I’m glad you’re still with me. The last episode was a blinder, and despite having a two week break it still seems people are digging the podcast. Thank you for sticking around.
We’re back to normal this week and it's episode 30. Bloody hell.
On this episode I speak to Billy Liar who is among some of the most talented singer songwriters in Scotland right now. I’d never met the guy before, but it was great to hang out and shoot the shit with him. He’s a very lovely, intelligent and thoughtful guy. I'm a big fan of punk infused folk, or folk infused punk, or whatever you want to call it. So having a Scottish take on it certainly warms my cold little heart.
This interview takes place in a pub in Glasgow’s city centre, meaning that the whole chat is sort of enveloped in the sort of low mummer of hundreds of voices speaking at once. I like the ambience it gives. We had a couple of pints and decided to talk about music and creativity. I found it fascinating. I hope you do too.
Always wanting to play music and writing songs before even realising he could play songs
Forming his first band and playing shows in school, community centres and church halls
Seeing The Offspring for the first time
The dangers of comparing your life to someone else as everyone grows old and grows away from music
AFI and Caffeine and how that opened up punk for both of us
Caffeine’s DIY CD and Billy’s first experience of a DIY band
Why he went solo
Approaching every recording differently, and not trying to write into a genre
How it’s taken a while to get to the point where other people are asking him to do things
Waits, Cash, Springsteen and musical storytellers being an influence
The influence of authors on his songwriting process
First songs being influenced by conversations on MSN Messenger
Finding a balance between songwriting and storytelling in music
Creativity as catharsis – the need to get certain feelings out
“I don’t believe in a soul really, but it do believe it’s possible to write based on the influences in your life if you manage to get onto that perfect wavelength where the thing comes through you.”
Writing more stuff based on characters
His new split with Paper Rifles and the reason that came about
During my Christmas break I toyed with the idea of doing this podcast in seasons, ending season one with episode 30 and then picking it up again later in 2016. I’ve decided against that – for now – but I’d love to know your thoughts on this. Would seasons be better? It does take off the pressure of having to churn out content week after week… Featured Music Intro: Voodoo Puppets – Electric Chair Blues (used under CC licence, you can check it out here).
Billy Liar - All I've Got Billy Liar - Words Billy Liar - Change
I make no claim to the copyright of any of the music in this episode. Links All of Billy's music is available on bandcamp and is, I believe, worth every penny.