Category Archives: Interviews

I am occasionally lucky enough to be able to interview some of my favourite artists and actors. Here are those interviews.

Interview with Katy Bentz (Steph Gingrich in Life is Strange Before the Storm)

Life is Strange Before the Storm re-acquainted us with some of the characters we had come to love from the original game. But not only that, we got introduced to some new characters also. A favourite of a lot of peoples, myself included, was Steph Gingrich. She’s the girl who you really need to take the time and play D&D with in episode 1.

Steph is played brilliantly by the talented, and always-funny, Katy Bentz. Katy has been building up quite the following, which includes too her growing YouTube channel. Every video she makes is a joy to watch. I was blessed to be able to send Katy some questions – a lot of the same questions that I also asked in my recent Interview with Kylie Brown – that she very quickly replied back with.

The Interview

Please tell us about yourself in as many or as little words as you like.
I am an actor living in Los Angeles, California. Just passed my year mark of living in the city of hustle! I’m outgoing, independent, determined, strong-willed, caring, and passionate. I enjoy to find the simple things in life, as silly as that may sound. We can get so caught up in our day-to-day life that we forget about walks around the block, or watching the sunset. My favorite color is blue and I love Dolphins! 😊
What is your favourite Book?
Not much of a reader, but I read White Oleander for one act in high school and I really enjoyed it. I do love to read self helps books though!
What is your favourite Album?
Omg! Too many. Probably a Say Anything Album. I love anything pop punk!
What is your favourite Film?
(500) Days of Summer anyone? 😊
What is your favourite TV Show?
I really like That 70’s Show. The 100 and Under the Dome are some others I have really enjoyed.
Do you have a favourite film/tv/musical soundtrack?
Guardians of the Galaxy is awesome! But also The Legally Blonde Musical Soundtrack….I know I am all over the place!
What poster / posters do you remember having on your walls growing up?
I had way too many animal posters haha and these two weird ocean space posters…I know…interesting. Oh! And a Backstreet Boys poster where I circled Nick’s face and drew on the other members haha
You’re walking somewhere and your mp3 player has only a little battery left; You’ve only got time for one more song. What song do you play?
Oh man. Too many options. I get on song kicks, where I find songs and listen to them over and over until I can’t anymore haha, so I would say out of my current mix…Touch by Little Mix, such a feel good song!
Was there any defining moment in your life when you knew that you wanted to be an actor and model?
In High School when I was still finding my place amid being a teenager, I quit the dance team and joined the drama club and I’m not sure that that was when I knew I wanted to be an actor. But that was the moment where I felt like I could finally be myself and that my peers weren’t going to judge me. And that was the start of my passion for the arts and everything it stood for.
What is the proudest moment of your career so far?
Life is Strange: Before the Storm, hands down. I have never felt so amazing about a certain role and I get to see the affect this game and my character have on the players and it’s the greatest feeling.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Works harder than you think you need to work.
Growing up, who were your heroes?
My mom and my peers around me. I never looked very far for influences in my life. My mom meant and still means a lot to me and I always look to her for guidance. One of my best friends in high school was two years older than me and in the drama club. She was someone I strived to be like. She is still my best friend to this day and someone I am riding this journey with, and it’s amazing.
Who is your biggest influence in how you approach what you do today?
My mom again haha and past and current relationships. I feel like the people I am closest with are the ones that see all of me and because they are close to me, they can be honest with me about things that I may need to do differently.
If you could ask any person – living or passed – any question, who would it be and what would you ask them?
Honestly, any elder person. And I would want to ask them what advice they’d give their 25 year old self.
In Chloe Price’s journal she writes: “I can never decide if Steph is the coolest or nerdiest person in all of Blackwell.”. What would you say to that? Coolest or Nerdiest?
Coolest!
With Steph being a new character in the already established world of Arcadia Bay, did you feel any pressure in stepping into that world for the first time?
Not at all! I didn’t know the story line prior to recording for Steph, so I came in with a fresh mind, ready to bring the character to life.
Are there any causes / projects that you would like to raise an awareness of to the readers here?
There aren’t specific projects or organizations off the top of my head, but I am a big supporter of anti-bullying projects and efforts. Bullying was a huge thing when I was growing up and I can only imagine what kids in schools are going through now.
Could you tell us a joke?
What’s a plumber’s favorite drug? Crack! I just made that up! Pretty good? haha

Interview with Kylie Brown (Rachel Amber in Life is Strange Before the Storm)

The character of Rachel Amber has been brought to life, in ways we couldn’t even imagine, by the very talented Kylie Brown.

Rachel Amber was but a memory that we caught glimpses of through the eyes of Max’s best friend, Chloe, in Life Is Strange. But now that we have witnessed the events that brought Chloe and Rachel together in Life Is Strange Before the Storm, we can share in those memories together.

I have been lucky enough to be able to ask Kylie Brown some questions about herself, her life and her approach to her craft.

