A Passion For Sound With Dan Comerford – Episode 5

Dan Comerford is a Vocalist, Guitarist, Sound Engineer, Instrument Maker. In this episode we chatted about his childhood passion for music and the challenges of creating a career in the music industry.

Dan is guitarist and vocalist with dream pop band Frankenstein Bolts and spoken-word punk ensemble Cursed Murphy Versus The Resistance.

Frankenstein Bolts have played at some of the country’s best festivals including Electric Picnic, Other Voices and many more. Their albums have been critically acclaimed in Irish and international music press. Material for a third album is currently being written.

He is also in Cursed Murphy Versus The Resistance who released their critically acclaimed debut album in May 2020.

Outside of life as a performer, Dan works as a live sound engineer and is currently creating his own guitar building business, Comerford Handcrafted Guitars.

Welcome, everyone to the podcast today. I’m Aideen from confidence in singing. And this is Dan Comerford. He is a guitarist and vocalist, and also an instrument maker and documentary filmmaker as well, right Dan?

almost all of those things yes

Almost. Yeah, sometimes we have to get going into the things we like before we can kind of own that as an identity. You know, when you say I’m a dot, dot, dot? Yeah, you do you feel like you need to earn it. And it’s something that I would definitely want to talk about today. Because this idea of I’m a singer, or I’m not a singer is something that even I struggled with. And I had been singing from the time I was a small child, and I’d taken singing lessons. And at the age of 28, someone asked me, What did I want to do? And I said, I want to be a singer. But I can’t do that. Do you know, like, the brain! I’d elevated, the singing thing to something that was so unattainable? So, thank you so much for joining me on the podcast today, Dan. And we we let’s just let everyone know how we know each other a little bit. And just to give some context, and so I’m actually in Michigan right now, because this is where I’m living with my husband, Mike. And Dan, you’re based in…

county, Wexford, Ireland.

Okay, there you go. And that’s where we met where I’m from that new rising edge of experts. And Dan, and I met through Jasmin, who was a budding secret singer, and I hope she’s not so much of a secret anymore. And you were her acccompanis for one of my secret singer concerts.

Tell me a little bit about what you observed. Is there anything from what you observed of those classes and kind of that concert that you find interesting from, from your point of view, in the accomplishments and kind of role?

Oh, I thought that that class was really refreshing in that it is confidence in singing and was exactly what it aimed to be and what it was, you know, a lot of a lot of classes like that can get too technical or not technical enough. But you focused on just developing people’s confidence. And I thought that was really kinda, people claim to do it, but you actually did it. So a nice, unique approach.

Yeah, that’s a compliment. Thank you so much. And tell me how you began with your singing like, I know that you studied music eventually. But as a kid, did you consider yourself a singer? Or were you naturally good at singing or…

My first my first introduction to music was just always around my dad who plays guitar. And I was always just surrounded by all kinds of music, a lot of stuff, the Irish stuff that time it was May Black stuff, which I’m not a fan of. But Sharon Shannon, Big Geraniums, like all the kind of broad range of stuff. And I was always just surrounded by that. So music was always there first of all, you know.

At the age of seven, then I picked up a guitar, and I guess I never really thought of it as singing so much for it was was guitar, guitar, guitar guitar. Until, you know, that’s all I wanted to do until my teens, really, and I kind of kind of found found out at some point in my teens, I suppose. My voice broke or something like that. I didn’t realize I had a voice, you know. So I kind of started singing at that point always accompanying myself with guitar and I haven’t stopped apart from the pandemic. But you know, until then, I haven’t really stopped.

That’s great, because I have so many times given up, you know, music for periods of time and the fact that you have never stopped it, I really admire that.

That said, I have taken, maybe moments where I hate this, I want to stop. You know, I just need a break for a couple of months and that’s okay. Like this. When I was gigging a lot after college and stuff, I kind of got a little bit burnt out. So you know, downtime is okay.

Yeah, definitely, definitely. Tell me about your first instance of kind of singing for other people and, like, was confidence ever an issue for you singing for others?

