photo credit : Nicolai Amter
It’s always awesome to see how technology is uniting artists from all over the world and this weeks Music Monday is a prime example. A few weeks back we were contacted by an artist from the United Kingdom called Stuart Newman. He’d heard about us through twitter or facebook or something and we started chatting about the Usic, technology and the future of music and thought he’d be a great candidate for Music Mondays.
Hey Stuart, thanks for taking the time to chat! So, from the beginning, how’d you get started?
Well, I started by fooling around with instruments early on, as you do, and later things sort of coincided with the whole tech thing. I wanted to experiment with music software, so I bought a computer and a keyboard and mucked around with overdubbing. I cut up songs of other bands and tried things out. My curiosity made me then start focusing on recording my own stuff and I kept going.Then nearing the end of University I started to take things more seriously and moved things forward, recording and promoting and being curious with other aspects in addition to the music and recording. Then things grow and you creatively attack things and work hard and here I am, wherever here is.
You seem to have something of a melancholy feel to a lot of your tunes. Was this always the case or was your style and genre choice more of an evolutionary process? Any big inspirations?
Early on you use what you have so that was me with a guitar and a voice. I would experiment with my voices and guitar and overdub and create. So I made a collection of early more acoustic songs ‘Single But Defective’, and then decided I wanted to move things forward and moved into the recording studio. Throughout the entire process you learn things and you learn about who you are and where you want to go. So there’s an evolution for sure, in creative terms, technical terms and in mentality. I’m fascinated with the way that stuff works, how an artist evolves and the moments in time that can be captured…
I can be inspired by all kinds of things, life, the world, society, people, other bands. It could be anything. So far, I seem to have settled on themes along the lines of the modern world and how it is to be an individual in today’s society… usually with a sad edge.
Looking at your website I can tell you utilize a TON of different tech tools to get your stuff out there. How important do you think that online presence is and how do you use technology to connect with fans?
For me it’s vital. As an artist and as a fan. The workload of what I do is phenomenal, the processes of writing songs, recording, videos, imagery, promotion, interaction, but the real test of all of it is the ‘work’ done when someone comes across your music and that, for me, will be online nine times out of ten. So the real good work happens when someone goes to my website or interacts with my music. The listening, streaming a video, whatever. I have to do my utmost to be as good as I can be when that situation occurs. If someone hits ‘play’ - I have to deliver. If my song comes on, on someone’s iPod - I have to deliver… and you carry that mentality on now more than ever. If someone stumbles on my music, I have a short window to intrigue them. And, as I say, that’s when the real work starts and I guess ‘artistry’ kicks in.
I connect with my fans wherever. It’s a mixture of social networks and email type things. The fan dictates a lot of that. You try to go to where your fans are. I had the idea to give away t-shirts and CDs internationally for free and all that came about through linking a tangible thing with the Internet connection with fans. I’ve sent things to all corners of the world. The net allows for that random cross section of fans. I have big ambitions, so I like having fans from anywhere in the world so I try to think big, in those terms anyway.
Anything you would like share, from new merch to upcoming shows, songs, anything?
Well, I’ve said before in interviews that I love an artist who is of the mentality of: “The-more-you-look-the-more-you-find-the-more-you-want” and I try to be that, so my website is probably the place to send people. My latest EP ‘Bored Of Idiot Chatter’ is currently on free download, so that’s a good place for someone who’s new to me, to start and there are plenty more items of potential interest to dig into after that.
Great! Well thanks again and if anyone out there would like to get better acquainted with the music of Stuart Newman be sure to go to his website by clicking here and remember, if you’re in a band and would like to be featured on Music Mondays be sure to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for submission details.