The Interview

Please tell us about yourself in as many or as little words as you like.
Lazily active and very passionate.
Who is your biggest influence in how you approach what you do today?
Jennifer Lawrence and Tom Hanks. I’ve always said that I want a career like Jennifer Lawrence where I go from being in movies that go to comic-con to movies that are Oscar nominated. And Tom Hanks where I can own any role that comes my way.
What inspires you?
I don’t think there’s any one thing that inspires me. There’s a lot of things that do. Like a simple walk around my home town, staring at the Hollywood sign, watching a movie in the theaters, my parents, my friends, watching BTS footage from a movie. Inspiration is everywhere for me.
What annoys you more than anything else in the world?
When people talk during a movie/tv show that I’m watching. I literally hate it …so much… so very much. Just don’t do it.
What is the proudest moment of your career so far?
I would definitely have to say Life is Strange: Before the Storm is my proudest moment in my career right now, it was so far from my normal acting jobs and I had such a blast filming it and watching it take off.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
You’re on the right track kid, just keep going for your dreams, you’ll get there.
If you could ask any person – living or passed – any question, who would it be and what would you ask them?
I would ask Jennifer Lawrence, “What’s your favorite kind of pizza?”
Rachel Amber is someone we’ve known for a long time now. We’ve gotten to know her through word of mouth and other characters’ experiences but we’ve never met her. Is there a lot of pressure to portray this brand new person to fit with the Rachel Amber people already feel that they know?
Rachel Amber Missing Poster
Rachel Amber Missing Poster from Life Is Strange

Well yeah! There’s a ton of pressure! Rachel was portrayed as this woman who’s out of this world, and here I am…on earth. I mean really, even her NAME is kickass. Rachel Amber. Like, what?!? My biggest fear was not doing right by the fans, and all I can say now is that I am so honored the Life is Strange community has accepted and welcomed me as their Rachel.

What is your favourite Book?
1984 by George Orwell
What is your favourite Album?
Uhhhhh, the last FULL album I’ve ever listened to was from the Jonas Brothers….so I guess the Jonas Brothers Lines, Vines and Trying Times album? If musicals count as albums, then definitely Hamilton.
What is your favourite Film?
Depends on the genre really.

  • Action (which is my favorite genre): any marvel movie that just came out
  • Drama: Silver Linings Playbook
  • Comedy: Baywatch
  • War (or historical): Saving Private Ryan
What is your favourite TV Show?
Will & Grace (I’m currently watching it as I write this) and Game of Thrones
Do you have a favourite film/tv/musical soundtrack?
I LOVE movie scores and I can’t pick a favorite. But probably Jurassic Park.
Is there anything that you are binge listening to / watching at the moment?
HAMILTON and I just finished binge watching a new comedy on Netflix called The Good Place
You’re walking somewhere and your mp3 player / phone has only a little battery left; You’ve only got time for one more song. What song do you play?
Hakuna Matata from the Lion King so that way if it dies in the middle off the song, I’ll still be singing it at the top of my lungs giving everyone a show.
What was the first poster you ever had on your wall?
Oh wow, I don’t know. I first moved into my house when I was two and my room was decorated like a princess room. Pink walls, princess bedding and princess posters. So I’m guessing the first poster to be on my walls was a princess one that had a princess saying on it.
Could you tell us two truths and a lie?
  1. I’ve known my best friend since kindergarten and we’re still best friends.
  2. I broke my leg three times in two years due to soccer, snowboarding, and climbing on my roof.
  3. I grew up with three boys across the street from me and we would play army and have airsoft wars and one day I got shot right next to my tear duct and was forced to wear goggles every time after that.

*Answers at the bottom of the page.

Do you have any announcements or causes you’d like to raise an awareness of?
I’m a huge advocate for anti-bullying. I was a safe school ambassador at my high school where we would step in and speak up if we saw bullying going on and it saddened me to see how much was going on. And it saddens me even more seeing how much bullying is going on in this world right now, I always thought it stopped when we graduated high school. Bullying is so pointless to me, we are all human beings, we all have stories that no one is aware of, we all have pain that no one understands. No matter what you are feeling, it is valid, no matter what you are going through, I’m here for you. I don’t care if you are halfway across the world, you matter and you are cared for. And if you see someone getting bullied, please speak up. Stand up for your peer. Let them know they are not alone. If we all do that, this world will be a happier place.

*Answers to the two truths and a lie question

Question Truth or Lie?
1 Truth
2 Lie (I’ve never broken anything but my toe one time)
3 Truth
Interview with Du Blonde

Interview with Du Blonde

Beth Jeans Houghton goes by the alias “Du Blonde” and is not only an awesome musician, but also works in photography; comic books and illustrations. I had the opportunity to ask her a bunch of questions about herself which she has kindly answered for us here.

She was super fast in answering these questions, however, I have taken a long time getting them published as this site has been going through reshuffles. So at last here it is – my interview with Du Blonde.