Yes. My first gig. My first gig when I was actually conscious enough to know that it was a gig.

I had one gig when I was eight years old. And I was such a kid and so full of confidence at that stage that it didn’t even cross my mind that I might be nervous, you know? But uh, yeah, my first real gig was when I was 16. I remember it was in Finnegans pub in Wexford town, which is no longer there. It was an open mic night, and I got up on stage. So just numb with nerves and microphone in front of me, you know, I sang to my hand the whole time holding the guitar, you know. I was, that was I still remember that just as a horrible experience. But then a couple of weeks later, I had my second gig. And that that whole thing was behind me then and that that weight had lifted, and I was actually able to find the mic and sing into it, which was a major step.

So did you did you find it hard to believe in yourself, then? At that point?

I don’t know if it was. Probably, you know, I was kind of dorky, kind of unconfident teenager at that stage. So I didn’t, and I whole music, taking the music thing seriously. And writing my own stuff was kind of unexplored. So

where’s the turning point? Because I know that you you studied music, you actually went to college for music as well. But when was the turning point, when you thought of it as this is, this is me, I have to do this. For me. I like I’m, I am a musician, and I’m gonna need to sing. And here I go. I’m all in.

Well, I think that came before I even thought of my first gig, I had just kind of age 14, probably, you know, when I locked myself in the room with the guitar and just was just always playing, you know, so I’d say around that time, I knew that was going to be some kind of musical musical area for me, you know,

great! And were your family supportive?

And for the most part, yeah, you know, because musical themselves, but as a career path, I don’t know, it’s very hard for anyone to be supportive of someone aiming at music as a career path. You know, it’s great as a, as a pastime is great as a hobby, but it’s very difficult as, as a career. You know, it’s hard for anyone. Go ahead.

Yeah, I mean, that’s the same with my family. You know, I think in Ireland as well, we’re kind of drummed into the idea that you go to university and get a job and people really value security in jobs, more than the creativity or the even the personal development around, you know, working for yourself. Because that’s a in other countries like America, it’s very much valued that you can, yeah, you know, that you go on a journey with a business or something, and it actually teaches you something. So it has value in itself, whereas I think job security is bigger value in Ireland.

Yeah, I think in Ireland at the moment, self employment, as a musician, or as anything else, you know, it’s seems to be quietly discouraged from the top down, you know, there’s, there’s less supports for the self employed here than there shall be, but that’s a whole different conversation for a whole different day.

You know, it’s true, and they would definitely would have a conversation with you about that. And particularly if you’re an artist or a creative person, because a lot of businesses, a lot of the business supports are br for typical businesses. And I’ve kind of tried to do both in that, you know, I’ve gotten a grant from the arts, Kansas, but I’ve also gotten a lot of help from the local enterprise office, which would be more for typical business owners. So I hear you on that one. And we’re coming back I think, to go on

the whole would you ever get a real job? That kind of stuff?

Yeah, are you get the odd email from a family member going? Hey, did you hear about this job? It’s open now. You know, you might want to apply. So yeah, you get that a lot. I know where that you know where you’re coming from. On that does, it does, it does give you a little bit of a it makes you wonder about like, are you doing the right thing and you know, it does it does dent your confidence as well when people don’t believe that things are possible because a lot a lot more is possible than I think the average Irish person person realizes. Definitely, yeah,

throw yourself in.

Yeah, you kind of have to, there is a point. You know, not as a teenager, you know, where it’s just all you want to do, but there’s a point after that when you’re maybe in your 20s And you’ve, you know, it’s it’s beginning to get kind of you either choose this as a career path, or it’s you have to decide whether it’s a hobby or a side project or, or a career path, you know? Yeah. Yeah, that kind of comes a little bit later. Yes. You know, or did for me anyway, I suppose.

Yeah. And I mean, it goes to show from, from what I see of your work that you’ve done other things as well, like, I mean, you actually make instruments now too. Mainly guitars is it?

