SHARE ROSS - THE LOVESTAINS
Once known all over the world as being the bassist of Vixen, Share Ross went on to perform in Contraband and Dogs D’Amour, before hitting the centre of the stage in Bubble, a band she shared with Dogs D’Amour/Wildhearts drummer Bam, as vocalist and guitarist. Share and Bam now have a new project, The Lovestains, which promises some exciting new music if the first track on their MySpace player is anything to go by. Since Share is a raw vegan, we knew we had to get in touch with this inspiring female – who also presents Rock N Roll TV and Raw Pirate Gourmet. She’s a hard-working woman whose optimistic sparkle is infectious. It was a pleasure to catch up with her and get more of an insight into her rock n’ roll loving, healthy living life.
Shari Black Velvet: So tell us about The Lovestains. When did the band form and what do you want to achieve with The Lovestains?
SBV: How will The Lovestains differ from your previous band Bubble?
SBV: What do you mean by 'old school'? And what do you mean by new approaches?
SR: On the touring front... with Bubble, we basically put our money where our mouths were for years and ended up completely in debt up to our ears. So we just cannot afford to do that now. If someone were to come out of the woodwork and show us a way to tour and afford gas for the vehicle and air tickets and all the rest of it without losing our shirts, I'd listen. But for now, it is purely economics. As for the new paradigm, it is no secret that more and more bands are simply releasing singles and EPs. The way of the full length CD is a little old school now and somewhat irrelevant as most people who buy music simply buy the song they like and that's it. So it seems logical to follow the new concept and simply release material as we finish it and see what happens.
SBV: You’ve been married to drummer Bam for 13 years now and you have your own recording studio. How has having your own studio helped you? Do you often have spontaneous song ideas and rush in to record them?
SR: I feel so fortunate to be married to someone I can create with. We seem to have a magical bond when it comes to all forms of art. Having our own studio is definitely incredible and is part of the whole writing process for us. We often go in with just the barest of ideas and end up with a song an hour later because we're able to track it right then and there. Combined with the fact that we know each other musically very well, there's a certain chemistry that happens when we play music together. We've joked about going onstage as a two piece and just jamming an entire set of 'new songs' every night because that is what we love the most.
SBV: It seems like rock n’ roll will always be in your blood. What is it about rock music that keeps you fired up and do you envisage still playing music with Bam when you’re 60 or 70?
SR: Well, it is certainly a terrifying prospect to think of myself at that age and rocking the Les Paul... but the playing field is shifting these days. Who ever thought the Stones would still be going? Not that I compare us to them by any stretch of the imagination. I'd love to think that I'll still be cranking up the amp when I'm a senior citizen and laying it down with Bam!
SBV: What are your favourite musical memories?
SR: Playing Japan with Bubble for the first album. Truly magical moments. The audience started singing along with some of our songs and during the big ballad, ‘Sparkle Star’, the girls in the front were crying. It was truly incredible.
SBV: You host Rock N Roll TV. Would you like to have your own show on a big mainstream TV station like MTV/VH1?
SR: I really enjoy hosting Rock N Roll TV and part of that is because it is Bam filming me! I'd love to think that some TV station someday might want to add us to the roster... but then again, like Groucho Marx said, "I don't care to belong to any club that will have me as a member". There's something about being part of the corporate world that would terrify me!
SBV: Out of all the bands you interviewed, who inspired you the most when you met them?
SR: Probably the Burning Brides. They are so full of great music and watching the pregnant bass player rock out onstage harder and better than most bassists in this town could ever hope to perform, well, that was just pure inspiration. I think they are a terrific band. But there's been a slew of bands that really impressed me... Peachfuzz, The Major Labels, The Black Diamond Heavies... I loved the songwriting talent of Evil Maria. There is a lot of talent out there!
SBV: The show started out filming and interviewing up and coming bands but now it’s just a news show. Why the change?
SR: Basic economics. The main club we filmed in shut down due to the recession and the other clubs started to ask for large sums of money to 'allow' us to film in there and promote the bands (and the club). Because we're not MTV, we don't have that kind of budget! So we had to shift the whole thing.
SBV: Since you report on the news, how addicted are you to hearing and seeing what celebs and rockers are up to? Do you love hearing the latest celebrity gossip?
SR: Haha! I am so NOT addicted to news or gossip. I do enjoy putting the newscast together and picking out stories that I think are relevant to our audience but I'm not a celeb gossip person at all.
SBV: Which well known celebrities do you give the thumbs up to and who are you sick of?
SR: I'm pretty much sick of all the usual... Britney, Paris Hilton, Mariah Carey... just not into that stuff and never will be. Of course, I'm a fan of the big superstars in music like Bowie, the Stones, Aerosmith etc so I could never diss on them!
SBV: You also started making a program dedicated to raw veganism since you and Bam became raw vegans. Tell me how you both got to the spot of becoming raw vegan. Why and when did you go vegan and why and when did you go raw?
