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QRD #49 - Christian Artists Interview Series
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Christian Artist Interviews:
Jamie Barnes
Alan Sparhawk
Jeremy Johnson
Joseph Kendrick
Scotty Irving
Joe Badon
Brian John Mitchell
Kirk Adam
Doug Tesnow
Bryce Eiman
Tara Vanflower
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Interview with Christian Musician Scotty Irving of Clang Quartet
March 2011
Name: Scotty Irving
Band: HEE! HEE! One-man act: Clang Quartet 
Websites: Clang Quartet on Facebook
Listen to “Ava”

QRD – Do you try to keep your faith life & musical life separate?

Scotty – That would be impossible for me as far this show is concerned! The two are far too close together. However, in other bands I play in, I don’t bring my beliefs into the mix as much.

QRD – When creating music do you feel closer to God?

Scotty – Very much so. It is one of the ways I feel God’s presence at its strongest.

QRD – How has your music helped you grow as a Christian?

Scotty – Proverbs 14:26 says it best for me: “In the fear of the LORD is strong confidence: & his children shall have a place of refuge.”  Playing music/sound is one of the things that has helped me be more confident as a person in general. If you truly believe God is with you, how can you NOT be confident?  If you are confident in something, you will grow in it.

QRD – How are your faith & aesthetic ideas linked together?

Scotty – This is for the Clang Quartet show alone: the storyline of the show is my life without Christ, Christ dying & being resurrected for my sins, then my life WITH Christ. I am basically telling a somewhat abstract story of my life with this show. The instruments I build also have connections to the storyline. I have an instrument that is a horrific representation of my sins & also an instrument that is also used as a makeshift cross for the crucifixion scene. Most of the actual playing of these instruments & the drums/percussion is different from show to show. I like to let the spirit guide me as opposed to playing the exact same patterns every time. I guess you could say I have faith that God will inspire me to play something good each time! 

QRD – What has been your experience being a Christian in an underground “artistic” community? Have you experienced any negativity towards yourself regarding your beliefs?

Scotty – Some. People cannot always handle the intensity of the performances. Some voice their opinions while you are there in front of them, but most people who complain do it on a website or in a fanzine. Most of the time the other performers are friendly with me even it they think my message is not for them. Sometimes when a person complains, it is not because of your beliefs. Sometimes the noise aspect is what they complain about.

QRD – How do you feel about performing with & for people who have a completely different set of beliefs than you do?

Scotty – HEE! HEE! I do it all the time, so I guess I feel okay with it! Seriously, I really don’t think about it as much as you might think. I guess that would be my faith getting stronger over the last 14 years.

QRD – What’s your take on bands that refer to themselves as Satanic or Pagan?

Scotty – Sometimes, they are the ones who want to know the most about what I do & why!  I have had the most Satanic performers on a bill with me ask me many faith-based questions when the rest of their friends were not around. I’m not kidding! I also find that a large number of so-called Satanic artists do not believe one word of what they say from the stage. I think they are in shock to find someone who does not deal in irony the way they think I do.

QRD – What do you think of Contemporary Christian Music?

Scotty – I think I have very little place in that industry!

QRD – How did you become a Christian? Can you share your experience?

Scotty – I was 17 years old. God & Jesus Christ were just names that I had heard in church when I was actually paying attention. I was in my room & had dropped something under my bed & I reached down to get it. I felt something on my shoulder & thought someone was pushing me down. I was on the floor & found myself unable to move. I thought I was dying! I then saw what I will call a blinding white light. I heard a voice say to me “Don’t you think you’ve waited long enough?” I did not tell anyone about this event for years, but I began trying to change my life because I had no doubts as to the source of the voice I had heard!

QRD – How do you respond to people making statements like, “I thought you were too smart to be a Christian?”

Scotty – Most people don’t comment to my face as to whether or not they think I have any intelligence, but I would imagine many people think I am pretty stupid.

QRD – How do you keep up your spiritual life while on tour?

Scotty – I have no desire to do drugs or drink & as far as other temptations are concerned, my wife has nothing to fear because I love her & I am not looking for another woman. Most women have NO desire to get near me because I scare them too much!!! (Laughs)

QRD – Has your faith ever hindered your career in anyway?

Scotty – I think it has helped me for the most part. Sincerity seems to go a long way!

QRD – Anything else?

Scotty – Be sincere & strong in the Lord!!!

Other QRD interviews with Scotty Irving:
Interview with Scotty Irving of Clang Quartet (September 2013)
Clang Quartet interview (July 2002)