Yeah, that’s that’s only a recent thing that kind of started during the lockdown late last year, actually, I kind of actually it’s there. And kind of see it. But um, there it does, my first guitar

was on.

But I decided, you know, that I, it was always something I wanted to try. And it was something I’d been doing kind of just dismantling guitars and modifying them and stuff. And I just said, I’ve been getting into bits of wood work otherwise as well. So I decided, you know, how hard could it be? Turns out very, but not so hard that you can’t do it. So, yeah, so I did it. And I was like, you know what this is really, it’s really good for my head. And it’s really enjoyable. So yeah, so now I have a few orders on and have few sales done. And yeah, building a workshop at the back next month. And

yeah, that’s amazing. Really happy to hear you’re doing that.

Cheers. I’m just gonna dive into it and see what happens. Because. Yeah, why not? You know, I want to do this. So.

Yeah, exactly. I’m the same. Like I just like, try to, you know, throw everything at the things that I really want. Until it works. Rather than asking myself, is it working? Is it working? Is it working? I’m like, what else do I need to to throw at this problem? You know, and for me, I think we have something in common there that we both want to work in music, or do something with music, and like I’m teaching now and now you’re making instruments. So it’s like expanding that expectation that I’m a guitarist, and I’m going to be on stage or I’m a singer, and I’m going to be on the stage to having a broader kind of career in music.

Yeah, like there’s, I think, yeah, all my my little things in life have been based around music, like I studied as a sound engineer, as well. And I work as a live sound engineer. So it’s all music based, but I don’t have to depend on being as successful and sustainable performer, I can I have all these little things that kind of tie in and allow me to make a living, you know, and I don’t have to depend on any one of them.

So that’s really good. I

think, I think I couldn’t can’t imagine myself in an office job or anything like that. There’s just or even. Yeah, I can’t imagine if I’m doing the right thing. I think I’m in the right area, I just have to figure out the one that’s the one that’s sustainable.

Yeah, or a combination of a couple that becomes sustainable overall,

with the same engineering thing was, was going to be alastor potentially, the pandemic hit, and I haven’t haven’t done sound at a gig for about a year and a half. So you know, yeah. I do. Yeah. You know, sometimes they don’t, sometimes they don’t. Yeah, I, there’s nothing like with any audience, whether you’re on the stage or if you’re in the same booth. There’s nothing like a live gig. So yeah, I do miss it from all angles. I do.

Yeah. And it’s a I mean, it’s the team kind of thing where you’re, you know, working with somebody and you’re making them sound good. Like when you’re on stage. It’s the same with me my teaching you know, when I get someone sounding good, it’s like this really nice feeling, isn’t it?

There’s just a connection between two people you will have a one to one I have a we’re a bit of electronics in the middle but uh, it’s the same thing you know, you and I just love getting all these musicians in the door and just working with all these different people and it’s, it’s a lot of fun. I really do love it. And it took me a long time after studying it to get to that point where I really did love it you know?

Why Why did it take you so long to find that love Do you think

took me that long to find a steady job and I think that was one of the main things but after college you know I had all this information you know, all this stuff about San engineering and it was all just rattling around in there and one day it just kind of settled and the finally understood it you know, and from that point on, I began to enjoy it a little bit more just you know, that click that you get when you’re when you’re trying to learn something and it just took While when I got there, you know,

yeah, that’s a good point as well about learning because anything that’s got lots of complicated parts takes a while to learn, I always say singing is like juggling, because you have to learn the lyrics. And the melodies. And people who haven’t had a musical background, actually have a lot of work to put in, just in a playful and fun way. But they have a lot of words to put in just to, to learn a melody, where someone like yourself who’s been singing, since you were four or five, will pick up a song a lot faster, you’ll still apply yourself to learning it, but it will be so much faster because of all that background you have with it.

