Yeovil based singer / songwriter Dave Woan has recently released his debut album 'Down Side Up', produced and engineered by Antix Music Network.
The 11 track album shows off the writing and performance talent of the Antix Acoustic regular performer, and is already making movements on social media.
We sent our very own Paul Harmer to catch up with Dave about his latest release.
Paul Harmer: Good afternoon, Dave, thanks for taking the time to speak to us! First things first; this album, Down Side Up, has been a while in the making - What took you so long lol?
Dave Woan: Good afternoon, Paul. Thank you for asking me; it’s a real pleasure. A combination of things really; the pandemic, day job requirements, and other not-for-profit work; all of which conspired to slow everything down.
Paul: Having been in the same room and briefly listening when you were producing some of this album, I think I’m right in saying that some of these songs are based on your travels, your personal life and probably the way the world appears to you after experiencing what we have all done over the last few years; you must have a favourite song to perform and possibly a different one that means the most to you from a writing perspective?
Dave: My stand-out favourite has to be Broken. Lyrically, Broken is all about flowering back to life with the help of another, after a bad time. It’s a theme which affected me on a very personal level, but people have commented on how it talks to all of us, as a reminder of how life can be. The version on the album is marked out by Ben Roberts’ really dark cello performance, so a big thank you to Ben, for setting the tone which absolutely nails the song. Broken is a really powerful song; even after performing it for several years, it still gives me chills, and sometimes it takes all my strength to get through the vocals without breaking down.
Paul: When being interviewed a lot of people will be asked to go down the route of naming their influences, I am guilty of doing that and its just pure lazy.. and to be honest, I will probably be asking that later, but, when you had this album in mind and the production that goes into it, are there elements, styles or artists that you wanted NOT to be like in any way at all?
Dave: Good question, Paul! Writing is very often pinching ideas from other artists. A lot of my inspiration comes from listening parts in a single song, such as the chord progression, and thinking ‘what if it was done another way?’ I then seem to spend a lot of time shaping the song so that it doesn’t sound like someone else’s work!
Paul: This isn’t the first time we have done an interview together as you appeared on the Air 107.2's 'The Lounge' prior to Covid etc and if I remember rightly some of the language was a little 'fruity' which I am always completely happy with... Obviously a LOT has happened since then. so, in your own words (fruity or otherwise) can you tell me how the last few years have affected you, the way you look at the world now and can you tell me one thing that has changed for the better and one thing that has changed for the worst?
Dave: Strangely, nothing has changed in my outlook on life; I’m an ‘optimistic realist’, and philosophical. What goes around tends to come around. I just do the best I can in everything I apply myself to and take each day one at a time. That said; I can get very passionate about life, and occasionally my language can get a bit…‘fruity’!
Paul: It’s good to get an idea of an Artists 'head-space' when talking about their music and as we all know, much has changed, so I assume you have a back catalogue of songs that may have initially been meant for this album that never made it. How did you decide what was going on the album and how many c albums could you potentially make out of those that didn’t make Down Side Up?
Dave: In addition to the eleven on Down Side Up, I have a back catalogue of twenty-five playable songs; enough for another two albums! Down Side Up sparked into life when Frazer asked to record a song Angel, which I’d almost thrown on the scrap heap. Ironically, Angel never made the final cut for Down Side Up, but maybe next time around? Frazer, Tim Fawkes, and I, ran a rather brutal ‘beauty parade’ for all my songs, and the end result was the eleven on Down Side Up.
Paul: Can I recommend 'This Way Up' for the name of the next album of songs that didn’t make it onto Down Side Up lol!!?
Dave: I see what you did there; we’ll have to see!
Paul: You have worked with a few local artists when producing this album. Is there anyone else locally that you haven’t had the chance to work with that you would like to if the opportunity ever arose?
Dave: I’ve already sounded out several musical friends, professionals and amateurs, locally and elsewhere. My former Smoking Gun bandmate and writing partner Si Nicholls is still musically active, and now running a B&B in upstate New York. Despite the distance, we still talk about a collaboration. Si has a superb voice; he writes in a very similar style, and we have co-written several songs, one of which, Locked in Chains made it onto Down Side Up. Check out Saw it On The TV which Si & I co-wrote in 2011 when we were together in Smoking Gun.
Paul: I’m nearly done ;) ...what advice would you give to anyone who is looking to break into the performing business? It is notoriously difficult to 'make it' at an international level but everyone has to start somewhere... Any tips?
