A Conversation with Professor Elemental

Q: Who exactly is Professor Elemental and what do you teach?

PE: I am a risk taker, a move maker, a booty shaker and an earth quaker. Also, a rapping Professor from Victorian England- here to make the world a slightly sillier place.

Q: When did the compunction to spit rhymes become overwhelming, and are you seeking treatment?

PE: At birth sadly, I rhymed from the womb onwards. While other babies were kicking their mother’s tummies, I was shouting ‘can I kick it’ from mine.

Professor ElementalQ: Please tell us about your musical influences, and where your inspiration for songs come from.

PE: The biggest inspiration is Tom Caruana, the beats he makes dictate the subject and style of my songs without a doubt. Beyond that, the world of Hip Hop never fails to throw up exciting, unexpected and delightful treats on a daily basis.

Q: To build on the last question, name your biggest NON-musical influences and inspirations.

PE: Neil Gaiman, Viv Stanshall, Neil Innes, Michael Marshall Smith, Toad of Toad hall, Clive Barker, Ramsey Campbell and my very strange friends

Q: You get to (have to) travel a lot for your music. What is the strangest place you have ever performed?

PE: I think it was the wedding of my pal (and the director of all my videos), Moog. He and his lovely wife got married on a glass bottomed boat surrounded by sharks and I was lucky enough to perform the ceremony.

Q: As a follow-up to that last question, is there a venue, event or a city in particular where you haven’t yet performed, but are willing to debase yourself for the opportunity?

PE: I love the Americas- and there are lots of parts I’ve yet to see. I really want to play in Detroit as I nearly got there once and it never quite happened. Also, Hull in the UK.

Q: Geoffrey is your butler. He seems quite the singular fellow. How does one go about hiring such a dogsbody?

PE: it’s not a question of hiring, more being stuck with the damned beast. Once an orangutan decides that he will befriend you, there is very little you can do about it.

Q: Musicians are famous for putting outrageous requests in their contract riders. Is there anything special you and Geoffrey ask for?

PE: Gosh no, I like to keep thing simple. Just a few home comforts really- hot tub, my own serving staff, a selection of meats, a live goose and a seat made out of the soft downy feathers of the hummingbird. I certainly wouldn’t consider myself overly demanding.

Professor Elemental with pipeQ: Is Chap-Hop the next big thing? What are your plans for world domination?

PE: No, it most definitely isn’t. Mr. B and I have been doing it for nearly a decade and it really hasn’t caught on. Which is just the way we like it. I don’t want it getting too popular; before you know where you are- there’d be Justin Bieber doing a chap-hop song and the whole thing would be ruined.

Q: You have a Patreon account – is that like an art vending machine – we put money in and you make art for us?

PE: Basically yes. Patreon is my favorite thing at the moment. You give me money and every week I give you a new song, compilation, artwork or some silliness. The Patreons are going to be essential in helping create the next album and my book too. We have a lovely time – you can find out more, here: www.patreon.com/professorelemental

Q: You are quite prolific with numerous albums to your name as well as collaborations with many other fine artists. Last year you created the epic APEQUEST album. What made this album different from your previous efforts?

PE: Apequest was my favorite album so far. It was a very collaborative project and I was lucky enough to work with a huge amount of very talented folk. By the end, it involved some of my Hip Hop chums, Moog directing a new video, a comic book adaption and numerous other steampunk collaborations. Plus it was entirely funded by fans, so the whole thing was just perfect. I’ve never worked so hard on a project, nor been so happy with the result.

Q: Death is a huge theme in Sage and Savant – they die in every episode. Tell us what your personal attitude towards death is.

PE: I can’t wait really, I just see it as a huge excuse for a nice lie down. I think that we avoid talk of death far too much in our culture- it’s important to have constant reminders of our own mortality. After all, there is probably no God, so we really must make the most of the very tiny amount of time we are granted on the planet.

Q: At events you are often thrown into the Emcee role as well as handling your normal performance slots. The energy this takes must be tremendous. What is your secret?

PE: CAFFEINE. Lots and lots of it.

Q: You were one of the first artists in the Steampunk world to have an active social media presence. What are you hiding?

PE: Nothing. Why? What have you heard? Is it about the basement? Look, that’s just a rumor- let me make this clear, if I had accidently opened up a portal to another world where evil beasts made of shadows and teeth held sway, I certainly wouldn’t have let several escape. And if I *had* let some escape, I certainly wouldn’t have locked them in basement, knowing that their very presence would mean the end of all humanity. Ridiculous.
I do hope that’s cleared that up.

Q: You are our musical guest in November, but I couldn’t help noticing that you also star in a comic book series and a novel? Tell us the truth – there is an army of clones at your beck and call, yes?

PE: Nope, tried that and it was a disaster. They all got drunk and left me to do all the work. My creative drive is turbo charged, there is no finer way to spend one’s time than making art. I am also inspired by a constant drive to never ever have a day job ever again.

Q: Are you really from England? Because you seem to be over here in the colonies a lot.

PE: Not as often as I’d like. Although, since Brexit, I might try and make it over more permanently.

Q: Dare I ask BREXIT? WTF?!?

PE: it really has brought out the British people at their very worst. I can only apologise.

Q: Are there any shows you are really looking forward to this coming year?

PE: Well, still left this year I have Sweden and Teslacon, not to mention a whole load of UK dates- which will all be wonderful in their own ways. To be honest, I love every show and get excited before each one.

Q: If you wanted to tell our listeners ONE THING – what would that be?

PE: No one else has got much of a clue about what they are doing either. They are all making it up as they go along, just like you are. There is a great comfort in that.

Q: Last question, I’ll be serious. Where can fans buy your music and books if they are not fortunate enough to have a show in a location near them?

PE: Please head along to www.professorelemental.com There’s art, merch, music and links to all kinds of good stuff. Thanks so much for having me!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.