We’ve been away for a few weeks and what better way to return than with an interview with fellow Liverpudlian Chris Grant. Chris is signed to Alan McGee’s new label 359. 359; in case you didn’t know (and if you didn’t you must’ve been living under a rock for the last few months) are hosting a new night in Liverpool’s District. District is the former Picket… located in the Baltic Triangle area of Liverpool? Still with us? Good….
We are not here to review or try to convince you how good an artist is, we just want to present you with a few words from them and point you in the direction of their songs, vids, gigs etc. Ultimately, the Liverpool Eye is about spreading the word, because if it catches our Eye we believe its worth a shout…
Chris kindly answered a few questions for us…
TLE: What are you listening to at the moment?
CG: Courtney Kardashian’s voice. It’s not a song, I’ve just got that show on the TV. I find every one of them sisters extremely attractive so it’s just on basically.
TLE: What’s the most Rock and Roll situation you have found yourself in?
CG: I was in bed hungover once. Got woken up by a phone call. Some weird American guy started talking to me about my songs telling me that he had heard about me. I was like…“Fuck off, who are you, how did you get my number, I’m in bed piss off kind of attitude? Not interested “. I Don’t even remember what else he or I said. He said who he was, didn’t know him. Went back asleep. Woke up. Got on with my day…. Anyway Mcgee phones me later that day, “Did Seymour Stein ring you?, he likes your stuff I gave him your number”. Turns out it was quite possibly the biggest name in music. This guy signed Madonna…. Is President of Warners US and runs Sire Records. Probably sold about 200 million albums, good albums too, important albums. Huge, huge figure in this game. That’s when I actually started a revolution from my bed. It can be done. That was Rock N Roll. People chase this guy. He chased me. I knew I was doing something right. He forgave the snotty attitude. He loves my album ‘It’s Not About War’. Now I know who he is. I’m pleased. The brains I had went to my head in the end.
TLE: What’s been your favourite gig of yours so far and why?
CG: I played on a huge stage in Liverpool a couple of years ago to thousands. It was a big festival. The gig was ok. Sound was awful as it always is on big outdoor stages. We played great but that’s not why I care. My Grandad was 80 odd and he made it to watch us before getting ill. He watched me and my brother own it on a massive scale to a lot of people. I know he was proud. There was a huge Liverbird behind us 20 feet tall. He loved seeing us up there. He passed away last year. I love that he seen that. He could never get to club nights at his age and stuff. This worked for him, It was sunny, It was outdoor, It was daytime. He watched us achieve something. I love that gig for that reason. He loved it. It’s that simple. I know he loved it. Words couldn’t describe how proud he was of us both. It’s great to know that now he’s not around. He knew we was on our way. A man can take a lot from knowing that about a man he loved. I would have hated it if he didn’t see us start to make a wave. He did. I’m lucky in that sense.
TLE: How do you describe your sound?
TLE: What do you make of the Liverpool Scene at the moment?
CG: I don’t. I’m a song man not a scene man. Scenes don’t have songs. I’ve ignored scenes since the start. It’s working for me. If you have any sense follow suit. Do your own thing always.
TLE: How has your music evolved since you started playing?
TLE: Who are your influences and what was the last music you bought?
CG: Bob Dylan and Neil Young got every move right so it stops there for me. Last record I bought was by Miguel called Adorn. Not all pop music is shite. This dude sounds like Marvin Gaye and the tune is contemporary cool with the right amount of musicianship. The rest of his album is weak bar one. If he lets me write him a song or sings one of mine he could be better. His voice is great. I respect it. The likes of Olly fucking Murs are put to bed by this guy. Pop music can be great. It’s rare but it could be great. This Adorn tune totally swoops Marvin but why wouldn’t you. He nailed it. Stop trying to be Robbie Williams; Olly Murs!! He doesn’t even know who he is or who he’s being himself so you trying to be him… is just awful. This Miguel gets it, we need to go back to the roots of it. Pop music that is. He is like Prince on stage with a voice like Marvin Gaye. That’s good pop music. He is a pop star. A good one…
TLE: What are your rehearsals generally like?
CG: A laugh.
TLE: What’s the ultimate direction for your good self?
TLE: How do you write your songs?
TLE: What do you think the music reflects about you or is it pure escapism?
CG: Reflects my being totally and let’s other escape. The way it should be.
TLE: What’s the hardest aspect of being a solo artist?
CG: There is nothing hard about it. At all.
TLE: What’s the one rule that must remain unbroken?
CG: Never fake it.
TLE: How did Alan Mcgee come to hear about you?
CG: I sent him a message in 2006 on MySpace saying “Sign us now while you have got the chance”. Exactly that. Nothing more nothing less. Now I get it that every idiot in a band will now do this but I must add. He only got back because I was fucking good. So you now have to be at least as good as me to get heard. Just like I had to be at least as good as Noel to get heard and obviously I’m much better than him…and much better now. So good luck with that. I mean it too. I really do. Oh and you have to be a handsome bastard. Forget that bit. The libertines got a pass on that one.
Chris and his fellow 359 label mates play @ District tonight…if you’re lucky you may still get a ticket…
Check out Chris’s links below to delve a little deeper…
Debut single ‘It’s You’ download link