Dave: I’m still to set the world on fire (LOL), but as someone who’s still around doing what I love, my advice is: Be true to yourself – write and perform to please yourself. Be passionate, be persistent, and always be listening and learning.
Paul: I know you are proud of this album; what music inspires you to write the way you do and who are your musical heroes?
Dave: The guy who made me rush out and buy my first guitar was blues legend Rory Gallagher. Bruce Springsteen showed me how to mix musical skill with performance, and to tell stories with my words. Others have influenced along the way: Neil Young was a massive influence; as were Nick Drake and John Martyn. REM, Stereophonics, Radiohead, Bowie, Paul Simon, Johnny Flynn, and many others go into the mix, and what comes out (I guess) is an amalgam of these artists.
Paul: Finally, where can people get hold of the album and what are you planning to do next?
Dave: Down Side Up is streaming on Spotify, the CDs are on order, I have promotional gigs coming up at Home Farm Festival, and HMV Yeovil, and of course there’s the launch party gig on 16th June at The Emporium Café, Yeovil. What next? Start putting ideas and musicians together for the second album. Down Side Up started as just me and the acoustic guitar, and the ideas just kept on coming. The second album may be more of a ‘band’ effort
This week, Vicky Limm is releasing her new single, where all profits will go to Alzhiemers UK.
‘Memories’, produced at the Antix Creative Studio in 2021, will be released on 8th April, alongside a JustGiving link where extra donations can be sent directly to the charity.
We spoke to Vicky ahead of her release.
Antix; Hey Vicky, first off, tell us a bit about yourself and what you’ve been up to recently.
Vicky; Hey, so my name is Vicky Limm, I’m 23 years old and I am a dysphagia training assistant for Dorset HealthCare. I’ve been working from home 4 days a week and in my spare time I’ve been doing more gigs and open mic nights in the local area.
Antix; So obviously you’re a songwriter, where did this song come from?
Vicky; just under a year ago, I sadly lost my grandad to Alzheimer’s. Shortly after his passing, I decided to write a song as my own way of grieving and during the process of recording this, I decided I wanted to release it as a charity single to raise money for Alzheimer’s Society. I knew they were a great charity to choose as I have done a fundraiser for them before.
Antix; It’s great that you’ve decided to raise some money for a great cause, I hope the single does well for all involved. Where can we donate to the chosen charity?
Vicky; Here's the link the JustGiving Page, and the single will be out on 8th April”
Antix; So what does the future hold for you as an artist, apart from being booked regularly by Antix?
Vicky; to be honest, I’m not looking for anything huge. I just love performing in my free time, so I just want to keep releasing music and I’d love to get more gigs, at pubs, festivals, you name it!
Antix; Thanks a lot for taking the time out, and best of luck with the single!
Vicky; thank you so much!
We welcome to the Antix Class of 2022 Ben Hadwin - a DJ from Weymouth, who’s making his mark in the scene in a tough and challenging way.
Ben is about to embark on a 36 hour DJ marathon, raising money and awareness for The Veterans Hub Weymouth
We spoke to Ben to get more about the challenge.
Frazer Mitchell; Hey Ben, nice to chat to you today, I hope you’re keeping well! Welcome to the Antix team! Tell us a bit more about yourself as a DJ, your experiences and why you got into DJing in the first place.
Ben Hadwin; Hi Frazer, 1st of all thank you for your support and taking the time to interview me. I’ve always had a love of music which comes from my dad and older brothers, I started out as a bedroom DJ, when my older brother moved away leaving his 1210s at home. From there onwards I first played out in Bar 2012 in Weymouth where Jerry Read and Pete Healy gave me my 1st sets. I then went on to Banus, Bar 118, Ayya , Dolce Vita, Batida, Lizard and most recently The Closet Bar. Last year I played at my 1st festival and looking forward to two more this year. I’ve been very lucky to have been on the same line ups as MistaJam, DJ Spoony, Lovely Laura & SASH this year.
I play a very wide range of music. I believe in reading a crowd and playing to them, My big love is funky house and jacking house.
FM; So the main reason for doing this interview today is about your charity event - tell us a bit more about it!
Ben; Well I work for MKM Building Supplies Weymouth and each year we help support a charity or local community project, this year we have chosen The Veterans Hub Weymouth.
