Viewing: Interviews - View all posts
By: Christopher Hislop
Posted April 12, 2018
New Interview with Bobby Long. Click on the photo below to take you to the story.
April 10, 2018
The show at the Fallout Shelter in Norwood, MA has been POSTPONED due to a family emergency with the shows producer. The show is planned to be rescheduled for a later date. Please keep watching for more information. We apologize for any inconveinence.
The Gravel Project - Extended Play Sessions
The Fallout Shelter
April 14 7:00pm
The Fallout Shelter - 61 Endicott Street, Norwood, MA, United States
The event is scheduled to be live streamed on The Fallout Shelter Facebook page.
Bobby Long is a folk troubadour. "His lyrics are dark, mesmerizing, candid portraits of the human condition more in the vein of Tom Waits than say Dylan or Springsteen but he belongs in the same conversation as that lofty trio." Take a listen to his "Dead and Gone" video from his 2015 Fallout Shelter show and you'll see what a truly moving, engaging singer/songwriter he is and why we are so excited to have him return.
Doors open at 6, music starts promptly at 7 and goes for about 1 ½ hours. Followed by a 30-45 minute always fascinating interview. Over by 9:30. Ticket includes a light buffet and a cool souvenir poster. There is a cash wine & beer bar for your drinking pleasure.
By Darren Paltrowitz
Posted October 23, 2017
Initially famous for having a song featured in the blockbuster movie Twilight while still attending college, Bobby Long recorded his first album — 2009’s Dirty Pond Songs — in his London bedroom. That self-released, full-length debut album charted high on iTunes and led to a record deal with ATO Records. Long spent the next few years touring the world, playing top festivals, and even making it onto The Tonight Show. The British singer/songwriter opted to move to the United States during this period.
After touring behind a second full-length for ATO, 2013’s Wishbone, Long went the independent route and began working with PledgeMusic in 2014. The following year brought the release of Long’s fan-funded Ode to Thinking, as released by the Nashville label Compass Records. Long has since conducted another PledgeMusic campaign for his forthcoming album, also to be distributed via Compass. Two new songs, “Serpentine” and “Nautical,” were performed and premiered online via Paste performance sessions. Also of note for Long is that he recently put out his second book of poetry, Losing My Misery, and there is a possibility of a third one being put together.
I had the pleasure of conducting Q&A with Mr. Long for the Inquisitr, in the process getting some insight of what is ahead for him. For more on Bobby Long, point your web browser towards www.bobbylong.info.
Beyond your music, you have released a pair of poetry books. Do you view yourself as a musician that also does poetry? A musician and a poet? Just an artist?
Bobby Long: I guess I would call myself firstly a musician. I’m just trying to explore and be as creative as possible. I would never call myself a poet. I don’t think there is a humanly way of doing so without sounding a bit pretentious.
Did you start off as a lyricist? Or were you always both a musician and a lyricist?
Bobby Long: I guess lyrics come slightly before. Once I started playing an instrument, they became tandem. I enjoy writing both, one as much as the other.
When you’re writing words, how do you know whether something is poetry versus something meant for a song?
Bobby Long: Because I sit down with one in mind. Occasionally, you are left in a state of confusion as to which your writing will end up as, but you just lend it to whatever you are working on.
If I recall correctly, you were one of the first artists to really benefit from using MySpace. Aside from using it to promote your music, were you a big social media user back then?
Bobby Long: No, not at all. Even now I have to remind myself to use it. MySpace actually was pretty cool when it first came out. You could really explore and follow and interact with people. Now it all seems pretty corporate, especially Facebook. You have to pay to fully promote and reach all of your followers, which really sucks. Feels like you are being held over a hot fire as there is no other way to promote.
Read full interview here...
