.com and myspace.com/circle13music.


posted by Adam Bernard @ 7:45 AM  
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