INTERVIEW: James Marsters rocks beyond Spike
While some entertainers use comic-cons as a way to promote their work, James Marsters uses them to make friends.
“I’ve met people who worked on the Mars Rover and who helped build the Hadron Collider,” says Marsters, who plays Spike in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. He’s one of the guests at the Edmonton Comic and Entertainment Expo this weekend. “I’ve met a lot of great people – and they come to these conventions dressed as wookies or vulcans. These are my type of people.”
Aside from starring in Buffy, Angel and the Dr. Who spinoff Torchwood, Marsters is another actor who’s made himself known in music circles, namely as the lead singer and guitarist of the band Ghost of the Robot (GOTR) since 2001. But he doesn’t want to be known as a professional musician.
“My guitar is therapy,” says Marsters. “I’m not the type of writer or musician who sits down and plays for four or five hours a day. I get an idea in my head and I get excited by it and can’t wait to explore it.”
GOTR’s new album, Murphy’s Law, a mix of genres, is produced by the team behind Lana Del Ray.
From his musical beginnings doing covers, to solo albums, and with various bands, Marsters has just as many musical credits as acting. That his success in Buffy always calls him back to the acting and comic-con realm and this does not bother him at all. He loves the people there and who they are. As he puts it, “The one thing they have in common is a sense of humour. And that is what makes these comic cons great.”
Marsters feels right at home amongst the weird and wonderful. A physics aficionado, he sees his ideals entrenched in the world of Sci Fi, Fantasy and What Could Be. “I love trying to figure things out. If that makes me a weirdo, then so be it. I like hanging around with people like myself.”
As for how he defines himself, he uses his eclecticism to his advantage. He takes the high road and takes it twice.
“I tell people, that first of all I’m a father,” he said. “But secondly, I’m a storyteller.”