By Monica Collier
Posted April 27, 2017
New York-based British singer/songwriter and poet Bobby Long is a wordsmith. His second collection of poetry, “Losing My Mysery,” published in January, and he’s currently touring to support his latest album, “Ode to Thinking”
Long, known for being a versatile talent and engaging folk performer, will be at 116 E. Mobile on Friday night. Tickets are $10, $8 for students, and are available at 116mobile.com or available the night of the show unless it sells out. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. with the show beginning at 8 p.m.
Long recently took time to answer a few questions by phone.
TimesDaily: Have you been writing poetry since you were 11 years old?
Long: Yes. It was nothing too serious, but as a kid, I was really into this one writer and poet. He’s actually a comedic writer. He used to write these funny little kid’s poems. His name is Spike Milligan. I can’t remember any of them off the top of my head, but they’re all funny. I had that poetry book as a kid so I liked writing those. I was always kind of interested in that, I guess — quietly.
TimesDaily: Did writing come naturally for you even as a young boy?
Long: I wouldn’t say naturally. I just liked the way words look on a page. I like rhyming and everything else.
TmesDaily: Did you also discover music as a young boy?
Long: Yeah, I did. I come from a musical family. My mom forced me to play cello as a kid. I really didn’t want to play it, but she said that it would be a good idea. She would drag me along to her singings — when she did little concerts and stuff like that — I would play guitar.
TimesDaily: What was it that shifted you from writing poetry into writing lyrics and putting them to music?
Long: I love guitar. I just really wanted to play guitar. I'm not much of a sharer, so when I started playing with loads of other people at my school who were also playing guitar and we started making bands — I played in a band for a while — I just couldn’t do it. It was so difficult to get five people in a room and agree on a lyric line or even what kind of music we were going to play. I just had to start writing my own songs. I was about 16 or 17 at the time. I really love writing songs. It’s my favorite thing.
TimesDaily: In addition to being a singer/songwriter, you are a published poet. Do you go into writing lyrics differently from writing a poem?
Long: I’ll either be writing one or the other. I don’t necessarily write a lot of poetry when I’m not writing toward a book. Having the target of a book helps with the discipline of it. When I’m writing an album, that’s when I’m focusing on writing songs.
TimesDaily: As you’ve chosen both being a singer/songwriter and a poet as career paths, has the writing become two different animals?
Long: It’s all about discipline really. I want to get to the fruit, the core, to the goodness, as quickly as possible. If I just constantly splurt, like oh OK, I’m just going to fill up a notebook then decide what goes where — I’m going write a lot of rubbish. If I’m like, OK, I’m writing toward a book now, I’m more concise and I focus on poetry for a month. Or, if I’m going to write an album, I focus on that. I feel like I write better that way. I treat it more like a job, I guess.
By Kymber Hill
Posted April 25, 2017
On an April night in 2011, people gathered at a music venue in Birmingham, Alabama to hear the music of a British singer-songwriter. Some people were there for the first time; others were seasoned fans. A then 25-year-old Bobby Long took the stage with only an acoustic guitar and a bunch of compelling original songs and captivated the crowd with both his music and his charm.
That was the first time I had the pleasure of seeing Bobby Long in concert. At the time, a song he had co-written was included in the soundtrack of the blockbuster film Twilight, and he had just released his debut album, A Winter Tale. He would continue to make a name for himself as a songwriter to be reckoned with on the release of Wishbone, his second album, in 2013.
Long started to build an audience for his music when he was playing pubs in London while attending University. With his move to the U.S., his fan base has grown steadily as the result of constant touring both in the U.S. and internationally. In 2014, Long took a leap of faith in those fans and turned to PledgeMusic, a crowdfunding site that helps artists raise money for albums, touring and other needs. His third album, Ode to Thinking, was successfully funded by the campaign and was released by Compass Records in 2015. Last year, Long once again turned to his dedicated fans for support for his fourth album, and thanks to them, he is currently recording his new album.
Not only has he found success in his music career, but he has also published two volumes of poetry: Losing My Brotherhood, released in 2012 and his latest book, Losing My Misery, which arrived in December.
