Luke Rainsford is a solo artist from Wolverhampton who is currently signed to Scylla Records. Following on from his first album I‘m Nothing Like My Dad Turned Out To Be, his second album I Feel At Home With You is due to be released on February 17th, and I was lucky enough to interview Luke about it.
1) Congratulations on such a great album! What was your inspiration behind it all?
Thank you very much! This time around, I took a lot of inspiration from bands such as Sorority Noise, The Wonder Years, The Front Bottoms and Modern Baseball. These are all artists that have these really honest and open lyrics, not always coated behind really complex metaphors. A lot of it is just really simple and heartbreaking, but when they do work in a metaphor it's really well done and cleverly written. I've done my best to put my own acoustic spin on that, and I'm really proud as to how it's turned out! In terms of personal inspiration, most of the record revolves around my relationships (romantic or otherwise) with different people and how they are affected by my mental health, something which I've tried to be really outspoken about on this record. I feel as though depression/anxiety and most kinds of mental health issues still have this stigma attached to them, and a lot of people feel uncomfortable talking about it. If one person listens to this record and it gives them confidence to be more outspoken about their health, and talk to somebody about it, then I will be a very happy man.
2) I assume you must be very proud of every song, but what is your favourite song on 'I Feel at Home With You', and why?
My favourite song seems to change quite a lot. Right now I think it's "Nightmares", which is a song about my insecurities, and how I think they make me appear to people who care about me. I love how this song worked out in the studio, and I feel as though the build to the final chorus works so well.
3) Where do hope to be in 10 years time?
Honestly, I try not to think too far ahead. I never really had high aspirations with music, it's always just been about writing songs that mean a lot to me and if anybody likes what I'm doing then that's just a bonus. I'm very lucky to have people that come to my shows and listen to my music, and I never take that for granted. I guess if I had to hope for something it's just that I can get to a point where I don't need to work a job, and I can just comfortable live from playing my music. I never like to aim too high, I'm just pushing as hard as I can and seeing where it takes me!
4) If you could collaborate with any artist in the world, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
It would definitely have to be Dan Campbell from The Wonder Years. Precisely, it would be with his side project, Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties. He wrote this side project from the perspective of a character, rather than himself, and I'd find that so interesting to work with. I'd love to see how it would work with me and his character writing a song together, or just recording something together.
5) Is music something that you've always wanted to do?
Since the age of 11, definitely. My first instrument was actualy drums, which I fell in love with the first time I ever tried it. I taught myself over several years, and then I eventually picked up a guitar and taught myself how to play that too, and just sort of worked on my voice accidentally whilst writing stuff. It's only the past 2 years or so I've had the confidence to really push and try to make something out of it, but it's definitely always been a huge part of my life, and has shaped the person I am today. I dread to think what I'd be doing now if I didn't have playing shows or going on tour to look forward to!
6) In the music industry people are always quick to compare artists to each other. I can imagine people would start to compare you to the likes of Ed Sheeran and Jamie Lawson, how would that comparison make you feel?
I don't really get compared to pop artists that much, I guess I have a sound that feels a lot more raw. I get compared to artists like City and Colour, Frank Turner and Aaron West a fair bit! As for how the comparison to Ed Sheeran and Jamie Lawson, that makes me feel fine, they're both super talented and I'm very flattered, even if I don't see the similarities myself. I guess being a primarily acoustic artist means I'll always get compared to big acoustic pop artists, but honestly that's fine by me, if someone has taken time out of their day to listen to my music, I'm so thankful for that. They can compare me to anybody that they like!
7) And finally, what advice would you give to someone reading this who wants a career in music?
Honestly, just do what you feel like you really want to do. Don't just follow what is popular at the time, write songs that feel right for you. Also, make friends with literally everybody. Ego's do nothing for you at all, and falling out with the wrong person or being rude to somebody can spiral out of control. Just be kind, be geniune, love what you do, and most importantly, put a lot of effort into everything you do.
Whilst I don't feel like I could give a lot of valuable advice, as I'm still fairly new to this whole thing, anybody is always free to talk to me on Twitter or my Facebook page with any questions and I'll do my best to share some of my limited knowledge with people.
Check out Luke's brand new songs Ties and Home Safe here: