Introducing: Tom Townsend
Singer-songwriter from Scarborough, doing things his own way…
YOUR NAME: Tom Townsend.
WHAT DO YOU DO/PLAY? I write and produce music, sing, and play guitar, drums and bass.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN PLAYING MUSIC?
I started playing at 10-years-old after regularly watching a fantastic local New Orleans-style band, and learning from my dad who is a great country-blues singer. I’ve been a professional musician for the last 15 years, doing studio sessions, live tours, festivals, theatres, and good old pub gigs.
GIVE US 3 REASONS WHY WE SHOULD TRACK DOWN, LISTEN AND DISCOVER YOUR MUSIC?
1: The music features some of the best players in the country, and me.
2: It’s honest, and doesn’t chase trends.
3: I’ve been told it’s great driving music.
WHERE DO YOU SOUND BEST – FESTIVAL, CLUB, BEDROOM – OR SOMEWHERE ELSE?
Probably clubs and festivals, but I’d like to think I can make it work anywhere. I love playing gigs of any scale, and I feel that a varied musical background has given me the ability to adapt to different venues and crowds. I love working with a band but I’m also happy going solo. If I had to choose, I think most music sounds at its best in a more intimate setting.
WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST…
RECORD? My mum and dad are big music fans so we always had a big collection in the house. I think one of my first vinyl purchases was Joni Mitchell’s Ladies of the Canyon.
CD? Soundgarden, Superunknown in 1994.
DOWNLOAD? Rickie Lee Jones’ first album, it’s in my top three of all time so I got that first!
SO, WHEN IT ALL GOES RIGHT AND YOU’VE GOT A MANSION AND A SUPERMODEL GIRL/BOYFRIEND, WHAT WILL BE YOUR BIGGEST MUSICAL INDULGENCE?
A great big studio with an entire wing dedicated to my ever-increasing collection of drums, cymbals, and guitars.
SO, WHEN IT ALL GOES WRONG, WHAT DO YOU FALL BACK ON?
By that point I hope my kids will have become old enough to bail me out. If not, I love wildlife so probably something in conservation. Birds of prey need someone in their corner in this county…
PLEASE CITE SOME INTER-BAND MUSICAL DIFFERENCES…
I am so picky about what goes into a song or recording that I get in my own way! That’s why I love working with the amazing family of musicians from the album, they give me a different perspective on the tunes, and we’re all good mates which helps a lot.
WHO ARE YORKSHIRE’S FINEST IN CULTURE, SPORT AND MUSIC?
I’m a huge fan of Corinne Bailey-Rae, who has been incredibly successful. Her voice and musicality are really special things. I think Scarborough Athletic have done a wonderful job of rising from the ashes to become a strong team and who are now finally playing in Scarborough again! Culturally speaking, the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough has a great programme. Sheffield is a city I’ve fallen in love with, Leeds College of Music produces an unbelievable amount of incredible players – I could go on forever!!
NAME YOUR SUPERGROUP – WHO’S PLAYING WHAT AND WHO’S ON VOCALS?
Vocals: Rickie Lee Jones.
Guitar: Robben Ford.
Keys: Corey Henry.
Bass: Joe Dart.
Drums: Peter Erskine. That would be a killer line-up.
GO SEE THIS FILM: Fargo.
GO READ THIS BOOK: Revenge of the Lawn by Richard Brautigan.
GREAT LOST BAND/ARTIST: Mose Allison.
WOULDN’T BE CAUGHT DEAD SUPPORTING: Haha. I’m not that fussy. Maybe Cliff Richard.
LONDON, L.A OR LEEDS?: LEEDS for sure!
AND FINALLY… AS YOU LEAVE THE STAGE, WHAT ARE YOUR PARTING WORDS.
Cheers for having me!
For more info visit: facebook.com/tomtownsendmusic
images: Mal Whichelow