So I’ve decided to do a nonstop 36 hour DJ set, I know I’m mad. This will take place 05/03/22 09:00 - 06/03/22 21.00. The venue will close Saturday midnight to public and re open in the morning, don’t panic we will be live streaming at that point.
I’ll explain why I’m doing the event
Coming from a military family and having close friends that have served I know first hand what The Veterans Hub can do. Most recently my stepdad serving with the Royal Engineers having been based in northern Ireland and the Falkland's , a close colleague of mine Jason Smith serving with the Royal Logistics Corp in Bosnia, where he tragically lost one of his legs.
One of my first memories was listening to my Great Uncle Ken who was a para trooper during WW2, where his was awarded the Legion d’Honneur for the liberation of France.
Listening to horrendous stories from My Great Uncle Pete who fought in Burma campaign. It was one of the most magnificent – and arduous – feats of arms in military history. A million men, from more than 20 nations, fighting a powerful and implacable foe through thousands of miles of intractable, malaria-ridden jungle, doggedly ploughing on, despite suffering a series of shattering early reverses.. Where he was awarded the Burma star.
FM; That's an incredible story, and a very selfless thing for you to do. So as you’re playing for 36 hours, what sort of music can we expect from you throughout? Where do you find that many tracks, and will you be taking requests?
Ben; seeing that it’s 36 hours I’ll be playing a wide range of music from ABBA to Paul van Dyke, I have no problem with requests on this occasion. I’ll be playing off turntables, CDJs and usb to make sure I have enough music and cover if anything goes down. I must also say thank you to Richard Swannie & Pete Healey for the PA and equipment.
FM; Will this be open to the public? Will we be able to come and support you, or will there be an online stream of the event?
Ben; Absolutely this will be open to the public, it will be held at the Lugger Inn Chickerell. The venue will close to public at a certain point, this is when live streaming will happen.
FM; Most importantly, where can we donate to the worthy cause? I hear you’re looking for raffle prizes to give away too?
Ben; you can donate on my just giving page also we will have collections on the weekend with raffles, face painting etc going on. I would love more raffle prizes, I have had a few already which has been greatly received.
You will also be able to pop into MKM in Weymouth where they will have a collection tin out.
FM; Well best of luck to you Ben, I hope it all goes really well for you; you’re much braver than I am!
Ben; Thank you Frazer for the support and taking the time to interview me. Could I say a huge thank you to MKM for the help and support with the event.
Another massive thank you to Liam Coles of the Lugger for holding the event.
And of course The Veterans Hub for everything they do for veterans. And a big thank you to all that is supporting me throughout the event.
Make sure you follow the journey over on Facebook and at the Lugger's Arms, in Weymouth Dorset, starting on the 5th March 2022.
Some good news to report today, as Cal Shortland, AKA Vice Wolfpack, enters the first stages of a competition to find the next bassist for glam rock band Steel Panther.
When I first saw the news break on Facebook, I couldn’t think of a better person suited for the role. If you’ve ever seen Snakebyte live, you’ll understand that all 4 members bring a front-man performance to their sets, and you’ll also know that Callum is one of the best technical bassists on the live local music circuit.
We caught up with Cal ahead of his competition.
Frazer Mitchell; Hey Cal, nice to catch up with you. First off, tell us a bit more about Snakebyte and how you first got into the glam rock scene.
Callum Shortland; Thanks for having me, it’s a real pleasure. So I’ve always loved heavy rock from an early age since being around a real music loving family. I ventured and explored metal as a teenager and plunged myself into the realms of glam rock by listening to various artists, but my love grew when our drummer in Snakebyte (Hanson) introduced me to Steel Panther. I was blown away by the music, the talent and the song writing. I loved that the sound was still going and it just clicked for me. Then me and Hanson decided we wanted to play and perform that style of music and Snakebyte was born. We asked around our college friends, who also enjoyed that style of music and Snakebyte was born. Ever since then, we drove it as far as we could get it and it has become what it is now due to the incredible hard work the guys and myself have put into it.
FM; You all have different glam rock stage names for Snakebyte, where did Vice Wolfpack come from?
Cal; So Vice Wolfpack came from our first guitarist who left for his own advernture in the real early days, and cause we loved him, I kept the name on. For its true origin, that will forever remain a mystery.
FM; It’s not just Snakebyte you’ve been in, you’ve also been the bassist for a number of bands including Black River Sinners (you may have to help me out here!)