Interview with Du Blonde

Please tell us about yourself in as many or as little words as you like.
I’m a musician and artist from Newcastle. I make records, comics, videos and sculptures.
Growing up, who were your heroes in music?
When I was a kid I was really into 60’s pop and soul, then I moved onto glam rock, psych and garage. But always the standards like Neil Young, Bowie, The Mamas & the Papas. I went through a big ‘Love’ phase, especially their records Forever Changes and Da Capo, and also Frank Zappa and Captain Beefheart. But really if you could see what I listen to day to day it varies from ‘Poison’ by Alice Cooper to William Basinski’s ‘Disintegration Loops’.
Growing up, who were your heroes outside of music?
I had a mad crush on Michael Palin when I was 6. I think the people who inspired me were the ones who seemed to be relentlessly doing what they love, travelling and creating worlds to live inside of. If I could anthropomorphise a whole company i’d say Disney. Those movies helped shape my imagination when I was a kid. They were enthralling and they made me think. Before I could understand it I was trying to figure out how they made those illustrations move. Then there was the musical aspect. ‘The Lion King’ for example introduced me to Elton John and Hans Zimmer, whereas ‘Fantasia’ introduced me to Bach and Stravinsky.
What was the first album you remember buying?
Britney Spears’ ‘Oops!… I did it again’ was the first record I bought with my own money from an HMV in Calgary. I was 10 years old, wearing a strappy mini dress and foam platform sandals. There were children playing in the streets in huge outdoor paddling pools and I thought it was just the best.
Was there any defining moment in your life when you knew that you wanted to write, record and perform music?
I think I was getting the urge a long time before my head caught up and I realised it was something I wanted to do. I went through a phase of trying to sing opera around the house when I was a kid which was awful. I used to make a lot of costumes and I had dreams of creating things but it wasn’t until I was about 15 that I realised I wanted to, and could, write music if I put my mind to it.
Who is your biggest influence in how you approach what you do today?
My mother taught me a lot about standing up for myself. She was always supportive of me pursuing what made me happy while at the same time giving me an understanding of how hard you have to work if that’s what you choose to do. She gave me the ability to dream and approach those dreams practically.
What is the proudest moment of your career so far?
The proudest i’ve felt is sitting in the back of a van with a group of people I love, travelling along a road, knowing that somehow I was blessed with a life in which I can do just that. The freedom to do what you love on your own terms is infinitely more valuable than any cheque or accolade, and I hope I can continue to do that for the rest of my life.
What is your favourite book?
‘Jonathan Livingston Seagull’ by Richard Bach, and Richard Brautigan’s ‘In Watermelon Sugar’.
What is your favourite album?
  • Joni Mitchell – Ladies of the Canyon
  • Frank Zappa – Over-nite sensation
  • Bruce Springsteen – Nebraska
  • fIREHOSE – Ragin’, Full on
  • Big Star – #1 Record
What is your favourite film?
  • True Romance
  • Paris, Texas
  • Badlands
  • koyaanisqatsi
  • The Royal Tenenbaums
What is your favourite TV show?
I binge-watched Stranger Things in one night and ate so many cashews that I had to ration my water so I wouldn’t have to leave my room and I was prepared to pee in a bottle. But also, The Wonder Years, Gilmore Girls and The Simpsons.
Do you have a favourite film/tv/musical soundtrack?
Grease is fucking great. But in terms of soundtracks, ‘Man on wire’ turned me on to Michael Nyman. I thought American Hustle had a really great soundtrack.
Are there any new albums you are binge listening to at the moment?
Well it isn’t an album but right now i’m listening to the audio book of Bruce Springsteen’s autobiography which is great. I have a few playlists I alternate between which include things like the Rolling Stones, Aphrodite’s Child, Karen Dalton, Rush and Simon & Garfunkel. When I’m stressed I listen to Peals’ record ‘Walking Field’.
You’re walking somewhere and your mp3 player has only a little battery left; You’’e only got time for one more song. What song do you play?
Right now it’s ‘Visions of your reality’ by Ultimate Spinach.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Don’t start smoking. Trust your instincts more and don’t back down when they’re being put into question. Don’t worry about the boys that don’t worry about you.
If you could ask any person – living or passed – any question, who would it be and what would you ask them?
If I could go back in time I’d ask my Grandma to teach me how to knit the socks she made.
Do you have any upcoming projects you’d like to mention?
I’m working on a new record right now which i’m excited about, I made it out in Oakland with some really great people and i’m playing more guitar and producing which is really freeing. I’m also putting together issue 2 of my comic book ‘Butt Hurt’ which includes a lot of vomit and a guy who tried to woo me by comparing me to a game of Jenga.
Could you tell us a joke?
I can tell you about the time I ate a prize-winning square Hula Hoop worth £100,000 in the dining hall of my primary school in 1996.

Thank you, Beth

A big thank you to Beth for taking the time out to answer these questions and giving us some insights into the lady behind the frickin’ awesome music.

Interview with Lyndon Holland

One of my favourite soundtracks, and a recent obsession of mine, has been the soundtrack to the game Virginia by Lyndon Holland. His soundtrack has had such a great affect on me, and no doubt many others.

Lyndon recently agreed to answer some questions of mine so that we can get more of an understanding of the man behind the music.

