They prefer to simply call themselves a rock band. Yet, when you listen to their melodies and the strong vocals of their frontwoman, you’ll recognize the mixed range of genres. Find out why we thought so…
First off… I’d like to send you a big shout out from the “Rock Era Egypt” family, and it’s an honour to have this interview with you guys. So, could you tell us a little bit about the rockers that make Ajenda?
Hey guys, Gav here, Thank you very much for taking time out to speak to us. It’s much appreciated. The members of Ajenda are Jen – vocals, Gav – guitars, Jan – bass and
Pete – drums.
Tell us how did you guys start? And what’s the story behind the name “Ajenda”?
Jen and myself founded the band. We were playing in a cover circuit band but it wasn’t fulfilling the creative needs we had as musicians. We started writing original material soon after. The band had a few line-up changes along the way before we eventually found Pete and Jan who have been ever present. There is no story behind the name Ajenda, other than Jen managed to sneak her name into it 🙂
According to your website’s bio, I read that you “wondered” what it would be like if P!nk fronted your band. Why her in particular?
The quote you mentioned was actually a written excerpt from a review we got from a webzine for our cd ‘Unrecognizable’. The reviewer was comparing Jens voice to that of Pink. It was a great personal achievement for Jen to get such comparisons, as P!nk would be one artist she aspires to.
It seems that finding the perfect female lead for a band can be tricky. How did you find your “P!nk” in Jen?
Jen would tell you, she has always been singing for as long as she can remember. I would say the comparison with P!nk and similar artists come from her vocal style, which I would describe as raspy and delivered with honesty and attitude 🙂 that’s perfect for the music we write.
Who are your inspirations behind creating your lyric themes & music?
We get inspiration from all quarters. Life, personal experiences, good times, bad times… Our lyrics tend to have a dark theme. It might be the minor chords that set the mood 🙂
It’s rare when we find bands that describe themselves only as “rock”, why is that?
It’s a nice simple fit for us. No one’s reinventing the wheel these days. No point in pigeon holing the band to a specific sub genre. Hopefully if the music is good, people like us regardless of where we sit within the rock spectrum.
So you guys are mainly a rock band, but do you secretly enjoy listening to other genres? If yes, what are they? And why?
We tend to collectively listen to mainly rock, Jan and Pete are big into prog rockers -Dream Theatre. Jen and I listen to the likes of Shinedown, Halestorm, Evanescence. My guilty pleasure away from rock would probably be Rihanna. 🙂
Most of your music lines are catchy; do you consider that while writing the music?
We try and give as much attention as we can to the whole of each song. Time permitting, we tend to scrutinise as many weak spots in a track and see if we can elevate the track to a good level. It is time consuming but hopefully worth it in the end.
Tell us about your most memorable moments on stage; and where do you think was your biggest concert?
It’s always a pleasure and an honour to play for people. We try to enjoy every show. It’s the reason we write music. If we can make it a memorable night for those who have came to watch us then we’ve gone some way to doing our job.
How do you get pumped up before going on stage?
We all get a bit nervous before we go on stage. That’s not a problem. Adrenaline is a natural response. It’s how you channel the energy that counts. We tend to stay chilled beforehand, and get ourselves prepared mentally .We try to bring our energy onstage every time we play.
Every musician has a certain message behind his/her music, what’s yours?
We’re not really bringing out any message in particular through our music. Hopefully when playing live, we leave people feeling that they have enjoyed spending their time listening to us. If we can touch people on a personal note, then that’s a great bonus.
In your album “Unrecognizable”, your closing instrumental track “Olympus Monz” stands out than the rest. Could you tell us the story behind it?
It started off as a jam in the practice room. We seemed to revisit it each week adding bits here n there, next thing you know is, it ended up on the cd 🙂
Everyone has their ups & downs, even in the music industry. What were yours when recording your album?
Our “up”, was getting the cd finished and out to people’s ears. It gave the band a new lease on life. It’s let us know we were heading in the right direction. There wasn’t any real “downs” during the recording.
UNRECOGNIZABLE ‘s cover on your web-shop has a “Parental Advisory” label as an explicit content; why is that?
Hmm, we have a couple of naughty words in there. It’s law that any music cd featuring such language has to carry such a label.
Some bands use it as an indirect way of propaganda. Care to comments on that?
I can’t speak for other bands but for us, it’s simply about the lyrics being written that way and we decided that they should remain in the tracks.
You recently toured with ZP Threat (I AM I); tell us about it.
We’re just back from our tour with I AM I. It was a great time. They are a great power metal outfit. Very talented musicians! We met some great people and played with some great bands, special mention to the guys in Fahran also. We haven’t played England as much as we would have liked but we will definitely be over there more next year.
If you could feature another musician(s) in your albums, who would they be?
I personally wouldn’t change any of the guys in this band for anyone. If we could have someone guest on a track, I would like to have Pat McManus. He can play whatever he wants and I’ll be happy with that!
Any plans for working on new materials or focus more on touring?
We are working hard to get new tracks finished and recorded. It’s looking like an EP will be our next move, though nothing is set in stone yet. We will be doing our best in the background to get some good touring opportunities sorted.
You toured mostly in Europe; do you plan on expanding to other regions?
We are up for going anywhere that we can play to an audience 🙂 We have a bucket list of places that we’d like to visit and play, so plenty to work towards.)
In the future, if you could mentor a younger band; what advice would you give them?
It’s all about the music. You can do nothing more as a musician but try to impress those people who can open doors for you. If your music sucks, you’ll not get through the first door.
Interview by: Mena Ezzat and Farah Wahid
Edited by: Ahmed S. Khalil