SR: It's all Bam's fault! He had discovered a book written by two chefs about raw foods in the book shop and told me about it. We went back there and took turns reading through it before we actually purchased it. It was a scary decision because the raw vegan world challenges everything I know about food and protein and nutrition. But like we always do things, we just dived in the deep end and went 100% raw vegan on my birthday three and a half years ago. Within a month we both had major amazing changes to our bodies and psyche. It was the single biggest change I've made to my life.
SBV: For the benefit of people reading who don’t know what raw veganism is, can you explain and tell us about some of the cool meals you have actually made and love the most?
SR: Raw veganism is the concept of eating 'living foods'. Foods that are living are in their natural form or are living. So with seeds, we soak and sprout them. With almonds, walnuts etc we soak them to release their inhibitive enzyme which then allows you to get something like 400% more of their nutritional density. The best thing I could explain is that you get way more nutrition from raw vegan foods - if you eat a balanced diet of them - than if you eat cooked foods. Period. It has now been proven over and over to completely reverse diabetes within 30 days. The list just goes on and on. If you have something wrong with you, then you can probably reverse it with raw veganism. I won't guarantee that but it is a start. I mean, would you pour coca cola into your gas tank and expect your car to be happy about it? It's the same thing with all the junk food and processed foods and meat and dairy that the average person consumes. Then there is the impact on the planet! Don't even get me started. A raw vegan driving a hummer leaves a smaller footprint than a meat eating Prius driver.
SBV: What food did you give up that you thought you could never ever give up – and is there anything you eat that is similar to make up for it?
SR: That's easy - Coffee. I did find a substitute for it. We now make raw cacao shakes once in a while. It is the true version of chocolate. However it is quite bitter. So the shakes are fruits and raw cacao powder and typically another superfood that is synergistic with cacao like maca. We jokingly call it crack now because the healthier and cleaner you get even having a raw cacao shake can give you a buzz. Crazy!
SBV: What can people do if they’re not really fans of fruit or vegetables but are interested in the concept of raw veganism?
SR: Hmmmm.... That's tough. I would suggest that their tastebuds are absolutely shattered from years of bad diet and if they can at least find some fruits and veg they like, they will be amazed at the changes. They could try googling ‘Green Smoothie’ for ideas on ways to get dark greens into them which is the single most important thing to increase in your daily diet.
SBV: What health benefits have you noticed?
SR: The list is endless. My mood swings are gone. My insomnia is gone. My skin has a certain glow. My allergies are gone. I used to be allergic to every grass and sneezed every morning... not anymore! I lost weight and now just stay at a healthy weight. I have incredible energy. I feel more connected to the planet now. In general, think of the word ‘wellness’ and that is how you feel when you go raw vegan. It's all about eating pure foods. Our bodies simply thrive and our immune systems become strong. Oh, that reminds me.... yes, I have not had a cold or flu for over a whole year now!
SBV: Do you need to enjoy preparing food in the kitchen to really get to grips with raw food? What about busy folk who like to grab quick ready meals who don’t have the time and patience to spend time making meals – are there any websites that sell raw meals already prepared?
SR: Well, you do need to be committed to it. I ask people if they enjoy taking time off from their lives when they are sick. Just exchange it for a few food prep things. You can find ways to make things really fast. Yes, there are websites that sell raw meals ready to go. I'm not sure about England but in America there is rawvolution.com.
SBV: Your Raw Pirate Gourmet episode where you made the chocolate pudding was very tempting. Is a processor the number one tool a raw vegan needs? What other tools are worth purchasing?
SR: For someone who wants foods fast, I think the number one tool is a great blender. We have a Blendtec but lots of folks swear by their Vitamix. We also have that food processor you saw. Plus we have an amazing juicer that slowly extracts the juice from the produce. We try to juice at least every single day.
SBV: What do other rock musicians think of you being raw vegans? Have you inspired any to turn raw vegan themselves?
SR: Most of them are very intrigued and many of them are eating at least partly raw vegan now. It's hard to resist the concept once you've tried Bam's creations!
SBV: Have you received any cool freebies from doing either RocknRollTV or Raw Pirate Gourmet?
Aww, I wish! No but we have received wonderful emails from people who have seen Raw Pirate Gourmet and wrote to tell us how we impacted their lives in a positive way. That is what it's all about!
SBV: You’ve also helped make knitting punk rock and have published a punk knitting book called Punk Knits. With you doing everything from playing in a band to the rock n’ roll and raw vegan TV shows to punk knitting, is there anything else you still aspire to do?
SR: Well, there are two other things. One is the other musical project Bam and I have called The Twin Flames. No website yet but there's a whole lot of material coming out soon ranging from duets to all sorts of musical explorations. I'd like to believe it isn't at all what people would expect from us! Hehe. The other thing is that I'm a full time options trader in the stock market. It's an interesting pursuit and the style of trading I do is somewhat anarchistic in that I'm not really helping any companies per se but more like getting in and getting out fast... hopefully with some money. Quite punk really!