The Interview

Please tell us about yourself in as many or as little words as you like.
I’m a pretty normal guy with geeky interests and a strange job, working out of my bedroom in West London.
Growing up, who were your heroes in music?
John Williams, Danny Elfman, Alan Silvestri, Jerry Goldsmith, Nobuo Uematsu
Growing up, who were your heroes outside of music?
Not sure I really had many ‘heroes’ to be honest, but I remember Spielberg movies having a huge affect on me.
What was the first album you remember buying?
Ha, I distinctively remember it being Metallica – …And Justice for All
Was there any defining moment in your life when you knew that you wanted to write music?
I remember being in love with the music to Final Fantasy VIII as a 13 year old. As a result, I started playing around with midi in a basic software package called Noteworthy composer.
Who is your biggest influence in how you approach what you do today?
The way I think about music in relation to narrative developed a lot whilst I attended The National Film and Television School. I couldn’t choose a single individual, but the process of working with like minded people in such a heightened and condensed way for 2 years was as influential as anything else.
What is the proudest moment of your career so far?
Probably all the positive the feedback I have received from people after playing Virginia.
What is your favourite Book?
To Kill a Mockingbird
What is your favourite Album?
Tough one. In terms of music that I keep coming back to, I suppose it could be something like The Beatles – Abbey Road. But ask me another day and it would probably be something different.
What is your favourite Film?
Again, very difficult. I could pick something obscure and meaningful, but instead I will choose something I have watched a million times and never fails to work it’s magic; E.T.
What is your favourite TV Show?
Something like Breaking Bad or House of Cards probably deserves this, but for all it’s faults, I still have a huge place in my heart for Lost.
Do you have a favourite film/tv/game/musical soundtrack?
For the way it works with the picture, I love stuff like Howard Shore’s score to Crash or Jonny Greenwood’s score to There will be blood. But then for listening purposes outside of the film, I dunno, I love The Lion King, and the recent arrangements of Final Fantasy VII in the Final Symphony album.
Are there any new albums you are binge listening to at the moment?
For no real reason in particular, I’ve been listening to The Nightmare Before Christmas a lot recently, ha.
You’re walking somewhere and your mp3 player has only a little battery left; You’ve only got time for one more song. What song do you play?
Pink Floyd – Comfortably Numb
What advice would you give to your younger self?
I’d tell younger self to concentrate on understanding form and structure before attempting any complex orchestration.
If you could ask any person – living or passed – any question, who would it be and what would you ask them?
I’m definitely throwing this question away, but I’d ask Stanley Kubrick if Eyes Wide Shut was his final cut
Do you have any exciting new projects you are working on that you can tell us about?
There are some things in the pipeline, but it’s too early to say anything at this time!
Could you tell us a joke?
“I’ve decided to sell my Hoover… well, it was just collecting dust.”

A big thank you to Lyndon

Thank you, Lyndon for taking the time to answer these questions.

If any of you need convincing to listen to his awesome music, then please do read my write up of the Virginia soundtrack. Or just go and buy it right now.

Interview with Bad Electric

One of my favourite synth artists of recent times is Bad Electric. His E.P. LUX, which I wrote about previously, is still in my regular circulation.

I reached out to him this week on SoundCloud about answering some of my questions. Below you can read the answers to those questions and get to know him a bit more.

The Interview

Please tell us about yourself in as many or as little words as you like.
I’m a grumpy guy who grew up in rural Pennsylvania during the 1980s . I work in contemporary art galleries in NYC and make music out of my home studio in Brooklyn.
Growing up, who were your heroes in music?
No one in my family was into music when I was a kid. My dad sort-of liked Phil Collins and made a point of it whenever Phil or a Genesis song came on the radio. My Mum had a weird thing for Michael Bolton. My older sisters were jamming Tiffany and Debbie Gibson. I wouldn’t be exposed to good music until junior high when my friend lent me a Pink Floyd mix tape his older brother had made. Later, my goth uncle got me started on the whole 80’s goth kick I’m still on. I was a huge fan of The Cure so Robert Smith would’ve been my biggest hero.
Growing up, who were your heroes outside of music?
I don’t remember having any heroes that were real. Pee-Wee Herman was someone I looked up to.
What was the first album you remember buying?
If I remember correctly, it was a cassette single of The Safety Dance by Men Without Hats
Was there any defining moment in your life when you knew that you wanted to write, record and perform music?
It was while I was at art school. I realized music was way more interesting than art. Even easier in a way. I dropped out and moved to New Orleans in search of my soul.
Who is your biggest influence in how you approach what you do today?
I like to think that I’ve reach a point where I have found my own voice and I’m doing my own thing my own way. David Bowie was my biggest influence most of my adult life. I’ve always felt that Bowie was a catalyst for thousands of musicians. People try to emulate him and his songwriting approach, his eclecticism, his vocal technique, his look, his moves. They’d always come away with their own voice in the end. Anyways, he’s dead now.
What is the proudest moment of your career so far?
Probably my short-lived collaboration with the artist Rita Ackermann. We recorded a few tracks last year that will find their way onto my next EP.
What is your favourite Book?
Phillip K. Dick – The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch
What is your favourite Album?
Iggy Pop – The Idiot
What is your favourite Film?
Withnail & I
What is your favourite TV Show?
The original Twilight Zone
Do you have a favourite film/tv/musical soundtrack?
Anything by John Carpenter.
Are there any new albums you are binge listening to at the moment?
I don’t listen to much new stuff. It’s all rehashed old stuff anymore. Sometimes done very well but unoriginal all the same. That goes for my music too as far as I’m concerned. Alien Sex Fiend has been on heavy rotation ’round here lately.
You’re walking somewhere and your mp3 player has only a little battery left; You’’e only got time for one more song. What song do you play?
Howard Jones – “What is Love?”
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Don’t spend so much time worrying about everything. It always works out. Also, be more confident. Chin-up, buddy.
If you could ask any person – living or passed – any question, who would it be and what would you ask them?
I’d ask someone passed about what happens when we die.
Do you have any upcoming projects you’d like to mention?
I’d like to get another EP out early next year.
Could you tell us a joke?
Dyslexic man walks into a bra.

