Interview With Adam Barnes

Adam Barnes is an Oxford born songwriter and performer. The 20-year-old singer took his first steps into the lonely world of singer-song writing in 2010, with support slots for both William Fitzsimmons and Slow Club, along with the experience from years of previous musical projects.  Adam spent a summer recording a debut E.P entitled ‘Blisters’. The 8 track E.P was released and sold UK based, selling up to a thousand copies within the year.

His appearance at this years Redfest Music Festival 2012 was one of the many highlights of the glorious weekend.

We spoke to Adam about his REDFEST performance and his other projects:

RAWAdam, how was this year’s Redfest for you?

AB:  The festival was really good fun, we only got to hang around on the Friday ( when our set was finished.)  But we got to see some really cool acts and it seems like a great atmosphere. The set was great as well, (other than a large amount of drum and bass music that came seeping into our tent), and there were plenty of people … and new fans … singing the words… which is always a great thing to have.

RAW:   Are you looking forward to your Autumn Tour and working with Richard Walters?

AB:  I’m massively excited. Richard was a huge influence on me becoming a solo artist and songwriter when I was younger, so to be able to have the chance to tour with him and sing on his songs is unreal. I found out about his music many years ago when he was signed to Oxford label Big Scary Monsters and have been a fan ever since. Our first date of the tour is going to be our first ever show together so its a momentous occasion for me.

I actually think our styles are quite well suited, as I have grown older I’ve quietened down and fixated more on folk storytelling and more personal affairs…  and I think we’ll bounce off each other really well.

The big highlight of the tour for me will be my hometown date in Oxford. It’s’ somehow managed to be set on my 21st birthday and will be a big hurrah for the last 6 years of musical lifestyle that I’ve gone through. I’m so excited for the next 6!

RAWTell us about opening for Deaf Havana – What is your relationship like with the band?

AB:  This was the first time I’ve ever met the guys, I’ve seen them support Young Guns before, while I’ve been working at one of the venues …  but it was great to meet them and they were extremely nice throughout the evening. It’s always nice to know you’re on the minds of the bigger touring artists (like themselves.)

It’s amazing having the opportunity to open for them and its shopped us to a big audience which is really amazing … and the response has been great. I feared my music was a little too acoustic to go down well,  but with the move to the softer side with Deaf Havana,  we suited the night really well.  I couldn’t be happier with how it all went.

We haven’t worked together before, but I would certainly love to play with the guys again.

RAW:  How is your new  live EP ‘From Washington to York’  going?

AB: I believe its going really well, it charted when we released it on iTunes and that’s the first time it’s happened for me. It was fun to make actually – the 2 shows they are from were a couple of the funniest solo shows I have done recently.  A great house concert in York who put on regular stuff with amazing artists and a performance at a theatre in Washington – they are polar opposites on the venue scale but they transition so well into each other on record.  Both gigs were with Chris Ayer  who is another big influence of mine – It is his  beautiful harmonies that are on a couple of the tracks on the record!

RAWYou are famed for your excellent covers. How do you choose which songs you cover? What characteristics do you think, make a good cover song?

AB:   I mainly choose to do covers of songs that I enjoy, and I want to share with the world. I don’t do it based on chart success or whether it will get me hits. I think that is what makes a good cover song – along with the ability to make it your own. Sometimes I do it better than others, I really did enjoy doing Drops Of Jupiter – Train.

Personally I hope that it’s not something I’ll become famed for, but it is something that I do on occasion. But I hope people are pulled in by my own songs and live performances over my videos.

Adam Barnes was talking to © Neil_Mach August 2012



Oct 04    St. Albans Church   Oxford

Oct 06    York House Concerts   York

Oct 07    The Castle Hotel    Manchester

Oct 16    The Vortex Jazz Club  London

Nov 04   Leaf    Liverpool

Nov 14   Chapel Arts Centre    Bath

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