Yeah, yeah, I agree. I definitely agree with that. I remember, when I was when I went to college after and studied music performance. I remembered, the vocal coach, there was very good, but I was going in as a self taught singer, you know, terrible technique, as I found out later on, you know, for going through all these, these classes, learn about tilt and just supporting my voice properly and getting rid of some of my bad habits. And it took took a couple of years of that course to just kind of grind down a few and I really applied myself to tha. I dived headlong into the vocal part of that course. And yeah, I just had to weed out some bad habits. And I just learned, learned the feel of my own voice a lot more than I had before. Even though I’d been gigging and I’ve been singing for years. I just, I just learned so much more about myself as a vocalist in that time. And even though I don’t really rehearse at the moment, again, that’s a bad habit in its own. But I find those those proper techniques that I learned in those classes have really stuck with me, you know? Yeah, I would never regress back into the bad habits, which is brilliant.

That’s really good. Yeah, I think a lot of people who have never taken a singing lesson, they don’t realize how much better a few tips and techniques, like that, generally take time to actually absorb. But when you understand what you’re doing, that’s right and when you understand what you’re doing that isn’t working, it can really change things for you, right?

And if you have someone standing in front of you in a class, and who can tell you exactly at that point, it’s like that, that was right, you did it the right way. Or, you know, he did a way, there’s no real right or wrong way but there’s kind of ways that are, you know, you can easily injure your voice or something like that by just singing the wrong way over years and years and bad habits can lead to injuries down the way. So, you know, for someone to point out those little things like this, some of them can be really technical and a little bit, kind of take a little bit longer to sink in. And others could be just one sentence, like you do this, but you shouldn’t do this. For me, I was very breathy as a lot of hiss and it was a lot of breathiness, which, yeah, when it was pointed out to me. And I was kind of taught how to get rid of that it became very easy just to get rid of that one thing. And overtime, then I was able to kind of what I totally lost from the breathiness I was able to get from other areas of saying, you know,

yeah, I didn’t the way that I talked about it in my classes is about choices. You know, Mike, when we’re doing some of the electronic pop that we do, he likes the breathy sound. So I’m singing with breathy or sound for that than I would in other kinds of types of songs. When you understand how to put it in and how to take it back out again, you really do have choices in how you sound.

Yeah. And then on a technical end of things, like, as a sound engineer, you can you can bring out that in someone’s voice. If those for myself anyway, I still avoided when I’m recording, but I can bring it out in the mixing stage a little bit, you know, I just have its expression and EQ, and you can just put a little bit of air into stuff, you know.

Yeah, yeah, it’s so interesting. So interesting. And I think a lot of people who do record themselves don’t realize how much magic you can actually use in the mixing and, you know, different plugins and, you know, different types of effects. That could

Yeah, it’s so accessible now. You can, if you have a laptop, you can pick up a mic and an interface for maybe 100 quid, I don’t know. And you can get recording yourself on Oh, man. It’s brilliant. You know, from when I started. I got into that about 14 years ago, I think, and the technology was still pretty new. You know, the, still the transition from tape to digital and it was just kind of find out his feet a little bit and now compared to then it’s just you can you basically have a studio in your pocket and your mobile phone you know? Amazing. Absolutely amazing.

It really is. I mean, yeah, sure we all remember the days of like, recording things, like songs onto your tape

cassette recorder

and doing a harmony then by playing the tape into another tape recorder and yeah.

Oh my god is you were mixing before! I didn’t do any kind of fancy stuff now. So there that shows you know, how early you started mixing!

God? Yeah, that was like, Yeah, when I was only a kid like, Yeah, I remember my dad showing me that one. We had a stereo the house stereo and we had a my sister’s ghetto blaster as she called it, you know? Yeah, I was able to record into one and play it back on the other and then sing a harmony into yeah.

you were layering that actually.

Yeah. Yeah.

That’s really fun to remember. And it just goes to show how do you how do you know far back that interest goes with you. Which is lovely that you’ve you know, the mean, like, sometimes when you’re not doing the thing that you love, like, say or sound engineering, you can feel a little bit like, you lose a part of your identity as that like, but if you were doing that, from the time you were a young boy, that’s, that just says, you know that it’s just a part of you, you know, and whether you’re doing a lot in it right now, or whether the pandemic is affecting your ability to work at it or not. It’s still a passion

Oh, totally. Yeah, that’ll always be there. You know? Yeah, I hadn’t actually realized how I thought the tape thing was just a thing I did. But I hadn’t I hadn’t really thought about it. I know, in a sound engineering point of view. So that’s, that’s an interesting angle

when people ask you, how long have you been doing sound engineering? You can say,

six or seven, you know?

Brilliant. It’ll look good on your resume and your bio. “I started mixing when I was seven”

So, do you find that you have difficulties with your confidence in any in other areas now, like, you conquered the confidence part with your own singing, because you just loved it so much that you kept applying yourself. That’s what it sounds like to me. Am I right?

Yeah, I guess yeah. I never I never would have said it like that. But I think you’re probably right. Yeah. I never, I never shied away from just putting myself in, in the performance situation, or any situation where I might have to do something where I’m depended on for doing something. And I never shied away from that. And I would have always learned from that, then I guess, you know?

Yeah, and it’s your passion

those, yeah, yeah. If you’re in those situations, as well, like my, my first gig, sank in my hand, terrified, like, I cannot stress how terrified I really was. But then a couple of weeks later playing another gig. And whatever happened, I must have learned something from the first one and I was less terrified. And, you know, I’d done it once, and that was a huge thing. And I knew you had to do it. More or less, you know, so much better the second time. So it was that quick, you know. Yeah, I think that happens with everything. I remember my first my first gig as a sound engineer as well. Terrified, not to the same degree, of course, because it was darker, and no one was looking at me, but uh, you know, still terrified, and just kind of probably just blagging my way through a little bit, you know, just a bit of a chancer. But yeah and when that worked out, the next gig was actually easier as well. So that seems to be a pattern of how I just dive into things and see how they go.

I definitely like that approach. Yeah.

I’d advise anyone to do it. Like in your singing class. It’s, I think, maybe I’m wrong, but it’s about getting people to, to allow themselves to do that. As much as it is about singing, you know, it’s to people allowing themselves to sing in some ways.

Yeah, it’s like you’re not holding yourself up to some level of perfection or a standard of performance necessarily in your first try. It’s more that if I do it at all, I’ve succeeded.

Yeah, yeah. If you do it once, then, you know, the next time might be you might enjoy it a second time, you know? Yeah. No one ever enjoys the first time

we have so many stages to learning. So I think a lot of people are so afraid to take the first steps that they don’t take any steps and I definitely ask people to, you know, to record themselves even on their phone to try that, you know, as a starting point but you obviously had been doing for a long time. But even doing that much can be terrifying to some people. And it’s all just about… don’t worry about how good is this like, but just the fact that you did it is a really positive thing. And you learn from doing the thing.

I also remember the first time when I was learning about the sound thing, and I picked up some equipment and started recording myself at home. And I remember the first time really listening to you know, mics are so detail. First time listening back to my own voice really listened back to my own voice, you know, it never sounds like you think it sounds it was… yeah, it was kind of horrible. But, you know, you get used to it after a while and you just realize that that’s, that’s how you sound and it’s okay, like, but yeah, it’s definitely off putting the first time you hear yourself recorded back.

100%. I mean, I wanted to sound like Ella Fitzgerald or someone. You know, I studied jazz music. And I think I was singing every song like, you know, at least a third or fourth lower than was natural for my range. And I had to admit, over time that my sweet spot in my voice was a kind of a pure, a slightly sweeter kind of higher than then that voice of the typical jazz singer. And that’s, you know, you have your instrument, that’s what you work with. And you can improve it and you can, you can do a lot with your instrument once you accept that this is how I am today and then work with that, rather than trying to work against it.

