With the busy schedules that musicians we thought we would find a way of reaching out to them, that was a little less pressured. Something that allowed them to answer some questions, at their leisure, instead of being put on the spot on a phone call or in person. As a result we decided to start a series where we send artists small lists of questions and have them answer as they have time.
First on the docket, is Benjamin Francis Leftwich, who will be playing The Media Club, tonight – more info here. We sent him some questions, and here are his responses.
What do you find to be the toughest part of being on the road? I really love being on the road, it’s the only place I feel really at home…. I guess if I had to pick one of the hard things about touring it would be that you’re always away from a lot of the people you love and it’s sometimes hard to maintain relationships with people…. I don’t mean specifically romantic…. Just in general it can be hard to stay in touch… and not many people tour so sometimes people can’t understand why you’re not in touch as much….
But it’s the deal that you make with yourself as a musician you know…. You’re always going to be away or sneaking out in the dead of night to catch a flight… You owe it to your music to make certain sacrifices I guess….
Your music comes across as extremely personal, do you ever find it difficult to find that honesty in yourself? Not really no… I think I owe it to the songs to always be as honest and truthful as possible…. I care about my songs more than most things and I know that they truly come alive when they’re allowed full access to my mind…. It’s kind of a no brainer though I think….
I heard a rumour that you created the cover art for Last Smoke Before the Snowstorm, is this true? Or is it just one of those silly unsubstantiated claims?Haha… I’m not much of a painter/drawer so no I didn’t design it myself… but I did talk at length and in detail with the artist who created it about what I thought about all the songs and all the messages and themes in the album…. I really wanted the cover art to contain lots of little snapshots from throughout the album… and I think it looks amazing!
You were forced to postpone your previous date in Vancouver, BC, are you able to clarify on what caused this? My dad diagnosed with cancer so I wanted to be at home with him for a while…. Even though it was shit circumstances, it was the first time in a few years I’d been able to spend some time at home and spend time with people I hadn’t seen for a while….
Something a lot of our users ask about when talking about artists on tour, is their diets. What is your favourite food while on the road? Haha…. Because touring is so hectic most of the time it’s really easy to eat a lot of shit just because it’s convenient…. But on long tours this can really ware you down…. I’ve learnt from past mistakes…… I’m looking after myself a bit better now… as I’m writing this I’m sat in an airport somewhere in America called “Charlotte” and I’ve just eaten a banana and drank a V8 vegetable juice drink!
So there you have, a quick Q&A from a musician on the move. Stay tuned for more from this Questions on the Road series.