Cal; So I’ve had the pleasure and been incredibly fortunate to have played in a few bands. Apherium was my first band which are a Metal band that came from Yeovil, Echo of Us which was the remnants from Apherium which is a synth/pop band. I’ve been in a country band called the Black River Sinners, which had one of the most impressive line ups. I also stood in for The Animal Urges for a while which was a lot of fun.
FM; One gig I specifically remember was Christmas Light Switch On in Yeovil one year where you guys absolutely smashed it. What I remember from that gig especially is that it’s not necessarily one person leading the way, like it is in most bands, you are all performers in your own right, and all being a front man performance element to your sets. You especially always seem to be absolutely loving your time on stage. Tell us more about how you approach a live set with the other Snakebyte lads and how you get so hyped for a gig.
Cal; We just have fun, we don’t take it seriously but we do if that makes sense. We trust one another and always put the band first. I think that’s what makes it special, there isn’t any ego in the band, we all want to play the music we love with one another. And also we try and make one another laugh every time we take to the stage. It’s an experience unlike any other and I’m incredibly lucky to have shared the stage with the guys.
FM; So talk to me the Steel Panther competition - what’s the details and how do we #GetInvolved?
Cal; (voting links, etc) So I’ve got through to the semi-finals of a competition where Steel Panther are selecting their new bassist out of 34 other bassists. My date for voting is on December 16th. So all you need to do to support me is head over to this link on the date and vote for me.
FM; I guess from your previous experience that this opportunity would mean a lot to you - just tell us what it would mean to get through to the next stages, and ultimately win the competition
Cal; It would be life changing. Not only would it allow me to play with one of the biggest rock/metal bands around, but also have a chance to life a dream of touring, seeing the world and experiencing the music world. I’m already incredibly humbled by being selected, I’m thankful for the chance and opportunity especially as I struggle to really value my playing ability.
FM; Well we’re all behind you Cal, it’s a great opportunity and one I really hope fans of Snakebyte and the local music scene can really get behind. I wish you the best of luck, and hope I get some free tickets when you’re part of the band! 😉
Cal; Thank you so much, appreciate the support as always and I’ll make sure to hook you up with some tickets. Keep up the great work as usual
Earlier this year, we interviewed Jack Saunders, a 22 year old singer / songwriter from Yeovil. We spoke about the ups and downs of the music scene in recent times, the Coronavirus Outbreak, and we discussed his latest single ‘Meet At The Light’ (view the article here).
Today, we talk again to Jack Saunders, after his recent visit to Antix; Creative Studios, in Weymouth, where he produced his latest single ‘My Mistake’.
Frazer Mitchell; Hi Jack, nice to talk to you again. I hope you’ve been keeping well. Are you looking forward to the big reopening after the many lockdowns?
Jack Saunders; Hi Frazer, nice to hear from you! Yeah, I'm really excited to be honest! It's felt like a long time coming, and I can't wait to get back performing!
FM; So, let’s discuss your latest single, ‘My Mistake’. I was really pleased you came to us to get your next song produced, and I really hope you’re happy with the outcome!
Jack; I'm so happy with the outcome! I had heard good things about recording with yourself from various artists, so was glad to finally work with yourself!
FM; That's nice to hear! First of all, what’s the song about? What songs and which artists were your inspiration behind your latest single?
Jack; So, the song is about a moment I had a couple of years ago. Pretty much I said something I shouldn't have said, and it was one of those moments where the words leave your mouth, and you realise that you really shouldn't have said it. In regards to inspiration, I'm not sure. I guess I was inspired a little by John Frusciante, but really I just looped the chord progression and sung what I thought made sense to sing over the top of it which was the hook in the chorus. I wanted to make something that was close to the type of music that I listen to on a daily basis. I feel like My Mistake is closer to the type of music that I want to make anyway, and I wanted to show people that this is the type of music that they can expect from me and not things like Meet At The Light.
FM; This was your first opportunity to come to the new Antix; Creative Studio we’ve recently opened. How did you find the recording process?
Jack; It was different than anything I had experienced before. I didn't really know what to expect! But I felt like the process was very easy and stress-free. I liked how we recorded the vocals, and the guidance was really helpful and constructive! It took a couple of attempts to get the sound right, but we both pushed through it and in summery, it was a lot of fun! I'm really pleased with the final product! I'm very excited to come back and record the next few songs!
