BACKSTAGE: Jeff Cormack of South of France
What do you get when you cross a flamingo, a pine tree, and a gazelle? The collab from South Of France music and Akomplice Clothing. Hot off a tour with the Flaming Lips, we caught up with Jeff Cormack of South Of France to get the low down on his stellar collaboration as well as his upcoming album.
Cormack, based in Denver, has always been in the creative space, working on everything from his own music, film scores, design and even a little modeling. After meeting Patrick Liberty and the team at Akomplice, he says they just clicked. “I knew the guys [from Akomplice] for a long time through a friend, they ended up reaching out to me for their lookbook, so I modeled for them in their lookbook. We did the shoot and it was really fun and they were psyched on the band and it just hit me. They do a lot of collaborations with different hip hop artists but maybe they would be into indie rock as well.“ The luggage shown throughout the film The Darjeeling Limited had always been a major source of inspiration for Cormack and was the first thing that popped into his mind for the collaboration. “I love the movie; I thought it would be so cool to do a print similar to the luggage in the movie. I’ve always wanted something like that. I came to them with this idea and they loved it so we just kind of went from there.” You can find the luggage from the collab here. They developed the print by incorporating elements from the movie and their own personal lives. Flamingos are part of the Akomplice brand’s DNA and the bear and pine trees represent both Akomplice’s and S.O.F’s Colorado roots. The timing could not have been more perfect as it tied in directly with S.O.F’s latest video for their hit “Washed Up." “I had the idea at the same time that we shot the video, which we shot at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, so we are floating around in front of all these nature dioramas, bouncing around from Africa to Antarctica, and there are all these animals behind us. So we launched the collab at the same time that we released the single and music video.”
Cormack describes S.O.F.’s sound as the “‘poppier’ side of indie rock. The music is fun, and there’s a lot going on in terms of layers and textures. But it’s ‘poppy’ and accessible. When we play shows we want people to have fun, we want people to get drunk and make out at our shows.” That may be the best description of musical sound we’ve ever heard. Cormack is joined on stage with his wife, Kelly. They were actually introduced by a music blogger who reviewed his first demo. They will be making the festival circuit starting in New York and working their way back while planning to release their upcoming album at the end of summer. Don’t miss this couple’s new music and snag one of their collabs from www.akomplice.com. But first, check out Cormack’s answers to our 21 Questions.
Go-to 'pump up song'?
MGMT’s “Time to Pretend.”
The first concert you ever went to?
Early Bird or Night Owl?
Skiing or snowboarding?
Three artists on repeat?
Peter Bijorn and John “What You Talking About,” Slash “All I Want to Do,” Kevin Morby.
Dream music cross over collab?
Peter Bijorn and John.
Tequila or whiskey?
How would you label your personal style?
Very particular, organized, and well thought out.
What would you want as a super power?
To be able to play piano like the best anyone has ever played piano.
Most recent "ah-ha" moment?
I had like five in one day working on our album like last week. Just the vibe on stuff, it all kind of clicked at the same time; I was like I’m making it more difficult than it needs to be.
Staple piece in your wardrobe?
All Saints denim jacket. I have two and I pretty much wear them every day.
Lyrics to describe you?
Anything that eloquently describes something totally normal.
Dream vacation, in detail?
Iceland; we just went and it surpassed my wildest dreams.
First thing you're attracted to in a person?
A smile, someone’s level of enthusiasm and happiness.
Doing music. I would love to just travel and take pictures if that were an option…no, I love doing music.
Most recent gift you've received?
Balloons and frozen breakfast burritos for my half birthday.
First song to move you?
Nirvana. I was so young and angsty and it was so different at the time. The first time I heard “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” I was like “WHOA, what is this?!”
Words to live by?
Buy nice or buy twice.
By Mischa Teichgraeber