Simon Fagan

4 Aug

I love touring, especially abroad, so the more that comes my way, bring it on is what I say.”

Growing up listening to timeless artists such as Miles Davis, Van Morrison, and Tom Waits, Ireland born, Simon Fagan always had music in his background. With his most recent album ‘Outside Looking In’ gaining exposure, his career is off to a wonderful start. I recently interviewed Simon and learned more about the talent abroad.

Q. You’re acoustic/rock approach is reminiscent of early Ryan Adams. Any influences growing up that influenced the formation of your eventual sound?

A. It’s funny you mentioned Ryan Adams I was only listening to ‘Heartbreaker’ earlier today while pottering around would you believe. Yea, I think the eventual sound of ‘Outside Looking In’ was helped by listening to a lot of artist and bands like, Credence, Tom Waits, Adams, Ray La Montagne, and Van Morrission to name but a few. Some of the arrangements rely heavily on harmonies and I suppose you could put that down to my youth, where I spent time singing in choirs.

Q. Having grown up in Ireland, have you had a chance to play for international audiences at all? And if not, do you have a desire to do so?

A. I’ve toured in the States, Canada, UK, Egypt, and all over Ireland many, many times. I love touring, especially abroad, so the more that comes my way, bring it on is what I say. I’ll probably regret saying that someday!

Q. You feature a free download of your EP “Live at Cameron House” on your website. What was the thinking behind allowing a free download?

A. It was a live recording from a performance in Toronto. A really cool lil’ venue called ‘The Cameron House’, if you’re up there check it out, especially on a Monday night, It was a great vibe so we decided to throw it up as a free EP. People seem to really like it, and the fact that its free, gives people the chance to see if they think you’re worth spending their hard earned cash further on down the track!

Q. You recently won “Best Performance” at this year’s International Songwriting Competition. Has this brought about a boost in support and exposure?

A. It was great to get recognized for my work, and from such an established and reputable body was all the sweeter. Its certainly opened avenues for me that would have remained under lock and key if it weren’t for the ISC.

Q. Would you describe the experience at the International Songwriting Competition? What was involved in the process? How was the voting done?

A. Well, if im totally honest, my manager entered my song. I then found out it was down to the last 15 songs out of a total of 15,000 entries. Another few months later, I was informed that it won, which was a big shock. It was judged by a panel of judges made up of industry executives and more importantly established artists such as, Jeff Beck, Damon Alburn, Tom Waits, Robbie Williams and many more.

Q. What sort of Irish roots helped form the musical career you have now?

A. I come from a large family and we all play or have played something along the way. My dad sang and my mum, well she also tries to sing (sorry mum). I think I was always going this path from a very young age. I had an urge to write and perform from the age of about 5 years old. God if I only knew then what I know now!

Q. If you could give one piece of schmaltzy advice to a struggling artist, what would it be?

A. Go get a real job! If that fails, be true to yourself in everything you do.

Q. At what age did you start honing in on a career in music?

A. For me it was quite late, I was about 22 when I finished college and got out to the real world and learning the craft of song writing in a serious and full time capacity.

Q. If you could play a song with one artist (or band) alive today, who would it be and why?

A. Hmmmm they have to be alive, right? ‘The Long and Winding Road’, with Paul McCartney. You gotta fix that up now, ye hear!

Q. If you were stranded on an island for the rest of your life and could only bring one of your songs to listen to, which one would it be and why?

A. ‘Time To Go’, its nearly 10min long.

Here is the title track off of his most recent album. Enjoy.

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