Yeah, exactly, like I, in college, I was I was the guy with the low voice, you know, I used to kind of challenge myself to sing lower and lower and lower. And you know, it was it’s kind of like a fun trick almost. And that’s how I think of it now it’s just, it’s just a trick, you know, and it was okay. But I’m less of a bass more of a baritone, I think. Yeah, it was any any recordings that my college mates were doing is like, “Dan, would you put a low vocal on this?” And yeah, I kind of got tired of that after a while and just started singing the way I naturally would, you know?

Yeah, yeah. Not trying to fit yourself into somebody else’s ideas.

Yeah, I have my voice. And that’s, I’ll just, I’ll just sing that way.

Yeah, exactly. And for a lot of people, and some people listening might not know much about music theory or anything like that. And I think that from that perspective of knowing where your sweet spot in your voice is, sometimes the song needs to be changed, like, as in the backing track needs to be higher or lower. And we call that in a different key, you know, and if you’re not musical, or you haven’t got that musical background, the reason you’re not sounding the way you want to sound can be simply because the song isn’t in or at the right level for you, or in the right key for you.

Exactly, yeah. Yeah, that can be. That’s why, like, I always accompanied myself with the guitar. And that’s, that’s where the capo really came into its own, you can just change the pitch of the guitar in a second. You know, what, if someone’s playing to a backing track, it becomes more difficult. I don’t know what way backing tracks are now if you can download them in all sorts of different keys, you probably can. That’s our midi, I suppose so. So it’s probably

there are a few. Yeah, there are a few websites where you can bring him up or down. Only usually about, you know, a tone or two, maybe Yeah, because they do start to distort at certain points. So yeah, but let’s go on.

I don’t know if I had a point there.

You’ve had some brilliant points already. So extra questions. I want to ask you a couple more questions. Well at least you have something to say, Dan, you weren’t sure you’re going to have that much to say!

I do get nervous with the podcast or any kind of video chat. I do get kind of very self conscious with. No, I wasn’t self conscious up until this very moment. Actually.

I shouldn’t have mentioned it. Okay. Well, I do want to ask you, what would you say to someone who’s starting out? Kind of that hasn’t really done any performance and they’re just starting with their singing or they’re performing or even song writers? You know, you know, that can be another big step where you start writing, what would you say to someone who’s just beginning?

I think, you know, start at the start. Don’t, you know, you can only, you can’t start anywhere else. You know, you have to you have to start at… there has to be a first time you try something. So start there. And don’t try and start halfway up the ladder, because it’s just, you’ll, you’ll meet a wall and you won’t, you won’t want to do it anymore. Just start singing in the shower or singing in your room, whatever, you know, you know, if you have a space where you just enjoy sing it to yourself or something like that, just, you know, just sing. And don’t, don’t worry about how anything sounds or who’s, who can hear it or anything, just start there. And then if you enjoy doing it, do it more, if you feel you want the gig sometime, you know, maybe make it an annual plan, you know, at some point that New Year’s resolution sometime this year, I will play my first gig or something like that. And just one step at a time, I think. Because if you’re if you’re skipping two or three steps, yeah, you might be out of your depth at any moment. And that’s no good. It might take the love of it away.

Yeah. And that can happen. Actually, when you study music, I found that in college, you get a bit overwhelmed, because you’re trying to see all these steps ahead of you. But there is a point where you’re at zero, you know, so your first step is knowing you’re at zero. And you’ll get to step number one by being at zero.

Yeah, exactly. Yeah, everyone starts, you know, yeah, at nothing, you know, the first time I picked up a guitar was was the first time I picked up a guitar, you know, and I started at that point, and I worked from there. First time I sang my head off, was, yeah, started there as well. And finally figured out that I could do it, to the point where I wanted to gig it and yeah, baby steps.

Baby steps. I love that. That’s really important. And a lot of adults, when we start something new as an adult, we put ourselves under these terrible pressures.

yeah, definitely. Yeah. You know, you think, Oh, I’m 33. Now I should be, should be a famous singer already. And no, just sing like, that’s all any of us do. We just sing! Yeah.

That’s a really good. Do you think there’s a value to you know, singing beyond just sounding better as a singer?

