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Q&A | Conor Scott

Conor Scott talks to The Last Mixed Tape about his new single 'Slip'

What’s the last song you listened to?

Ben Howard’s latest release, Far Out. Big, big fan. It’s really great, I love the production and it really gives great wee glimpses of his next record coming out. I’m very excited to hear it.

What artist or album has gotten you through lockdown the most?

Women In Music Part III by Haim. Album of the year for me. I had it constantly on repeat for a good 3-4 months. Every song is great and the production on top just elevates it to a modern classic I think. It’s got that real vintage feel to it with the way the drums were recorded – Danielle Haim is a beast, along with her lyrics and guitar riffs. It ticks all the boxes for me, with rock, pop, indie and even jazz elements throughout. The Steps, Gasoline & I’ve Been Down are personal highlights. They deserve all the Grammy’s this year. 

What’s influencing your music right now?

I guess looking at the new EP, influences were coming from all sorts of places. Each song stemmed from particular trains of thought so I always had a general idea of where I was being influenced from. I’m always listening to new music and recently am looking for any sonic aesthetics that really makes me sit up and listen like Ben Howard, Haim, Bon Iver, Maggie Rogers, Half Moon Run or Phoebe Bridgers. I always have my classics too that I go back to for reference so I can keep in check with my foundations like Thin Lizzy, The Police or Foy Vance. Phil Lynott’s lyrics especially in the early albums I just love, its poetry. I’ve been rereading Phillip Pullman’s His Dark Materials and his new books too, I really love the landscape he paints with his words, I guess I’ve been trying to emulate that too. 

Tell us about your new single, Slip. How was it written and recorded? 

I had just moved home to Belfast from London but was back over for a few writing sessions in early 2020, pre-pandemic. One of those sessions was with my mate Kris Platt (More Than Conquerors & Blue Americans) who had just moved over from Belfast. That’s when we wrote Slip. I guess the song is kind of about making those moves – Myself returning home after nearly 4 years in London and him moving there so there’s a give-and-take narrative. I had a few nerves and anxieties returning home, what did it mean to be leaving the metropolis back to my hometown.. was it the right call? But ultimately it’s about knowing what’s best for you and having the support of another. The chorus line best describes that feeling I think – “And it’s you who knows me better than I know myself.” 

The song was recorded at Oil Tape Studios in Belfast with my producer Daniel Morgan Ball, along with the rest of my upcoming EP, “Life Now”. We were able to record together in the height of lockdown because we were actually both in a social-bubble together which made things very easy and stress free with all the restrictions due to COVID. We tackled the majority of it together before getting a few extra helping hands in. There’s a lot of influences from traditional Irish and folk music with the song. A highlight of the recording for me was getting top bodhran player Dermot Moynagh in to record a beat.  Even the title “Slip” references to a Slip-Jig, a traditional Irish style of tune, to which the song has the same rhythmic timings and form as, so we really built the track around that, even with the melodies on vocals and guitars having a similar style.

What do you hope people take away from listening to the song?  

I only hope that folks really do enjoy the song! It’s got a real drive to it with the rhythms and the melodies really travel so I hope it can put a little pep into someone’s step… and who knows, maybe they can fulfil their life-long ambitions of joining Riverdance… ha! I always hope that people can connect with the lyrics in whatever way they can. That’s what I love about listening to music, taking songs and relating to them in my own way. I hope this tune can do that for others. Also I hope it gives people a clear idea of what to expect from myself in the future, both in further releases and the long awaited return to gigging, touring and playing shows. Myself and the band are ready and fully loaded.

Conor Scott’s EP ‘Life Now’ is out Friday 26th March 2021

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