Monday, 20 January 2014

YOU ARE WHO YOU ARE: An exclusive interview with folk singer-songwriter Dan Poole!

Below is our interview with Dan Poole.
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What was your first musical memory and what pushed you towards pursuing a career in the record industry?
"I suppose my first musical memory consisted of mum and dad putting on a Stereophonics record, my little brother would grab the toy guitar, my big brother would turn the potty upside down to create a drum and I would grab the hair brush and then we’d jam out to 'More Life In A Tramps Vest'; but I suppose I didn’t really start to learn how to play until I found an old 25 key piano in my dads room that I sat and played all day long, teaching myself a new song every day."
What kind of records were on around the house when you were younger and would you say that these records still have an influence on your music today?
"My parents always put on original doo wop bands such as The Clovers, The Crests, The Penguins and a lot of rock 'n' roll stuff like The Beatles and Elvis. This music definitely taught me a lot about music, probably the same knowledge that I use today when I write songs."
Had you been involved with any other bands or projects prior to becoming a solo artist as Dan Poole?
"I was the bass player in a covers band called Hometown Heroes that was very different to what I actually do but it was all good fun."
Why did you choose to become a solo artist instead of forming a band?
"I have no friends to form a band with! I suppose I loved writing my own material and trying to empathize that with other band mates is a very hard thing to do, especially when you want the music to sound a certain way."
How would you describe the sound of Dan Poole?
"I suppose I would call my music folk with a sense of realism. There's a story behind every song, there's no sense of wonder about my songs, they say it how it is, whether it's offensive or polite, you’ll understand what it means."
What instruments do you play when performing your music?
"Acoustic guitar, although I would like to start playing a little bit of piano in the future."
You take pride in the fact that you are a completely DIY artist. Why have you chosen to do everything yourself instead of getting in professional photographers to take shots or producers to record with?
"Mainly, it’s cheaper! I know my way around a good recording and what will sound good in the studio, so why not save myself some money and record it myself. There’s no shame in starting out all by yourself, every band has been there."
Do you find that this approach makes the music making process easier and less pressurised?
"It can become hard organizing your own gigs and trying to send out emails to absolutely everyone asking for support slots but it can also be very rewarding when you get up on stage and there’s a crowd that have come especially to see you; it pays off."
You have made a number of your songs available online. One of these is ‘You Are Who You Are'. What is this song about and what influenced it?
"There seems to be an evidential growth of vintage fashion in the last few years, some I can accept, some I can’t. Fashion and pop culture has always been around, but there seems to be an incredible irony about taking a picture on an iPhone (a piece of technology far beyond the technology of the seventies or eighties) of yourself wearing some vintage jeans that you bought from a charity shop and adding a filter to it to make it seem like it belonged in the past. The song is basically ripping into every single person that has ever existed; it's not saying “don’t wear these clothes because I don’t like it,’ it’s saying that everyone is hipster, whether you like it or not."
Your debut EP is called ‘Anger’. Why did you choose this title?
"For the fact every song on the EP is a about a hate for something; a hate for pop culture, nights out, love songs and a girl called Caitlyn."
Do you have any 'rituals' before going on stage?
"I always like to listen to some good music, just on my own without any distractions. It’s usually my favourite song at the time."
Any live dates coming up?
"Yes playing live is my favourite thing to do so all my dates can be found on my facebook page."
Any new songs in the pipeline?
"I’m on a writing streak at the moment, so a few final touches to some songs and they’ll be available soon."
When can fans be expecting the next release?
"I’m full of surprises so you’ll have to wait and see."
Who would be your dream collaboration?
"The Lumineers (feat Dan Poole)."
Who would be in your dream super group?
"Tim Minchin on piano, John Mayer on guitar, Nate Reuss on vocals, Animal (The Muppets) on drums and Tupac Shakur on tuba."
Favourite Beatle?
"Stuart Sutcliffe."
Favourite band?
"Four Year Strong."
Favourite new band?
"The Lumineers."
Favourite song?
"Sigh No More, Mumford & Sons."
Favourite album?
"Love Ire and Song, Frank Turner."
Vinyl, CD or download?
Style icon?
"Boy George."
Favourite clothing brand?
"Whatever fits me."
Favourite film?
"It's A Wonderful Life."
Favourite TV show?
Who would play you in a film of your life?
"John Hurt."
Favourite food?
Football team?
Hope you enjoyed this feature on Dan Poole! Check out our previous feature on Vincent Vocoder Voice!
Check out Dan Poole here -
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