Bobby Long will be performing at Eddie’s Attic on Sunday, April 30, 2017. Tickets are $15 and available now at eddiesattic.com.
I was able to ask Long some questions about his poetry, music and his upcoming album:
Check out Kymber Hill’s interview with Bobby Long below:
KH: You have successfully funded the recording of your next album thanks to a PledgeMusic campaign, which you were also able to do for your most recent album, Ode to Thinking. How does it feel to know that your fans are behind you and this platform to ensure new music is released?
BL: It’s pretty humbling, and it’s so important for my career that I am able to do it. It allows me the luxury of time and to be able to pay people for working on the record with me, which is essential. I have great people working with me on the recording.
KH: It must have taken a huge leap of faith in your fans to get you to try using PledgeMusic the first time around. Were you ever worried that you wouldn’t meet your goal?
BL: Yes, of course. I was really nervous because although I think it’s a great platform and the way of the future, you can never be sure if people will latch on. I think what’s really important is that people who pledged for my album are now looking at other artists in similar situations. People get it and understand what PledgeMusic can do. It’s not a path of desperation or greed; it’s a way to keep music with the people like you and me and away from the money and guys in white sneakers who control the money.
KH: In past interviews, you have mentioned that you were in a rock band when you were younger. You also have mentioned that you weren’t really excited about playing acoustic guitar. What made you switch over from the electric guitar to the acoustic guitar? And do you still try to incorporate electric guitar into your songwriting/performances when possible?
BL: I switched to acoustic guitar because it just fit more with the songs I was writing at the time. I think I was a bit short-sighted back then, and now I really view them as equal options that offer different ways for me to play. On my new record, I’m playing mostly clean electric so it really just varies on the song.
Read entire interview here...
Posted October 17, 2016
It starts with just showing up. Whether he’s penning a poem or writing a new song, the work for Bobby Long begins with the disciplined decision to show up every day. It’s how he’s written a book of poetry and several albums over the last decade. We recently asked him about his latest album, now available for pre-order, and why even he thinks poetry is self-indulgent.
How do you start the process Do you allow it to flow and then you place it later?
I just allow it to flow, to be honest. Obviously you’re influenced by what you’re surrounded by and what you listen to and what you’ve read — whether you like that or not. So in terms of poetry, if I was reading a certain poet’s work or had watched a certain film, it might pop up in the next poem I write, even if it’s something tiny, just like the general pace or mood of it.
For me, it’s all about showing up. Writing is all about showing up. Every time you write, you’re not always going to have something worthy to be published or on an album, but it’s about showing up every day and letting yourself be able to write. Sometimes you don’t even write anything; you just sit there and sit there and sit there. [Laughs]
That’s part of the thing really, the romance of writing. It’s not about feeling waves of inspiration. It’s not about that. It’s just like any job. It’s just showing up and working hard at it and putting the time in. You might throw away what you’ve worked on at the end of the day because it’s nonsense. You might even know it’s nonsense as you’re writing it, but you have to show up. You have to be in the midst of it to get something.
You just mentioned the romance of writing but then gave a very unromantic answer — just do the work. Did you have a more romanticized view when you started 7 or 8 years ago or were you aware of the need for such discipline early on?
Reading quotes from Leonard Cohen and people I loved, they really viewed it as something with a work ethic and structure. My main two things, besides a love for music, were that I didn’t want to wake up early and I didn’t want to wear a uniform. On the writing side, I knew that it wasn’t sitting in a coffee shop and writing, just endless writing and feeling great and constantly impressed with the world. If it was just this inspirational thing, then I knew I wouldn’t be doing it properly. I’d be doing it occasionally.
It’s just like any job, I guess. You have hours to go in, like to a flower store or something. If I just went in once a week, I’d only see the creative parts and it’d feel amazing. But when you go in every day, you see the hard work and you cut your fingers off and the thorns and the customers and the smells that get irritating. That’s life, isnt’ it? [Laughs]
When you put out poetry versus lyrics with music, does one feel more vulnerable than the other?
