Gambling Hearts [Musician Interview]

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Who inspired you to make music?

The first time I heard ‘Money For Nothing’ by Dire Straits, that was the spark that lit the flame. I was quite young, 8 I reckon. Listening to that guitar intro, that was what planted the seed. I want to play guitar and make people feel the way I felt when I listened to that song. I then fell madly in love with Beatles. They were the first band to make me want to write songs. And then along came Oasis and every changed. That was when the fire really got out of control. 

What is your creative process like? Do you start with lyrics? Instruments? Concept?

Chords first, then the melody, and then the words. The chords and melody are easy, they can come within a few minutes, but I find the words much harder. I can carry the chords and melody of song around with me for months before I find the words. 

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What do you feel is the best song you have released/written and why?

My favourite (at the moment) is a song called ‘Leave It All Behind’, although that one’s not out until 12 February. I wrote that back when Brexit dominated the headlines. I love to sing that one, it’s got a haunting quality to it. It’s powerful! 

What is the best advice you’ve been given?

Just to write about what you know. I suffer with depression, so most of my songs are about dealing with that, or dealing with situations that I’ve struggled with. Writing a song can be quite therapeutic. 

If you could be any kind of cookie, what would it be and why? (Most important question)

When I was a kid my mum used to make these amazing cocoa biscuits. They were incredible, really powdery and chocolatey. Happy days.

How do you feel the Internet has impacted the music business?

I’m a hugely nostalgic person. I love the romance of the old days. I love cassettes and records, I love album covers and sleeve notes. I’ve queued outside of Our Price at midnight for the release of a new record. My kids are never gonna experience that. There are obvious perks to streaming and all, having every song available at the touch of a button for one, but I think we’ve lost more than we’ve gained. 

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If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be?

I’d love a return to the old days of new bands being discovered by A&R at gigs. I feel like now, the success of a band or artist is driven more by statistics and how good that artist’s social media skills are, rather than how good the music is. Social media’s got its place, but it shouldn’t be a marker for how good a band is. Nothing compares to seeing a band live. But what do I know? Maybe I’m just getting old. 

What is the most useless talent you have?

Other than playing guitar you mean? Haha

When you’re done with music, what do you want people to think when they talk about you and your work?

I’d rather not know!

What is your most recent project/upcoming project?

We had a show planned for the New Year, to be streamed live on Facebook, but then we got locked down again. So it’s on hold until the restrictions are lifted. That’s gonna be really cool. I’ve done a few acoustic internet gigs, but we’ve not played as a full band. Then we’ve got the new single out on February 12. It’s an awesome song.  

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