Chatterbox: Sam Frankl

Hey, tell us a bit about yourself.

I split my time between a studio that I built in Battersea and live rehearsal. Having said that, I read slightly more than I rehearse. I should probably redress that balance but I’ve always come at music from a literary perspective. I don’t think lyrics can be incidental; I try to never sing anything I wouldn’t want quoted back at me. That’s an uphill battle I suppose, there can’t be many old songwriters left unmortified by their younger selves. 

Where did the new single come from?

Gold Rush came from an unusual writing process. I programmed a sort of faux boss nova beat, then cut up some sampled saxophone lines and set a loop. I landed on the verse melody and ad-libbed lyrics for hours until something stuck, it happened to be the line: ‘There’s a grain of sand in Lambeth, it’s in the rubble that they’re sifting through. They struck gold in my living room.’ The first part of that line is a William Blake quotation that anyone who spends time in Brixton Market will be familiar with.

In context, that image was about the peace and wholeness Blake found when he moved to Lambeth and made his home there (minutes from where I live). I wanted to write a protest song about the housing crisis. I wanted it to be from the perspective of a young man sitting inside his home while it’s being demolished for redevelopment. But I didn’t want it to be a song about fear and hopelessness so much as a song that was totally reverent to the idea of place and defiant in the face of its destruction.  

Is there more content in the pipeline?

Very much so. There’ll be a video for Gold Rush coming out towards the beginning July. That’s currently in production. There’ll be a vinyl mix, full of inspirations for the project, which I put together as an accompaniment to the release and of course there’ll be more new music very soon. The next single should be out in late September/early October. I’m listening to it while I’m writing this!

What’s on the horizon for you?

At the moment, it’s all hands on deck for the video. Once that’s wrapped it’ll be back to the studio and live rehearsals. I’ll be announcing my next headline show in the next week or so. Plus there’ll be a small trip across the pond at some point during the summer but I can’t say too much about that yet! Really it’s all gearing up for album recording sessions and getting the live show ready for a massive 2018. 

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