by Jessica Nguyen
I spoke with Daniel Pujol last week and I have to admit, other then sampling his album, Untied States of Being, which debuted in June, there wasn’t much else I knew about Pujol. Well, I knew one thing for sure- his new album was quickly becoming my new favorite listening addiction.
Pujol grew up in Tullahoma, Tennessee. He worked odd jobs and spent a lot of time being weird. He played a lot of garage shows. He currently has a pet black rabbit named Spooky. He also has a song called “Black Rabbit”. A quick search online will find the video for “Black Rabbit” and “Mayday”- another great song. These videos are weird and original, worth a view or two. But Pujol’s selling point with these videos is they make you chuckle. In a good way. Like his songs, his visions are addicting.
This guy is also very smart- not that I doubted his intelligence prior to our interview. He finished his Masters in Global Affairs this past March at The University of Denver. He also hopes to get his Doctorate one day. I was curious how a guy who “really likes going to school” made a decision to play music. When Pujol was 13 yrs old he played the clarinet in his school’s marching band. A year later, he taught himself to play guitar. When Pujol graduated college with a degree in Political Science, he found it was easier to play music then find a job using the degree he received. However, he said when he reaches his 60s, he would like to consider teaching a class on local government.
In March of 2011, Pujol entered the Nashville Cream artist contest and won. They wanted to give him a gift card as a prize but instead Pujol asked if his poetic column, EGGS, could be a weekly part of their blog. They agreed. It’s featured in the Nashville Cream blog every Tuesday and Pujol’s girlfriend, Alexa Sullivant, illustrates. The couple usually do something nice with the money they get from the blog- like going out to dinner.
Pujol has a show in Philly next month with his band (they’re called PUJOL) at The North Star Bar. This isn’t his first time playing in Philadelphia “but it will be the biggest venue I have played here in Philadelphia thus far,” he says. Usually, Pujol and his band played house shows. His favorite venue to play though is “The Inn. It’s in Nashville and I have been there so many times, it’s familiar and I’m comfortable playing a show there.”
When I asked Pujol if he could tell me a favorite memory from a show, a story popped into his head right away. ‘It was actually a show in Philly, opening for a band called The Monotonix. It was the last show on the tour and they were going back to Iceland after the show. ‘The band just destroyed all of their instruments on stage with the crowd. I took a piece of their broken equipment as a souvenir.” As exciting as it was for Pujol, he and his band are not the type to destroy what they play with.
Curiosity always gets to best of me when I listen to new artists and new albums. I had to ask what the hidden meaning was of my favorite song on the album- “Dark Knight in Shinning Armor.” Pujol says it’s about “…being the bad guy in a relationship. Love isn’t easy and sometimes you have to be the bad guy even if you don’t want to be.”
When I asked him what his favorite song to play live was, Pujol couldn’t respond quickly. It wasn’t so easy for him to answer. To save him the trouble, I changed my wording and discovered his favorite songs to play right now- “Psychic Pain” and “Dark Knight in Shinning Armor.”
Pujol is a down-to-earth, smart Tennessee native who loves to play music, write and entertain. He’ll be at North Star on October 10th, and he’s the type of guy you should go see. His new album, as well as previous releases, are great to add to your music collection. I bet he’ll even have them for sale at the show!