In The Middle with Louis Berry

Last Wednesday we had the opportunity to catch Louis Berry before his gig at The Wardrobe on the same day that Annie Mac interviewed him.

Tonight is the last day of your tour, how has it been?

It’s been brilliant! I’m gonna say my favourite show was Glasgow, it was mental! It was almost like a Liverpool gig; there it’s like a road block, sells out in seconds and people are fighting over tickets, it’s crazy. Glasgow was like that – it sold out, there were loads of people dancing. Nottingham was good, I mean they were all good.

You were here supporting Sunset Sons, do you like touring with bands of different genres?

Definitely, it’s a different kind of music. What I’ve done is I signed a publishing deal at my first gig and then I signed a record deal at my second, so I had to do it all backwards and build a fan base.

We caught your set at Truck, how was the rest of the festival season?

I liked that festival it was more chilled out, not too scatty. Loads of festivals have been good, I had to cancel a few ‘cause I got sick, it was nasty. I’ve also done my first few festivals abroad as well, I’m going back to Holland next week. That should be good!

Is travelling something you’ve always wanted to do?

Definitely, where I’m from it’s a massive achievement to even be able to go to different cities and abroad, especially to America and Europe.

Radio 1 have been loving your music at the moment, is it weird tuning into the radio and hearing your songs?

Yeah, I’ve always been confident in myself that I will get to that point anyway, but at the same time you can’t beat the feeling of just driving around and hearing yourself on the radio – it’s fantastic.

So where do you think your music will take you?

I don’t want to be an artist; I want to be an icon! I don’t want to be just a standard artist who brings three songs out and disappears, I’m here to talk about some real stuff, about world matters. There’s a lot of songs that are going to be on the album that aren’t for radio that are the really deep songs. I’m challenging people and protesting at the same time. You know, when did music stop protesting? Can you tell me someone now that protests in music, can you tell me anyone now that speaks about real stuff?

There are some niche indie rock bands I guess…

That’s what I mean, it’s not on a massive scale, it’s because they only dip their toe in, they’re scared to say stuff in case they don’t get radio play. I don’t care about that; I just want my music to live longer than me. If people are listening to it in 50 years’ time and get a sense of the times. A massive war could break out now, World War Three is like that close away (click fingers) if something like that happened people are gonna ask, “What represented those times?” and then you look back and what would you find? Justin Bieber! I like some of Bieber’s songs, it is good to sing along to. In music now if you want a hit you just write a nursery rhyme and put a repetitive melody on a synthesizer and sing like a 14-year-old boy.

Do you look back at any of the 60s artists which protest?

Bob Dylan and Cash people like that made their mark, even 2Pac for example. He was very real whether you like that kinda music or not he spoke about the truth. I like the idea of hiding meanings within the music that people don’t get until you buy the album.

Is the album similar musically to what we’ve already heard?

No, not all of it. A lot of it is completely different to what you’ve heard already, it’s a lot of different sounds going on. I like the idea of being able to do what everyone else does but better. We’ve been holding some of our best songs back, there are some soul songs, like pop soul, with pianos, choirs and string sections. It’s gonna be big, yeah!

Amy Brown & Jenny Pudney

(Image: Bodega)

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