Thanks

A big thank you to Bad Electric for taking the time to answer those questions. I really can not wait to hear his next E.P. that he mentions above, so you should go and buy his current one now on bandcamp, and help make it happen.

Interview with French Electronic artist Hante

During my recent exposure to synthwave music, I have discovered an exciting French Electronic artist by the name of “Hante”. Her music edges towards the darker side of synthwave, and is one of the artists who is easily identifiable among her synthwave contemporaries. Whenever I hear a song by Hante, it feels like Hante.

I have written up a review of her release, “No Hard Feelings” too, which you can read here.

I was excited when she agreed to answer my questions. Please read on below to find out more about the lady behind Hante.

The Interview

Please tell us about yourself in as many or as little words as you like.
Hi! I’m Hélène. I’m behind the solo project “Hante“. Since the beginning of the year, I’m running my own label “Synth Religion” in the beautiful but sometimes suffocating city of Paris.
Growing up, who were your heroes in music?
As a kid, I was fascinated by Freddy Mercury, his voice, his charisma. Queen has been a huge part of my childhood’s soundtrack. Also, Serge Gainsbourg, Michael Jackson… But the discovering of Radiohead when I was a teenager, has been a massive turn in my music tastes. The album “Ok Computer” was and still is a real masterpiece and a big influence for me.
Growing up, who were your heroes outside of music?
I was really into Cinema and I loved lots of characters and actors. I think about the french actor Louis de Funes, Robin Williams (more than amazing as Peter Pan in Hook), the kids in Stand by Me and in The Goonies, Elliott in ET, Wednesday in The Addams Family, among so many others…
What was the first album you remember buying?
Honest answer: the soundtrack of Aladdin lol. But if you mean the one who really changed my life, as I said before it’s “Ok Computer” from Radiohead.
Was there any defining moment in your life when you knew that you wanted to make music?
I started taking music theory courses, piano, harp and singing lessons really young, so music has always been a big part of my life. I was composing stupid depressing music in my bedroom when I was a teenager. But the turn was at the beginning of my twenties when two friends of mine started a metal band. They asked me to write some lyrics. We were in the rehearsal room and I started singing shyly on the chorus. They said “You have to be our singer”. It was one of the most exciting moment of my life, like “OMG I’m in a band!!” haha. Since then, nothing made me feel more alive, prouder of myself, than composing music and playing on stage.
Who is your biggest influence in how you approach what you do today?
I would say Depeche Mode (all their 80’s albums), a mix between dark, emotional and new wave sounds. But of course, a lot of bands influence my work nowadays. For each album I composed, I was really into two or three bands and it inspired my work a lot. For my next album for example, I’m really influenced by a french band called Las Aves. I love their bass synth sounds, it’s very contemporary. I also love the latest album of Bat For Lashes, I love the cinematographic approach.
What is the proudest moment of your career so far?
I would say my performance this year at the WGT festival in Germany. It was the first time I was playing alone in front of so many people. And even if I have to admit that it was not my best performance so far, I felt very proud to have done it all by myself. I’m kinda shy and discreet in my everyday life and this is amazing how you can be different on stage. I feel powerful and confident, it’s a real therapy for me!
What is your favourite Book?
I’m not gonna lie, it’s been a while since I’ve read a book! So I would say a collection of poems that my grand-mother gave to me. The title is “les cent plus beaux poèmes de la langue française” (The hundred most beautiful poems of the french language). It inspired and still inspires me a lot.
What is your favourite Album?
It’s really hard to say, because I’m always obsessed by a new album. But I would say that the last huge crush that I had was a few years ago, “Sentinelle” from Xeno and Oaklander.
What is your favourite Film?
“Eternal Sunshine of The Spotless Mind” from Michel Gondry or “The Big Blue” from Luc Besson.
What is your favourite TV Show?
I absolutely love TV shows, it’s my favorite hobby. So I don’t know what to choose! Maybe “Friends”, a classic one, but the best finale is without hesitation the one of “Six Feet Under”.
Do you have a favourite film/tv/musical soundtrack?
“Virgin Suicides” from Air, the soundtrack of the Sofia Coppola movie that I absolutely love too.
Are there any new albums you are binge listening to at the moment?
“Die in Shanghai” from Las Aves, “The Bride” from Bat of Lashes, “Everywhere I go is Silence” from Box and the Twins that I just released on my label, I’m absolutely in love with this album!
What other artists should I be listening to?
It depends what kind of music you want to listen to! Gold Zebra, Xarah Dion, Hørd, CONFRONTATIONAL, Selofan, Ash Code, Kælan Mikla…
You’re walking somewhere and your mp3 player has only a little battery left; You’ve only got time for one more song. What song do you play?
Right now, I would like to listen to “My Lady Blue” from Eric Serra, the beautiful song of “The Big Blue” soundtrack. I have it in mind thanks to this interview!
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Don’t waste your time trying to find a B plan, follow your heart and make music your A plan right away!!
If you could ask any person – living or passed – any question, who would it be and what would you ask them?
To be honest, I find this kind of question really tricky lol. You try to think about something smart and then something more personal but it would be too self-centred compared to all the funny, tragic, essential questions you could ask to all the people who are living or lived in this world. So I decide to not ask anything!
Could you tell us a joke?
I’m more the kind of people to laugh to other people jokes than the kind to tell jokes!
Also, do you have any plans to play in the UK?
Nothing planned for now, but I really would like to play in the UK in 2017!

