Q&A: The Strokes' Julian Casablancas on Going Solo, (Almost) Being a Dad, and the Possibility of His Child Being a Yankees Fan"/>
Julian Casablancas wasn't planning to make a solo album when The Strokes went on hiatus at the end of 2006. In fact, the lead singer and primary songwriter of the New York-based band that helped put the stomp on rap-rock in the early 2000s, didn't expect his bandmates to make the break an excuse for solo detours. But, it happened, and Casablancas found himself with time on his hands, and enough material to make Phrazes For the Young. "Some of (the songs) I showed the band members and they didn't really react to it," he said in a recent phone call. "I think when all this solo business started, I kind of decided I knew how I wanted it to be."
Julian Casablancas plays Showbox at the Market on Sunday night.
The following is an excerpt of our conversation. More songs and stories are sure to unfold on Sunday at Casablancas' solo stop at Showbox at the Market.
You're about to become a dad. Congratulations. How are you guys preparing?
I don't think I'm gonna get a new haircut or act differently or live totally differently. I think a baby is amazing, but it's kind of a natural part of life. I feel like some people just kind of like stop everything. We're not planning to do that completely, you know. I think it's going to change things in a great way. Nothing crazy. Well, of course, we're going to move to the suburbs and drive a station wagon. But besides that, nothing will change.
Were you surprised when you found out?
I was surprised in the George Costanza, "My boys can swim!" way. We weren't trying, weren't not trying.
What happens if your child grows up to be a Yankees fan?
I find that hard to believe. But, I think you know, he'll have his share of bad choices that he'll have to make on his own that I can't help him with.Is this record what you had in mind to do when the Strokes went on break?
No. I didn't know what to expect. I thought things were going to change a little bit in our infrastructure. But I didn't realize about all the solo detours. I didn't foresee that at the time when we just ended our last tour.
If not to pursue solo endeavors, what was the impetus for the hiatus?
What was the impetus for the hiatus? I really wanted to rhyme with those words. There was a vibe that we were feeling from crowds, and bands, and, you know, ourselves just like, "If we do another record, they're just gonna be like 'Oh, man these guys, again!'" Instead it's like we've been gone, and it seems like the mystique has grown somehow. Our aura seems larger than it was when we stopped. I don't know. Maybe I've just been speaking to too many European journalists.
How is it different speaking to European journalist than U.S. journalists?
I don't know, they just kinda say, like, "So, how does it feel to, have, like, changed music?" Yeah, I think we changed it in Europe.