King of the Mountains – Maxi single (2009)
Sounds from the Electronic Garden – album (2009)
Hollow//remixes – Maxi single (2010) (featuring Blue-Jean Muir)
A Boy’s Adventure Tale – Songs of a-ha (2010) (featuring Martyn Bailey
Hi, how are you?
I am very good thank you!
Which instruments do you play?
Just the keyboard badly, I find my way around chords and rely on programming more than anything.
What made you decide to be a solo artist and not want to be in a band?
I’ve worked with some extremely talented people but I also enjoy the freedom of ‘going it alone’. I can adapt to either but I like to keep my options open.
Do you work with the same musicians when recording as you do when performing live?
I’ve only done one gig and that was just me. I’d like to perform with the vocalists I’ve written with but they mainly live quite far away from me so the logistics involved complicate the live option.
How would you describe your music to someone who hasn’t yet heard you?
It’s an eclectic electric mix of the 80s with a 21st century twist!
What have you been up to recently?
I just put together a maxi single of ‘Hollow’ which has some fantastic remixes on by different producers from all over the world.
What can your fans look forward to in the next 12 months?
I really hope to have another album available by the end of next year. It will be more song based and consistent than the last one.
Did you always want to be in a musician/singer when younger?
I guess all young men want to be a footballer or rock star at some point. We all have that dream within us, for most of us it continues to be a dream and I’m no exception, it’s just something I have to do for my own sanity.
What music did you listen to while growing up?
I started having single bought for me when I was just 7 years old. Back then it was music by The Police and Queen. The first music I consciously collected was by Frankie Goes to Hollywood and then I got into electronic music by Jean Michel Jarre, Kraftwerk and Depeche Mode.
How long have you been involved with writing & performing music?
I started making music 22 years ago.
What was your first music making experience?
I had an Amiga computer with a simple 8 bit sampler plugged into the back of it. I used a tracker program to make simple little instrumental songs on.
What is your current equipment?
I used to have racks of synths and modules but now I’m completely software based. I use an Apple Mac G5 running Pro-Tools LE with such soft instruments by Arturia and Spectrasonics.
Are you self-taught or did you have lessons?
If you had an unlimited equipment budget what would be on your shopping list?
A new Apple Mac (mine has to be started up with the aid of a hairdryer aimed at the RAM chips!), A full pro-tools system and a heap of plug-ins!
Do you use the same equipment live as you do when in a studio?
I think if I did live again I would use a simpler version of my studio setup just sequencing audio live.
Do you have a set routine when writing and recording or does it depend on each track and the inspiration?
I get very much inspired by what I’m listening to at the time so I go for a particular sound and get in the zone. It usually starts with a sound, then a bass line and then some percussion parts. Things get brought in and thrown out along the way. It’s like making a cake in a way, you play with the ingredients until it is right for you.
Which software/recording process do you use?
Would you sign with a major record company?
No, if they own your recordings there is nothing you can do with them after the record company have marketed them for like 2 weeks. It’s dead then and I don’t like that mentality. I don’t want my music perceived as just another product like a new flavour of ice cream!
Do you have any new recordings planned?
Yes, but not sure how they will evolve yet.
How much involvement do you have with the arranging and production of the songs when recording?
Everything except the mastering, which is done by the same guy each time. I totally trust his ears so I get Tris at Lumen in Brighton to do that for me.
Is the production side of things something you’d like to get involved more in the future, maybe working with other artists?
Yes, perhaps. I’m not sure how easy it would be to compromise with someone else’s work though.
Do you find the process of recording enjoyable and does it get easier the more you do?
I love it, starting with nothing and creating a new journey is the best high to be had. It’s never really easy as each track has its own identity.
Do you try to capture your ‘live’ sound on recordings or do you think that the ‘live’ sound and recorded sound should be different experiences for your fans?
As all my music is programmed I think it is important to try and make new versions for live work.
Do you have any favourite tracks on your album?
Tabula Rasa, King of the Mountains, Hollow, Kubrick are all tracks I am very proud of but each track is special for its own reasons.
Do you write songs/tracks only about personal experiences?
I don’t write lyrics.
Do you find song writing easy or difficult?
I find the hardest part is starting, then it’s fairly straight forward for me.
Is there anyone who you would like to collaborate with on writing songs or performing?
In a dream world Martin Gore. I was lucky enough to program a track with ‘Onetwo’ which has Martin Gore on guitar so that’s probably as close as I’ll get.
Who are your favourite songwriters?
Martin Gore, Bjork, Pal and Magne of a-ha, David Sylvian…the list goes on!
Which countries have you gigged in?
Only London, UK at present.
Which countries would be at the top of your list to tour?
I’ve had great support from countries such as Germany, France, Spain, Russia, Greece, the U.S, Australia, New Zealand, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Sweden and lots more so any of those would be great!
How do you promote your music and get your music out to new fans?
I rely on the support of online magazines, net based radio stations and basically word of mouth.
Which music promotion websites do you use and do you have a favourite?
Myspace is good centre to operate from, you can make a lot of good contacts on there but it is a lot of work.
Do you think such sites and the internet are good tools for independent and unsigned artists?
Yes they are but unfortunately there are so many people doing it. There’s no quality control so when you are serious about doing it you can still be perceived as just another novice having a laugh with their friends.
With all the various websites out there for independent and unsigned artists, is there still something that is missing from them that you think would benefit the lesser-known artists?
I think it is more to do with the artists themselves, the only way you will get noticed is by persevering and being professional in your outlook and presentation.
How do you relax?
I read, watch films and listen to my ipod a lot. I also like to spend time with my close friends.
What's your best/worst experience at a gig?
I have only done one so I guess my options are limited here! It was great to get instant feedback and hear my music that loud! The worst thing is seeing people talking at the bar with their back to you.
Do you get nervous before a gig- how do you calm down?
Yes but it’s quite a nice nervousness…adrenalin I guess.
What else do you do apart from being a singer/songwriter?
I’ve just spent 4 years studying a degree in Psychology so that kept me busy!
Would you like to be a full time working musician or are you happy with things as they are?
I’ll always have music in my life but to what degree in the future I don’t know.
Has your music been used on any film soundtracks?
It has been in various television programmes on productions by Discovery and the BBC to name two.
Is composing for film & tv something you’d like to get involved in if the opportunity came along?
Film would be a great challenge, yes.
Is there anything you'd like to add?
Thank you for helping promote what I do. It is important for small fish like myself to keep swimming in such a large ocean. It’s only through people being kind enough to spend their hard earned money on my music that makes future releases possible, so thank you!