Thank you Hélène

A big thanks to Hélène for taking the time to answer these questions. I really appreciate the time it has probably taken to read through all these questions and answer them as honestly and completely as she has.

If Hante does play in U.K. in 2017, I’ll be the first one at the door.

Interview With Droid Bishop

Droid Bishop is a well known and respected name within the synthwave scene. He has music on SoundCloud that spans back several years, which you should definitely go and check out.

This month I was lucky enough to be able to send him some questions to answer and with Bishop-like precision, he got the answers straight back to me.

The Interview

Please tell us about yourself in as many or as little words as you like.
I am Droid Bishop. I live & make music in Los Angeles. This city at night is the best place and time to exist.
Growing up, who were your heroes in music?
My childhood musical heroes (who are still my heroes) include, Michael Jackson, Metallica, Queen, The Misfits, Daft Punk, Steely Dan, Pink Floyd, Django Reinhardt, Tupac, and many many more.
Growing up, who were your heroes outside of music?
Arnold Swarzenegger, Bruce Lee, Jamie Thomas, Harrison Ford, Marty McFly, Ferris Bueller , Zack Morris
What was the first album you remember buying?
Michael Jackson “Dangerous” on cassette
Was there any defining moment in your life when you knew that you wanted to write, record and perform music?
I’ve been playing music since I was 7 years old, but after discovering Metallica’s early albums I knew that was it for me.
Who is your biggest influence in how you approach what you do today?
Daft Punk, Tycho, Todd Terje, Power Glove, Com Truise, Aphex Twin
What is the proudest moment of your career so far?
Receiving messages from fan’s letting me know that my music makes their life better. That is what music/art should be about.
What is your favourite Book?
The Alchemist
What is your favourite Album?
I don’t know if I can answer that, but a few top choices would be: Michael Jackson “Thriller” , Metallica “Master of Puppets” , Daft Punk “Discovery”, Steely Dan “The Royal Scam”
What is your favourite Film?
Die Hard
What is your favourite TV Show?
Seinfeld
Do you have a favourite film/tv/musical soundtrack?
At the moment, “It Follows” film score. Also, “Back To The Future”
Are there any new albums you are binge listening to at the moment?
Not at the moment. I’m working on new music, so I tend to block everything else out while I’m in that process.
You’re walking somewhere and your mp3 player has only a little battery left; You’ve only got time for one more song. What song do you play?
Probably an unreleased demo of Droid Bishop song that i’m working on.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Take it easy on the drugs & alcohol.
If you could ask any person – living or passed – any question, who would it be and what would you ask them?
I would ask Freddie Mercury if we could make a song together.
Your stage name must be a reference to Bishop from Aliens. What made you use him for your name?
I had made a song many many years ago, titled ” Android Bishop” after the character from Aliens. I love that movie and so I just dropped the “A” for Droid and thought it would fit with my Sci Fi synth wave style.
Could you tell us a joke?
Knock Knock.
Who’s there?
…Go fuck ya self

Thank You Droid Bishop

A big thank you to Droid Bishop for taking the time to answer those questions, and so quickly to. Not bad for a human…

Please head over to Droid Bishop’s Bandcamp page and pick yourself up some of the greatest synthwave music there is.

Interview with Roslyn Moore

This week I am excited to share an interview I did with one of my favourite lady performers at the moment – Roslyn Moore. You should be listening to her music, specifically her awesome album, “Hazy (A Desert Opera)“. I wrote a review of the album recently and can’t recommend it enough.

Roslyn is part of a genre of music known as “Sadcore” and works often with another favourite of mine, “Scarlett Taylor” who I interviewed last month.

Without further ado let’s chat with Roslyn Moore.

