Willy Mason talks to eGigs

ahead of his Wakefield show last night. on Thursday 19 May 2011

Egigs caught up with Willy Mason for a short chat before his show in the city of Wakefield.

Your current tour takes you to a lot of smaller venues, how did that come about?
I'm mostly doing smaller ones on this trip cos I'm just sort of experimenting with some of the new songs and I'm trying to do it all with no promotion or anything like that. I'm just setting it up through friends or friends of friends.

How did you come to do this Wakefield show?
I was contacted by the promoter Chris, he got in touch once he heard that I was going to be over here.

It's a long tour, (there are many UK gig dates and festivals up until September 2011) are you travelling home in between?
Yeah I'm gonna be in the States for a couple of months, I'm trying to line up shows there too.

Any shows you are looking particularly forward to?
Tonight's should be pretty good!

I hear you have moved from Martha's Vineyard to New York, any reason?
It's nice to be able to just focus on the music for a little while. Cos back home there is a lot of day to day stuff, so it's sort of like a break. I know I'll probably go back there, but it's easier to focus on being creative in the city.

You're working on a new album...

Have you just started it?
It's almost done I would say, it's just about finished.

Will there be some songs in this tour.
Yeah I'll be playing some of them, sort of like a stripped down version.

Any house concerts on this tour?
Not really on this one. I did one record store gig but I’m trying to find a time to do another house concert tour but I’m not sure when the best time is to do it yet.

You're playing in the Band Room in the North York Moors, and it's sold out, what is it about that venue do you think that people like?
For one thing it's easy for it to sell out cos it only holds about 50 people I think! I love that kind of a venue; I think it's the center of the town, and the town you can sort of see from one end to the other while you're at the venue.

Is it in a town?
I think you'd call it more of a village, it's basically a valley with houses and farms, and then all the way at the bottom of the valley is the band room.

How did your Isobel Campbell / Radiohead / Chemical Brothers connections come about?
I met Isobel though my neighbour who was engineering her record, Matthew Cullen (Chorus Of Arrows), he introduced us. We met first over the internet, like I just sang over some tracks and sent them to her and she liked them so I ended up doing the tour. Chemical Brothers was through a mutual friend of ours who was in the business and he was working with me at the time. He was working with both of us so he kinda had the idea to put us both in touch. It was the same thing; we started working together over the internet. They sent me some tracks, then I sent them some tracks, finally a sent them an accapella of a song, just vocals, and they put a track behind it...

So you never got to meet them then?
Finally at the end yeah we did! We wrote probably three quarters of the song and then we got together in the studio and finished it off. It's kinda cool collaborating with people that you don't even know. Keeps you focused... From what I hear one of the Radiohead guys heard me play in London and based on that they asked me to come on tour, which was pretty exciting for me.

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article by: Danielle Millea

published: 19/05/2011 17:43

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