FM; It was a really good experience producing your single, because for me it sounded like a cross between a Mumford & Sons track, as well as a bit of Coldplay too. I especially loved the layering of the vocals to make a ‘choir’. It’s not a genre I’ve really had the opportunity to work with, so I appreciate you coming down. I’m really pleased with the outcome, and I hope you are too?
Jack; Yeah, I can kind of hear those two artists in the song now that you say it! To be honest, it was a first for both of us. The previous song I recorded was very mellow and slow, where as this one was very fast, upbeat and gave me a chance to really put down all the ideas in my head which I couldn't do with 'Meet At The Light'. But I'm very, very happy with how the song ended up and I can't thank you enough for your patience and I can't wait for people to hear it!
FM; Thanks again for coming down to the studio, and I hope to see you soon again either at a gig, or in the studio.
Jack; Thanks again Frazer! See you soon!
You can stream 'My Mistake' on Spotify here.
May is now upon us, and it is less than 2 months until things reopen, with no restrictions.
It’s fair to say there is a buzz around the music scene about things reopening, and artists are beginning to release new music in readiness for (hopefully) a summer to remember.
We kickstart May’s new music month with South Coast based dance music producer and DJ, Connor Watling, with his new single out on 10th May called Higher (Amen). A track I’ve had in my armour for many years at festival gigs, nightclubs, even the occasional wedding. This really is something special. With an insanely catchy rhythm, a haunting spoken vocal; it really is a ‘wow’ track.
We speak to Connor Watling about his latest release.
Frazer Mitchell; Hi Connor, I must say it’s been a very long time since I’ve seen you, especially as we saw each other on the semi regular before! How have the last 12 months been for you?
Connor Watling; Frazer I must say the last 12 months of my life have been something of a rollercoaster - I’ve had lots of things change from my personal life to my professional work life… I’ve spent a long time around some great people in the lockdowns, I was fortunate enough to have influences like Jamie Hayes Jones - Founder of Launch Interactions (Seeing him build his Hybrid event app company into virtual events inspired me to take my DJing virtually) I’d like to think the virtual nightclub sets I’ve done with WW Events & Loud Audio & The Rave Bunker & Air 107.2 kept me sane in terms of playing music.
FM; So this track, Higher (Amen), I’ve had it literally for years. Why are you releasing it now after so long? And why did it take you so long?
Connor: The track has been ready since April last year however….There’s been no real time I’ve wanted to release it and what with getting festival bookings this year already I thought I’d jazz up the package for prospective promoters *wink wink*
FM; Obviously this has been a tough year for you, going from gigging at least twice every weekend, to virtually 0 gigs in the last 12 months, how has that been for you? What have you been doing to pass the time?
Connor; I’ve been working on my own businesses - most people think I’m a full time DJ however I’m also a UI/UX Software and Web Designer, this is what pays the bills...also I’ve been working with a few company’s that are planning events ahead of time which is giving me motivation to get up and not pay about all day.
FM; What does the future look like for you as a producer / DJ? I’ve noticed some people who used to gig a lot aren’t as interested in gigging as much, yet others are even more eager to get out there again; how do you feel about the near future?
Connor; I’m still very young I’d like to think so - I’m hoping I’ve got a good few years of pressing play left in me, I’ve still got some amazing projects with some very influential people in the music industry which are in need of finishing/developing. I’m hopeful for summer however when I receive a booking as “Provisional and unfortunately we can’t pay you a deposit” I start to think maybe this isn’t the year for DJs.
FM; Something I’ve been asking a fair few people in similar interviews is about their mental health - people in the music industry are often very social people, and to have that taken away from them for such a long time can definitely take it’s toll. Is this something that you’ve had to deal with over the last 12 months?
Connor; If Im completely open and honest - I was diagnosed with asperges syndrome when I was about 7 years old, this isn’t something that’s ever really effected me badly it’s just been my secret power I suppose, I was very fortunate to have great education and influential teachers and ‘grown ups’ which taught me the best way of communicating. Throughout lockdown and this crappy tier system my routine has been thrown all over the place and I don’t have much of a routine at all anymore. This has led me to some dark places however I’ve always had some form of normality to ground myself with whether that be activities such as set prep or production or going for a long old walk up a big hill.
FM; Thanks so much for chatting with me today Connor, and no doubt I’ll see you soon!
Connor; No problem! I wish this was more of a two way interview - I’d like to ask you all these questions back 😂 I miss playing with you *ooo errr* I’m sure we’ll have a spin this summer somewhere ❤️🙏🏼🔥
You can listen to Higher (Amen) by Connor Watling on 10th May.
