Richard Maule is a London based folk/rhythm & blues singer who loves his 'loopy pedal' (not the technical name) and iPad, he sent me some really cool music to check out a little while ago and I liked it so much, I invited him to take part in our 'Introducing' feature where the stars of tomorrow have cut their teeth.
Remember Sam Smith? Ella Eyre? Rae Morris? none of these have taken it upon themselves to reply to my begging emails and look where they are! still attending open mic nights in Walthamstow, begging for a night on a strangers couch, anyway, I digress.....
We met up with Richard in a good old traditional London boozer where we ordered 2 pints of 'mild', sat down in a booth and had a good old chat about desert island discs, cool hangouts in Camden and Bill Withers, here's how we got on....
Please take a couple of minutes to introduce yourself and tell us about your music….
I'm a Folk/rhythm and blues artist from London, drawing upon influences such as Hozier, Damien Rice, Lumineers and a plethora of other artists. My songs are charged with emotion and I let it all go on stage with an explosive performance captivating my audience.
I enjoyed the video for ‘Sailors Son’, where was this filmed and who did you use to put it together?
Sailor's Son was great fun to film! I had collaborated with various music video professionals before. With Sailor's Son I wanted it to be more personal. I filmed a lot myself of various parts of nature in places I'd visited through out the year. Things that caught my eye. Most of the scenes on the river were filmed in Putney/Chiswick near my home.
When did you acquire your ‘Loop Station’ pedal thingy and what was the first song you recorded with it?
I've had it for a few years now. I saw a number if artists live using it and loved the dynamics and depth you could create. I tried using it on many different songs to experiment with the pedal and get a feel for it. It's now one of many brushes I can use to create a song.
You’re a Folk/Rhythm and Blues artist from London, no doubt there are countless acts of this genre in the capital, how do you try to stand out from the rest?
There so many artist in multiple genres trying to get there heads above the masses. I use a kick drum, iPad, synth/keyboard, guitars, loop station, samples and a tambourine. I'm the modern one man band. This I think makes my performance different to many.
What classic song would you have liked to have recorded and why?
Grandma's hands by Bill Withers. Amazing vocals, intimate lyrics and a unique song. Not many songs written about grandma's these days!
If you could only listen to 3 albums until the end of time, which would they be and why?
- Nina Simone - Greatest Hits
- Ludovic Enaudi - Una Mattina
- Nick Mulvey - Fever to the Form
Your version of Silent Night is simply superb, I’d rather listen to this than a choir, ever thought about covering classic carols and doing a festive concert with a full backing choir? (15% commission for ideas BTW!)
Ha! If you can set me up a big venue I'll get working on the set list!
Cast your mind back to the first ever gig you attended, who was it, when was it, where was it and what are your memories from the show?
first one I remember is seeing Michael Jackson on the dangerous tour. Epic.
What was the last gig you attended (as a member of the audience)?
London is a fascinating city for music, where would you suggest we check out as a cool venue to catch upcoming bands/artists?
Yikes! So many great venues. One that I love and and have scene a great mix of eclectic acts is Proud, Camden. Amazing sound, such a range of acts and free on the weekend.
Do you own a record that you wouldn’t like to admit you have?
No. Or maybe a I do...
What advice would you offer to someone just starting out in the wonderful world of being a singer songwriter? Have you fallen foul of anything that you’d certainly avoid in the future?
Do your homework on venues and promoters. Don't be afraid to ask questions and find out if the gig is right for you. Many promoters will just try and get you on stage so they have someone rather than thinking of your best interests. Then deliver on all your promises with the good venues and promoters.
You did a cracking cover version of Eagle Eye Cherries ‘Save Tonight’ and said that if it reaches 3000 views on YouTube you’d go into a studio to record it, it’s such a beautiful version, why not just go record it anyway?
Fair point. Maybe I will.
Being an unsigned musician how hard is it to get noticed and how has social media aided your music?
it's definitely harder to get noticed. However, I do have total creative freedom which I like. Social media is an amazing tool that we all have now that enables us to share and connect with others all over the world. For free! It's helped immensely. As well as to discover other artists myself.
With social media being as big as it is nowadays, how would you cope without it?
Hard to say as I've never done music without it. I'd still be enjoying doing what I'm doing and that's the main goal for me.
You like loads of bands/acts, listed below are a small section of your favourites, please list your favourite track from each band/act;
Hozier - To Be Alone
Bears Den - Agape
Ray Lamontagne - Jolene
Mumford and Sons - I Gave You All
Mason Jennings - Butterfly
Damien Rice - Old Chests
Noah and the Whale - 5 Years Time
Laura Marling - Blackberry Stone
Have you played with a backing band in the past? If not, would you consider it in the future?
Often when I do a release show, I will get some other artists in to play with me to make it extra special. Apart from that I love the freedom of creating all the parts for the song myself. It really gets me to push myself and what I'm capable of.
Any festival plans for 2015 yet?
I've booked in a few but most festivals are just getting going on bookings or haven't closed applications yet.
Our glasses were dry, I ordered another couple from the fair maiden of the bar and whilst waiting for her to stop gassing to an elderly type who had clearly been there since opening time, I posed a few quickfire style questions to Richard....
Coffee or Tea?
Coke or Pepsi?
Drum machine or the real deal?
Mac or PC?
ABBA or The Spice Girls?
Breaking Bad or The Walking Dead?
Moshpit or Head Bang?
Fry up or Sunday roast?
Beard or no beard?
Lemmy (Motorhead) or Ozzy (Black Sabbath)?
CD or Vinyl?
Car or Motorbike?
Acoustic or electric?
Tattoos or Piercings?
Robert de Niro or Al Pacino?
Robert de Niro
God or Google?
We'd like to thank Richard for sparing his time to sit down with me and run through the questions, we wish him every success in the future and look forward to catching him live at a London event in the near future. Wait, where do you think you're going? Why not spend a few moments checking out Richards various social media sites, they're all listed below, all you have to do is click on the links and you'll be there, simple!
Interview by Steve Muscutt