Yeah, you can look at this from all kinds of angles. Like, if you look at, you know, the cultural merits of singing, you know, in Ireland, especially that it’s, it’s just, it’s such, it’s ingrained in culture, it’s just a way of storytelling, you know. So from that aspect, it has huge merit in singing, a huge value in singing, entertainment value for people and just, you know, which is, again, that’s another step if you’re performing, you know, and it’s just good for your head. You know, if you can concentrate on that. You might stop concentrating on other stuff, if that’s what you need to do. You know,

Like a focus?

Yeah, it might take your focus away from from other stuff, or what would you call it that kind of, I can’t think of the word but you know what I mean?

Yeah, yeah. Is it like it’s like a distraction?

Yeah, yeah.

Yeah, it can start off as that I think we know, we think, for me, I feel that I’m always trying to get people to understand the value of doing singing for themselves. Because a lot of people see only value in being the entertainer, when there’s actually a lot of value to even singing it to yourself in the shower is like you said, it’s good for your head. It could be good for you physically as well.

Yeah, yeah. Well, if you if you’re doing it properly, I suppose Yeah.

But just even breathing. Like when you sing, you actually get more oxygen into your brain. So I would see that as a big positive. Sometimes there’s value that we don’t…

Yeah, yeah. I never thought about that. That’s good. But you kind of have to ask, like, why? Yeah, if someone comes to you and says, I want to, I want to sing, you know, you have to kind of ask that person maybe why, what is it about thing that you want to do? What is it that you like about singing? There’s a value in it right there. The answer to that question is that person’s value in their singing.

I think sometimes it’s hard to articulate why you want to do it. I remember being asked Why do I like singing so much? And I was like, you know, I asked the guy, why do you like soccer so much, you know, like, you know, you don’t think about why you like us, but you just like it Don’t ya?

Passions go kind of deeper than that. It’s kind of kind of goes beyond explaining or beyond being able to put words on, you know?

Yeah, that’s really, I think that’s, there’s something deep in that, like I think you could talk more about that. And you’d find, there’s even from that idea of the culture and our identity as a as a nation or, you know our understanding of ourselves as a person, and who are you? What’s your, what’s the story that you would like to tell? Why do you want to tell that story? Why does that matter to you? And what’s is hitting off from your life that makes it important? And what you know, how can you translate what you feel and that song for someone else, where it becomes a communication and almost a form of, of transmutation or healing of that thing, you know, it becomes a way of handling.

And that could be something that any particular person might want to express to someone else. Or it could be just for themselves, you know, an either or both of them are equally valid ideas for, or reasons for getting into singing. You know,

Dan, tell me about the different projects that you’re involved in right now. And like what your passion, your creativity is being channeled into in the last while.

I play with two bands at the moment, backing vocals and guitars, Frankenstein bolts are one of them. We’re dreampop, indie band, couple of albums out, another album on the way. And I’m with Cursed Murphy versus the Resistance, which is a spoken word punk, something, something, mad bag of bats, it’s brilliant! I do a bit of backing vocals in that as well and guitar. And on the side, I do some video production and I build instruments.

Fantastic. And do you, are you writing any songs yourself at the moment?

At the moment, I’m not, that’s a habit I really got out of and I would like to again, but I’m not putting myself under any pressure to do it, you know, like. My main, my main, one of my main jobs in the bands is that more of a composer than a writer. So for cursive Murphy’s versus resistance, for instance, I would write the majority of the music. And Peter would write all the lyrics. So I’ve kind of kind of shifted my focus from from being a lead singer and lead writer into a collaborator, I guess, which I’m more confortable in.

does that suit you?

It does. Yeah, it really does at the moment. I always enjoyed being a lead singer. But I just, I was always kind of a little bit more reluctant to put myself out there as a face of something, you know, I really enjoy being maybe the second in the band or something like that, where I, where I get to be very creative, but I don’t have that lead singer thing where everyone’s looking at me.