In March 2021, there was a huge amount of new and amazing music being produced and released by artists across the South West.
The momentum hasn’t stopped as we head into April. This week, we shine a light on Second Run, a newly formed pop / punk band from Yeovil, who came to us to record their debut music video “Without You”. Since then, they’ve gone on to release their first EP “Beyond All Hope”.
Frazer Mitchell; Hi guys, hope you’re keeping well! Was great meeting you all at the video shoot too. Tell the readers a bit more about Second Run, who you are and what brought you 3 together.
Second Run; Well Steve and Ross have been in previous bands and decided through lockdown to create a new project
FM; So you guys just released your debut EP “Beyond All Hope” - how did that come about? Where was it recorded?
Second Run; The whole EP and idea came through lockdown where songs were created and written, bounced back and forth between members and James Herron who mixed and mastered the tracks.
FM; You guys have a great sound, it’s refreshing hearing a band releasing new original material, especially in this genre as it seems coronavirus has killed the band scene for the time being. What’s the next steps for Second Run once restrictions are lifted?
Second Run; The EP has been done and dusted, a lot of positive feedback, currently creating the physical set list. We welcome our friend Mark on bass and we can't wait to perform our first live gig to you all where we will be touring new original punk rock material, keep real and we can't wait to perform for you all.
FM; Thanks a lot for chatting with us today, best of luck for the near future!
Second Run; we appreciate the time and all the effort Antix has put in to the promotion and recording of the video. We respect the time you guys put in to local and original music.
March of 2021 saw a rush of new music from local artists. As April develops, the stream of original music has been steady, and we have another brand new EP to showcase today.
This week, we shine a light on Yeovil producer and musician Jake Lotus (real name Jake Denney), with his newly released 7 track EP “Nelson”. We spoke to him earlier this week.
Frazer Mitchell; Hi Jake, hope you’re keeping well, and congratulations on your EP.
Jake Lotus; Aloha Frazer! Thank you kindly. It’s a relief to finally get it out there.
FM; I was quite excited when I heard you were releasing an EP. I’ve always been a fan of your work, and the diversity of your music. From Murmur, a house banger (if you haven’t heard it, you really must!) to some of your layered vocals, Bon Iver style. It feels this is yet another step away from one particular genre for you?
Jake; Yeah, I would say so. I don’t really think in terms of genres anymore to be honest; sometimes the contrarian in me likes to deliberately work in opposition to a trend - like a genre or what-have-you - but more often than not I’m just making songs I’d like to hear.
FM; So talk to us Nelson. First off, why did you pick that name? How did the EP come about?
Jake; Nelson is very autobiographical. Me and my cousin moved into a flat on Nelson Way (hence the name), with hopes of creating a music project together, but various things (like work, schedules, personal issues and so on) meant we never actually collaborated. It genuinely made me despondent and I felt very lost, but then I listened to the audiobook of ‘Perfect Sound Whatever’ by James Acaster, about all these little known albums of 2016. Hearing all these stories - big and small - about their creations made me realise that THIS was what the EP should be about. THIS was the real story. Hope becomes frustration becomes despair becomes hope again. It was a blessing in disguise.
FM; It’s fair to say that the EP goes in completely different directions, in terms of genre. I first heard this properly on a late night drive, and it’s perfect for that atmosphere. Who were your influences when producing the EP?
Jake; Björk and Kate Bush are always there helping in some way or another. Björk’s adventurousness and eclecticism, and Kate Bush’s storytelling and sensitivity. They inform pretty much all my music. But also people like Bon Iver, Mount Eerie, 100 Gecs, and JPEGMAFIA in particular was a big inspiration. Unlike me, he makes very abrasive hip-hop, but he writes, produces, mixes and masters his own stuff. Proper in-house and singular. For better or worse, I wanted to do the same.
FM; What was the process behind producing the EP? Did you start with lyrics, or build the production up and work from there?
Jake; Before I worked out the structure and details of Nelson, I had four of the songs half-written as instrumentals/textures. Once I’d worked out the story arc, there were 3 tracks I needed to write to connect the others up. The actual writing of the songs didn’t take too long, and those new tracks effectively being written to a brief made them easier to do. I tend to go with my first set of written lyrics for a song. I rarely re-write or finesse them, overthinking lyrics can zap them of character sometimes. Same with melodies actually. If a melody sounds a bit different or vaguely interesting at least, I just go with it and don’t alter it too much. Really, it was producing it (and all the post-production) that took me forever.