The Interview

Please tell us about yourself in as many or as little words as you like.
I’m a bit out there. The more people I come in contact with, the more I realise how differently I seem to view the world than the average person.
Growing up, who were your heroes in music?
I don’t have a specific name to give. Everyone in music was inspiring to me. I always admired anyone who was able to express themselves openly through music. It’s not an easy thing to put yourself out there and be exposed in that way.
Growing up, who were your heroes outside of music?
Because I always felt so unsure of myself, I really admired people who were just the opposite. People who are unapologetically themselves. So many people live their lives based on what other people perceive of them.
Was there any defining moment in your life when you knew that you wanted to write, record and perform music?
I can’t say there was one defining moment. I’ve always been drawn towards music and wanting to make music, but I was always kind of shy about singing and putting myself out there. I never felt I was good enough. As time went on I just stopped caring as much about how I may come across to other people, and started living for myself. I never really had much of a desire to actually get out there and perform, but now that I’ve been able to create music I feel connected with, I’m much more excited to get out there and bring it to life!
Where do you get your creative energy from?
I draw a lot from my personal experiences and how I view the world. I also get a lot of inspiration from films I like.
What is the proudest moment of your career so far?
Performing at the Whiskey a Go-Go in Hollywood, CA and seeing my name on Hollywood Blvd. It was so cool.
What is your favourite Book?
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
What is your favourite Album?
This is such a hard one to answer! I can’t say I have one overall all time favorite album, but rather I go through different phases where I will binge listen to one album and it will be my favorite for that period of time and then I’ll move on from it.
What is your favourite Film?
Another hard one to answer! I love film nearly as much (if not as much) as I do music! So it’s hard to pick one favorite, but I really love Quentin Tarantino’s films. I’d say in general his are my favorite. But I have many favorites!
What is your favourite TV Show?
I don’t want a lot of TV and when I do it’s usually just on Netflix. I’ll watch as much as I can of one show and then move on to the next. I just finished Breaking Bad and I’m now finishing up Narcos. Really love both!
Do you have a favourite film/tv/musical soundtrack?
I can’t say I have a favorite soundtrack, but I do really love and enjoy music in film and television. It has such a large effect on the overall feel of the moment and adds so so much. I can’t wait to have my music accompany film or tv like that.
Are there any new albums you are binge listening to at the moment?
Lately I’ve been binging on Skeleton Tree by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. I’m loving it. It was the perfect soundtrack to my recent trip to California.
You’re walking somewhere and your mp3 player has only a little battery left; You’ve only got time for one more song. What song do you play?
Asking all the hard questions! It would probably depend on the day, but off the top of my head I would pick Comfortably Numb by Pink Floyd
What advice would you give to your younger self?
You are good enough to follow your dreams. Don’t put them off.

A Big Thank you

Thank you so much to Roslyn for taking the time to answer those questions. I always love to learn more about the person behind the music and Roslyn did not disappoint. At the time I contacted her she was actually mid-way into her tour, so I appreciate her fitting this interview into her schedule.

Take a listen to Roslyn’s music over on SoundCloud right this instant. That’s an order.

Interview with Scarlett Taylor

I get really excited when I find a new artist, whose music I can obsess over. I discovered Scarlett Taylor’s music on Soundcloud as part of a playlist. Specifically it was the song “Fucked Up” that grabbed me.

As soon as I had listened to the song, along with it’s album, “Churches“, I immediately wanted to know more about the artist behind the music.

Imagine my complete surprise, and excitement, when Scarlett accepted my request to ask her some questions about herself and her music.

You can listen to Scarlett’s music on her Soundcloud page.

The Interview

Please tell us about yourself in as many or as little words as you like.
Why are the easiest questions always the hardest to answer!
Well I guess I’m in love with music and I have been singing even since before I could talk. I also started writing songs early in my life. I am a highly emotional individual, which is in favor with music because being emotional allows me to tap into deeper feelings and assists me in writing.
I love everything music has to offer, and how performing and recording can take me to a completely different place. There’s really nothing better to me than that.
Growing up, who were your heroes in music?
I didn’t really have a specific person or group that was my hero, but growing up I listened to a variety of different genres of music and artists.
I remember listening to quite a bit of male rock groups, but I also listened to everything in between. One day I’d be listening to The Deftones and the next I’d be listening to opera! I was also heavily influenced by female singers such as Sia, Amy Winehouse, and Stevie Nicks.
What was the first album you remember buying?
I remember the first album I bought was actually Sia – Color The Small One. I remember hearing “Breathe Me” when I was in grade school and was completely entranced. I would listen to that album quite often.
Was there any defining moment in your life when you knew that you wanted to write, record and perform music?
I always knew I was meant to do something artistic. I was heavily involved with theatre throughout school, a total of 8 years. I would always be writing music. In high school, I was very involved with choir and extra-curricular choir groups including jazz singers.
I think I always knew I wanted to sing. It was my senior year of high school when I was involved with a production and sang “School’s Out” that I realised just how powerful my voice was. Around the same time, I had met my current producer by chance at my part-time job. I think it really all came together at once, during some of the first couple sessions I had at my producer’s studio – I realised I wanted to sing, perform, write, and record more than I’ve ever wanted to do anything.
More recently I withdrew from college because I knew I didn’t want to do anything else but music.
Who is your biggest influence in how you approach what you do today?
I would say I’m actually very influenced by other musicians! I am a very observant person and I love learning new things and approaches to doing music, writing, etc. I love to read about other musicians and their stories and how they go about doing things. I watch at least one live performance or interview of another musician every other day.
What is the proudest moment of your career so far?
I would say I have a lot of moments where I’ve been extremely grateful.
I performed at 7th Street Entry on First Avenue a couple nights ago and that was a very memorable experience; being in the same area that a lot of talented musicians have been.
Any time I perform, whether it be at an open mic or bigger venue, I am extremely grateful I get to do what I love and share my music and soul with other people.
I would say one of the proudest moments would be receiving a message from someone telling me I saved their life with my music. That was so rewarding.
What is your favourite Album?
There are so many – I wouldn’t be able to pick just one if I tried!
What is your favourite Film?
The Shining – that movie will never get old to me; I love the suspense and overall concept.The end still gets me every time!
What is your favourite TV Show?
I don’t watch a lot of TV, but I was really into American Horror Story and The Walking Dead for a while.
Are there any new albums you are binge listening to at the moment?
Yes, Honeymoon by Lana Del Rey (2015), and bits of “The Altar” from Banks – I’m impatiently waiting for the full release!
You’re walking somewhere and your mp3 player has only a little battery left; You’ve only got time for one more song. What song do you play?
I’m too indecisive! I’d probably just let the battery die and sing a song (-:
What advice would you give to your younger self?
I would tell myself not to let anyone talk me out of following my dreams.
So often in my life, I’d have people try to put me down or tell me that I couldn’t amount to something big. I remember starting to not believe in myself but soon regained my strength when I started to push myself during high school. Whether it be in theatre or choir; I would push myself to work harder so I could be the best I could possibly be.
I am now a very determined individual because of that. I would tell myself to keep working because it is going to pay off! I would also tell myself to learn a ton of instruments!
If you could ask any person – living or passed – any question, who would it be and what would you ask them?
There’s too many options for that! But I often wish I could ask Amy Winehouse to duet with me and have Nina Simone accompany me on piano. That’d be groovy!
Could you tell us a joke?
My taste in music ranges from “you need to listen to this” to “I know, please do not judge me.”

