Q & A with 4Without
by Dawn Casey Perreault
Photography by George Spataro and Jimmy Barnes
You may have heard of this band already. They hit the scene and have been causing quite a stir. Their shows are high energy. The groove is heavy yet danceable. The lead singer, Janey Age, may be small in stature,( she only wears a size 5 shoe, I know because we were talking about shoes in the ladies room of the Des Plaines Theatre), but vocally, her voice packs a powerful punch. She puts me in mind of Bjork from the Sugarcubes belting out “Regina”. Feminine for sure, but not girly. There is structure and substance in the songs they write, the bass lines are funky and you can hear overtones of influences that range from rock, to jazz, to alternative, there is something for everyone. And for fun, they throw in a pretty cool rendition of “Personal Jesus”. This band has more to offer than just a pretty face, Janey is a smoking hot dynamo on stage and her boys are having no problem keeping up the pace.
Janey Age : Vocals
Jiri Jerry Cafourek : Guitar
Karel Carl Hudecek : Guitar
Filip Halas : Bass
Drums : Josh Rockel
How did 4WITHOUT come together?
Janey: 4WITHOUT was created as a studio project in the beginning of 2009 with guitarist Jeri Jerry Cafourek, bassist Tomas Debustrol Cizak, and vocalist Jana Janey Age. They composed the first couple songs and were convinced due to popularity to start the band as a real project. After an excruciating amount of hard work they finally found the right musicians for the job over the course of four years. Cizak, was replaced by Filip Halas and guitarist Karel Carl Hudecek and drummer Josh Rockel were became two new members
Who writes the lyrics and the music for the songs?
Janey: Jerry has created the structure and the basic arrangement of the songs and then they were completed by jamming out at rehearsals with everyone’s collaboration. The lyrics and vocal lines for most of the songs created Janey. But new song ideas are now coming from other members of the band also, and they sound GREAT! .
Who are your strongest musical influences and when did you know you wanted to be a musician?
Jerry: Frank Zappa is my strongest influence. When I was 5 years old I began to play the piano. By the time I was 11, I picked up the acoustic guitar learning basic chords. When I was 14 I touched the electric guitar and formed my first band Artat. That was when my decision was made to become a musician. As Frank Zappa would say, “Music is the best” and I’m heavily addicted.
Janey: I started to sing in a children choir when i was 6 and I was in a band when i was 13 years old. But that time i didn’t know what i wanna be or what I wanna do, I wanted to be pretty much everything…. But like 15 years ago i tried to stop singing, cause i wanted to be pretty much everything…. But like 15 years ago i tried to stop singing, cause i wanted to be like “the other people”… Make money, have things.. and I stopped singing.After a couple weeks I went to see a live band and I couldn’t stop staring at the stage and felt it at that moment!!!! ” There is no other way!..I am a musician!..” ..And I went home and played my guitar till 6 o’clock in the morning..:-))).. And my influences?.. Evanescence, Lacuna Coil, Garbage, Nightwish, Guns n’Roses, U2, Pearl Jam, Led Zeppelin.
Karel: Led Zeppelin
Filip: The Mars Volta, Clawfinger, Herbie Hancock, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Mr. Bungle, Peeping Tom, Skunk Anansie, Guano Apes, Incubus, Fear Factory, Napalm Death, and Korn.
Josh: Mike Mangini, Lars Ulrich, Terry Bozzio, Thelonious Monk, Dizzy Gillespie, Charles Mingus, and John Paul Jones. I knew I wanted to be a musician when I was ten. I lied, telling my friends I had a drumkit, just so I could join their band.
Janey, who is the singer that most inspires you and why
Janey : Well, It is hard for me to pin point just one… I get inspired by every singer, which start sings and I know from the first moment that she(he) really meant it!! .When you are able to pick up on a singers feeling just from their performance. Than age, ability, and skill can become for me irrelevant .Singers like that are my biggest inspiration, it doesn’t need to be anyone famous or known. But to answer the ‘question’ with a few in particular that really have touched my heart are Amy Lee, Annie Lennox, Ann Wilson,Marie Fredriksson, Agnieszka Chylinska, Lucie Bila, Lenka Dusilova.
What has been your favorite show so far and why?
Janey: Winning the Shark City competition of The Battle of Bands 2012, because of all the wonderful support from our frineds and fans we received and all the Nite Cap shows because Dave Carlson is the best manager in Chicago and we feel there as at home .. Thanks DAVE!
Who named the band and is there any special significance to the name?
Jerry: It was Jana and me, cause we were looking for members for so long time and there was always someone missing. The longest time was without the drummer, so there was 4 of us for such a long time … 4WITHOUT….
Where would you like to be in a year from now and what is in the works?
Janey: We are in a process of recording an EP a RaxTrax Studio. We are also in the process of writing a lot of new music. During next year we would like to play live shows and share our music wherever we can. Hopefully there is still a lot of places in Chicago and suburbs supporting hard working musicians. We’ve been lucky last year to meet so many of great people helping bands and we are very thankful for it. And a year from now..?.. Well.. a year…that is a long but short time..Almost every musician dreams about making enough money to not have to go to regular jobs and have time to practice, write lyrics , to have time to be musically creative..do what we love to do the best !..MUSIC! …and the most of time it’s about the right connections, the right people and the right time to be at … there we wish to be …cause then… everybody is going to ROCK & ROLL RIDE with us..with 4WITHOUT !!!
You can see 4Without this Saturday at Stage Bar