FM; So where did you produce the EP? What instruments or software did you turn to most to create these sounds?
Jake; So it was pretty much all written in Logic Pro. Two of the tracks started on GarageBand on my phone, and then migrated to Logic, where I finished them. Drive has a little bit of actual fuzzed bass guitar, Pearls has multi-tracked acoustic guitars, and for the first two tracks I recorded household noises (my car keys, brushing my teeth, hitting my clothes horse with drum sticks, flicking light switches on and off, etc) and sampled them into beats. But all the synths are sounds you can find in Logic that I’d modified and coated with effects and things. I was definitely trying to avoid it sounding MIDI-y. All the vocals were recorded in the flat that the EP’s about as well, in different rooms. I think it would’ve been perverse to do the vocals in a professional booth. And yeah, I also mixed and mastered it in Logic as well. That was the real lesson of the project. It’s always good to remind yourself how little you know.
FM; Great chatting to you Jake, hopefully I’ll be seeing you soon once restrictions are lifted!
Jake; Cheers, you too! And hopefully the next few projects don’t take as long as this one!
You can check out Jake’s latest EP “Nelson” here.
March is definitely turning into ‘new music month’ this year, and house music fans are treated to a surprise release from popular Yeovil based DJ Sheridan Knight.
Sheridan bounced on the scene in 2019 with DJ performances across the festival season, and a fully booked 2020 which has had to be postponed due to Covid, the 29 year old is bouncing back on the scene with a brand new single ‘One Shot’.
Personally, I’ve had this track for a while, and haven’t had chance to play it anywhere other than radio, yet I know this song will go down well in the clubs and festival circuit - One Shot is simply put a tech house banger - expertly mixed, beautifully mastered, and very, very bouncy, and is set for release 12th March.
We talk to Sheridan Knight, the guy behind the new track.
Frazer Mitchell; Sheridan, nice to speak to you, it’s certainly been a while!
Sheridan Knight; Yes Frazer! Great to speak to you too. We’ve been meaning to do this for sometime, thank you for having me.
FM; So where to begin - lets start off by talking Covid, how much of an affect has lockdown had on your gigs and performances you were booked for?
SK; Covid has had a huge affect on my gigs and performances, I had been booked in several countries at some top party destinations including Zante, Kavos, Aiya Napa and Albufeira which all had to be cancelled due to the pandemic along with several festivals and clubs along the way, fortunately it has allowed me to focus on production which I may not have had as much time to focus on if my 2020 booking had happened.
FM; Talk to me about One Shot, how did it come about?
SK; I’d finished a Facebook live stream on Facebook and felt I wanted something more of my own to play so I started playing around with different sounds and managed to come up with One Shot. Following creating the song thankfully I got signed to a record label Charlie Funk House.
FM; So let’s talk about production the production side of things - where did this one come from? What’s your set up like?
SK; I’ve always played around with music production from a young age but decided I wanted to really go for it now I haven’t got any gigs booked in which allowed me to dedicate most of my time on production. I started on logic with my laptop but have now invested in more and more equipment and have now just finished my own studio
FM; Thanks Sheridan for chatting with us today, keep up the good music, what’s next for you as a DJ / Producer?
SK; thanks for having me Frazer it’s been a pleasure! I have 5 songs now including One Shot so I’ve been a busy bee. New songs to come following One Shot so keep your eyes peeled!
Check out One Shot HERE****
INTERVIEW; We speak to YEOVIL Chamber of Commerce PRESIDENT Dave Woan about the future of the local music scene.
The Future of Live Music is still unclear in the first weeks of March, but it’s fair to say plans are being made for events later in the summer.
However, there have been many cancelled events already, including the likes of Glastonbury, Home Farm Fest and Abbey Hill Steam Rally.
We spoke to the Chamber of Commerce in Yeovil and regular Antix performer Dave Woan, about the current and future music scene.
Frazer Mitchell: Hi Dave, I hope you’ve been keeping well!
Dave Woan: Thanks Frazer; it’s good to hear from you again, as always. Although I’m incredibly busy in my day job, my gig opportunities have pretty much stalled; although I’m still putting in around an hour a day into practicing and pushing musical ideas around.
FM: That's great to hear. First of all, what have you been up to since the pandemic started? Has this time off inspired you to write more songs?