A big thank you to Scarlett

Thank you very much to Scarlett for sharing those insights into herself and her music. I feel privileged to have discovered her music and I think you will too.

An Interview with Hannah Grace

One of my favourite E.Ps to come out so far has been Hannah Grace’s Mustang. Such great music – and with a good variety in its four songs. I am really looking forward to a full length album by her in the near future.

I have been lucky enough to be able to interview Hannah about herself, her origins and her influences. You can read the answers to some questions I asked her just below.

Interview with Hannah Grace

Please tell us about yourself in as many or as little words as you like.
My name is Hannah Grace, I am 23 years old and from Wales! I love singing and writing songs and I also love cats…
Growing up, who were your heroes in music?
My first hero was definitely Eva Cassidy, from as early as I can remember I just couldn’t stop listening to her. Her voice just connected with me and I have always looked up to her. She is definitely one of the main reasons I started to sing.
Growing up, who were your heroes outside of music?
My parents. I’m so lucky to have such a great parents, they introduced me to so much amazing music over the years, from Fleetwood Mac, to Joni Mitchell, Neil Young and Ella Fitzgerald. All of their encouragement and support has been crucial to my confidence and development as a musician.
What was the first album you remember buying?
Oh dear. Well I’m pretty sure it was Britney Spears or something. But the first CD I owned was a present and that was Eva Cassidy’s “Songbird”.
Was there any defining moment in your life when you knew that you wanted to write, record and perform music?
I always knew I wanted to sing, as it is something that i’ve just always done. But I felt like I really really wanted to write, record and perform my own material when I started listening to songs that I’d wish I’d written. Songs like “A case of you” by Joni, or “Songbird” by Christine McVie – I definitely had a moment of “maybe I could do that” and I’ve found as a singer when you perform your own songs with your own words it can be much more rewarding somehow.
Who is your biggest influence in how you approach what you do today?
There are so many people that influence me today. I’m still inspired by my first loves, like Eva, Joni and Ella. But I’m also influenced by artists like Hozier, Paulo Nutini and Florence and the Machine. I feel like their music is exciting and new but also real, it isn’t too contrived. I am also influenced by friends I have that also do music such as Gabrielle Aplin and Hudson Taylor. We’ve all been friends for a long time, and I admire their music and their attitude and commitment inspires me all the time.
What is the proudest moment of your career so far?
So far I would say releasing my most recent EP ‘Mustang’ has been my proudest. I’m so pleased with how it turned out and I really think that it honestly shows where I am as an artist, both as a songwriter and a singer.
What is your favourite Book?
It’s a very sad story but I love “A Thousand Splendid Suns” – it is such a powerful story – especially for women in the world we live in today. Its a story that crossed my mind a lot and helps me appreciate my own life.
What is your favourite Album?
I have so many! At the moment I am still loving Paulo Nutini’s “Caustic Love” – I love the songs and the production, it’s just amazing. I actually got the opportunity to meet Paolo recently and he was lovely!
What is your favourite Film?
Again, I have so many! I watched Notting Hill recently, and it always leaves me feeling warm and fuzzy – and the soundtrack is really great too!
What is your favourite TV Show?
It has to definitely be Friends. I have seen every episode 100 times.
Do you have a favourite film/tv/musical soundtrack?
I don’t know whether I have a favourite – lots of British films often have good soundtracks, like Notting hill and Love actually. There’s a French film called The Untouchables and the entire soundtrack was written by Ludovico Einaudi which was beautiful.

Thank you Hannah

A big thank you to Hannah for taking the time out to answer those quesitons and to give us an insight into herself and where she has gained her musical roots and inspirations. Like I said before I am really looking forward to her debut album, and I’m sure anybody else who listens to “Mustang” will be to.