I don’t know if it’s vulnerable, but I have less of a problem listening to my music with other people in the room than somebody reading it in front of me. We just got a first copy made and I left it on the table in the living room. My friend was reading it and his reaction was great. He picked up a funny poem to read and he was laughing. I was like, “Oh, please don’t do that.” It’s all the same really, but I guess when I’m in the room, poetry feels a bit heavier.
Poetry has a derogatory feel where it can seem pretentious. Wait, it is I guess. [Laughs] You’re writing your feelings down in a book and you’re expecting people to somehow want to read it. That’s a little bit pretentious. It goes along with being a supposed poet. I hate people ever calling me one, really. I don’t want to use the word wanky, but it is a bit frivolous--Read the full interview here...
By Hobart Rowland
Posted June 25, 2016
Blues/folk misfit Bobby Long learns the art of compromise
“I love that record … I’m really proud of it.”
The album to which Bobby Long is referring isn’t the new Ode To Thinking, but 2013’s Wishbone, his second and final release for ATO. And the reason he’s talking about it, quite frankly, is because the guy interviewing him won’t shut up about it. “This is one of the most in-depth Wishbone interviews I’ve ever had—I was hoping for this kind of interview when it came out,” says Long with a chuckle. “It just shows you that, sometimes, things don’t stick.”
Wishbone’s swept-under-the-rug status was all the more perplexing given the strength of its songs—nearly every one an engaging marriage of the Englander’s competing passions for folk, blues and Britpop. If any album that year was equipped to bridge the divide between “September Gurls” and “The Thrill Is Gone,” Wishbone was it. So, is it any wonder that ATO didn’t quite know what to do with the thing?
“I don’t want to be one of those people who slags off their old label—there were some really lovely people there,” says Long, who’s now settled in Beacon, N.Y. “I was instantly put in the singer/songwriter bracket, so I was kind of rebelling a bit. I remember playing a song for the people in my camp early on, and one said it reminded him of Coldplay. I was like, ‘Well, isn’t that a good thing? They sell a shit-ton of records.’”
Please read the full article here...
By Rachel Totten
Posted June 15, 2016
The last time The Daily Times interviewed Bobby Long, in 2011, the British singer-songwriter had just released his debut album, “A Winter Tale,” and couldn’t seem to escape the overwhelming cloud of gray that seemed to follow him.
A lot has changed since then, and Long says he can still feel the desolate cold from time to time, especially in the midst of winter, but takes great pride in his capacity to feel.
“I’m pretty proud of that record — well, I’m proud of all of my records — but to be overwhelmed is an incredible feeling,” he said.
Still, Long seeks to grow past that first record and the chill of the cold to conquer an array of new sounds and concepts.
“I definitely don’t want to make the same album twice or sing about the same things over and over,” he explained. “Obviously some things will pop up, but I’m starting to work out how to say what I need to say in an easier way.” In the years since “A Winter Tale,” Long has played numerous high-profile festivals, including Bonnaroo, Austin City Limits and Bamboozle, and has released two more albums — “Wishbone” in 2013 and “Ode To Thinking” in 2015 — and most recently, a limited edition vinyl release of “Ode To Thinking,” titled “Ode.”
On “Ode To Thinking,” released last August by Nashville-based Compass Records, Long said he took a very personal approach, voicing his own social commentaries and responding to his surroundings.
“It’s more personal than anything I’ve ever written,” he said. “I’m trying to put myself on paper, if that makes sense.”
Described by Long as “a collection and B sides,” “Ode,” the vinyl, features six tracks from “Ode To Thinking,” as well as three unreleased tracks — “Pretty Little Pennies,” “If You Don’t Want To Be With Me” and “From Me.” These songs, he says, are more upbeat and fun than what he typically writes.
Read the complete article here...