You know, it’s a different kind of pressure as well. And I think you’ve more scope for your creativity, like you said, a little bit in the background. Because you’re not thinking about how it’s going to be perceived necessarily, it’s a little bit more of a, you know, you’ve a little bit more of a wider kind of scope to explore. In that role.

I think I think I work… I think I work better in that regard than I ever did as a lead singer anyway. Yeah, I love, I love singing as well, but backing vocals and guitar and actually writing some pieces and doing arrangements and all it’s, it’s yeah, it’s, it’s strange that I never really thought of any of that when I was growing up. They’ve kind of landed at this point now and I love it so I wouldn’t change it.

There you go. And you know, sometimes we see you know, the lead singer is the number one or most important element of a band, a lot of people will know Bono before they know the names of the rest of the band. But in fact, the actual key people in the band might not be the lead singer, they can be the person on drums, or they can be the producer sometimes as well, yeah, can be a crucial part of the success of any group. So like, even though in modern culture, we have like a first, second, third and first is considered the best and second is considered the next best. It actually isn’t like that we have first, second, third, fourth, fifth and they can all be the best at what they do in slightly different ways.

Of course you’d never, you’d never say that to a lead singer though. No, because I always tell them that they’re the best. Yeah.

Good. Well, I’d like to work with you then I can be the lead singer. If you’re going to work with my ego like that I’ll definitely enjoy it.

Fantastic, right, thank you so much for joining me today for the podcast. It’s been an absolute pleasure. The conversation took nice little turns there that I don’t thinkg either of us knew exactly where it was going to go. But I really enjoyed where it went and I hope listeners will start to understand the idea of, you know, like you said jumping in and trying the thing, starting where you are at right now.

Yeah definitely, just try it, you know.

100%, I love that. So that’s it for today everybody. Thank you all for listening. And I’ll put all of Daniel’s details are going to be accommanying the podcast, of course. So please do look up Frankenstein Bolts and Cursed Murphy verses the Resistance. And Dan has his first every documentary film on YouTube as well

The Hands of Frankie Machine

Fantastic. I’ll put some links in the information with the videos and the podcast as well. So that everyone can find out a little more about what you do. And we’ll hopefully get those projects out there a bit more. Get more eyes on them

Yeah thank you

You’re welcome! It’s been an absolute pleasure to have you.

Much appreciated

I really appreciate you! It’s been fantastic.

I enjoyed that!

It’s been fantastic. I look forward to talking to you again. And I’m watching this space now, Dan, to see what you do next. So that’s it for today. I’ll sign off now. Thank you everyone.

Good. Yeah. Well, I’d like to work with you, then I can be the lead singer. If you’re going to work with my ego like that. I’ll definitely enjoy it. Fantastic. Write a look, thank you so much for joining me today for the podcast. It’s been an absolute pleasure and the conversation talk nice little turns there that I don’t think either of us knew exactly where it was going to go. But I really enjoyed where it went. And I hope that listeners will start to understand the idea of, you know, getting, like you said, jumping in and trying the thing start from where you’re at right now.

Yeah, definitely. Just Just try it. You know?

Yeah. 100%. I love that. So that’s it for today, everybody. Thank you all for listening. And we will put all of Daniels details are going to be accompanying the podcast, of course. So please do look up Frankenstein bowls, and cursive Murphy versus the resistance. And Dan has a his first ever to documentary film on YouTube as well.

Yeah, what’s that called?

Frankie machine? The hands of Frankie machine.

Fantastic. And I’ll put some links in the in the, in the information, you know, accompanying the videos and the podcast as well, so that everybody can find out a little bit more about what you do and and we’ll hopefully get your get those projects out there a bit more. Get more eyes on them.

Yeah, thank you. Yeah,

you’re welcome. It’s absolute pleasure to have you. Oh, God, I really appreciate you for your them. It’s been fantastic. I look forward to talking to you again and watching and watching this space now, Dan, to see what you do next. So that’s it for today. I’ll sign off now. Thanks.

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