DW: I was fortune enough to squeeze a trip to New Zealand in January & February 2020. We visited relatives, travelled around, and managed to just get back to the UK before lockdown happened. The time in New Zealand, and the head space it offered, inspired me to write several sets of lyrics, two of which have turned into songs, which I’ve already played live at a couple of 2020 appearances between lockdowns. Despite the pandemic experience dominating most of our lives since March 2020, only one song inspired by lockdown materialised; the early lockdown experience was like living on the set of a weirdly real sci-fi movie, and inspired ‘You’re In This Movie’, a first-person tale of someone pleading with a less-than-conscientious friend, to stay safe.
FM: What I’d really like to talk to you about is the current state of the local music scene - obviously things were very active before all of this, and now they’re the complete opposite. What advice would you give to local musicians at a time like this?
DW: Take each day at a time; set realistic expectations, and don’t wish too hard. The good days will return – we just don’t know when. Adapt and explore the changed circumstances. It’s like I’m in a long, curved tunnel; the light behind me has disappeared from view, and I haven’t quite got to the point where the curve allows me to see the light in front of me. I keep practicing my art; even though opportunities for gigs are rare, I always need to stay on top of my game. If lockdown lifts tomorrow, I know I’ll be ‘gig-fit’.
FM; Some of the local festivals have already announced they will be postponing for yet another year, Home Farm Fest, Glastonbury Festival, Abbey Hill Steam Rally, yet some like Flashback are still planning to go ahead this year. What’s your thoughts on the festivals having to postpone for 2 years?
DW: As someone who organises corporate events, I understand the impact of lockdown. Try not to get upset with the organisers; they and festival stall-holders invest time, effort and usually a lot of money, only to see it all evaporate, due to something which is entirely out of anyone’s control. Apart from the loss of opportunity to create more happy memories, all the festival-goers lose is the cost of their ticket. As a regular attendee at Home Farm near Yeovil, I used to joke: “No year would be complete without Home Farm.” Here we are now looking at the second consecutive cancellation. Sure, I’m upset, but I'll just have to find something else to do on that first weekend in June.
FM: So looking a couple of steps into the future, into a post covid world. What do you think we, as a music industry, should be doing now, to make sure the industry isn’t as badly affected when we’re all allowed out?
DW: Tough question. A lot of the responsibility lies with musicians and promoters; no one is to blame here, and the fans remain hungry to see the artists. For enthusiastic amateurs like myself, I just have to keep practicing, with the cushion of a day job to meet the bills. For musicians whose livelihood depends on their art, and the ability to perform in front of an audience, technology can be used. I’m aware of some very creative use of technology; such as performance on stage in a hall full of screens, with the audience paying to watch and interact via the Zoom link. Not ideal, but needs must. As humans we’re incredibly inventive and adaptive, musicians are also going live from home, charging people to watch, and bands have been recording from separate locations for several years. As you know, I’ve been involved in a handful of your Antix virtual open mic sessions, which were incredibly good fun – are there any more planned? If the commercial and logistical opportunities are given airspace, and we harness the technology, when the good days return, all we have to do is replace the screens with the people again, and the audience is back in the same room as the performers.
FM; There aren't any Antix Virtual Open Mic Sessions - interestingly, we found there was a real need for them, and then everyone seemed to be 'going live' and the market was very flooded very quickly.
There have been a lot of musicians who have turned to social media, live streaming since last March due to the lack of gigs. Is there anyone that has caught your eye? Someone, or a band you think we should be listening to?
DW: Check out the soulful guitarist/vocalist Michael Kiwanuka and Saint Vincent, the ‘Talking Heads for the twenty-first century’. These are just two of the artists I’ve gotten into since seeing them on TV during lockdown. Another artist who is inspiring my writing and playing is the young English folk-inspired songsmith (and actor) Johnny Flynn, seven albums under his belt, a great voice and guitar technique. Locally, I’ve been listening to Juniper Roots, Jack Saunders, Mel Muryn, and Bruce Soord’s prog band The Pineapple Thief. There’s plenty going on. Musicians are harnessing their ideas and inspirations; the different circumstances are unearthing some great music that I may have otherwise missed.
FM: Thanks a lot for chatting with us, hopefully see you in the very near future!
DW: Thanks Frazer, great to hear from you!
Frazer Mitchell - Producer, DJ, and Events Coordinator at Antix Music Network