Halifax Pop Explosion:: Featured Artist - David Myles

Perhaps you remember, more than likely you don't, but I opened our coverage of the Halifax Pop Explosion with a piece on our old friend Joel. As I mentioned at the time, Joel is playing October 20th at St. Mathew's church, but we've since found out he's playing an acoustic set. This is going to be a great show, not only because Joel will no doubt rock the acoustic house, but because he's being joined on the bill by David Myles. For those not in the know, David's a singer/songwriter originally from Fredericton, now based in Halifax. He also released a fantastic album last year called Things Have Changed. I gave it a pretty glowing review earlier this year on the hill, and after listening to the album quite a bit since then, I think the album might be even better than I thought at the time.

Obviously we're excited about this show, and we were also excited that David agreed to answer some questions for us as part of our preview for the show. I was a little bit worried that he might've been offended by my review, because I suggested he resembled Stephen Colbert (certainly a positive in my book as Colbert is awesome), but he couldn't have been nicer about the whole thing. So not only is he a talented musician, but he's a super nice guy on top of it, so enjoy the interview and if you're going to be in Halifax, check out the show on October 20th while there's still tickets available

HH: Your last album was called Things Have Changed, have things changed for you since the release of that album and the success you've had with it?

DM: I think the biggest change has been that I'm getting more and more comfortable and confident doing what I do (at least am trying to do). I've been lucky enough to get to play tons of shows since releasing the record and have really learned a lot about performing and playing. Particularly with a band, which has been great.

HH: As an international songwriting award winner (I don't mind giving you a shameless plug), do you get more satisfaction from the writing process of from the performance aspect?

DM: For me they go hand in hand. I love writing a tune particularly when I can hear it being performed. I don't usually get to far in the process if I don't think it'll work in the live format. At least not these days. That's what kind of motivates a lot of the choices I make, in terms of moods, or tempos or those kind of things. I want to make sure what I want to express is going to translate to the people I'll eventually sing it to.

HH: The song you won for, When It Comes My Turn, is truly a great song with the kind of optimistic outlook you don't see too much these days, can you talk a bit about the inspiration behind it?

DM: For me that song was kind of like a memo I was writing myself to make sure I wouldn't become a cynical grump sometime down the road. You see a lot of people that tend towards pessimism and cynicism as they go through more and more and I wanted to make sure that that wasn't going to happen. Maybe it was a quarter life crisis or something, I don't know. But I really did want it to convey optimism and humour. Hopefully it does. And I can't tell you how happy it makes me that it resonates with folks. It's great.

HH: I read you were in California (Yosemite at that) to play the Strawberry Music Festival, which featured some pretty impressive artists (Lucinda Williams, Dr. John, Son Volt, and James Hunter), was that as amazing as it sounds?

DM: It was totally wicked. Playing at it was amazing but seeing the other acts blew the roof off for me. It was super inspiring and just what I needed. Highlights for me were James Hunter, a soul singer from the UK that was unreal, and a bluegrass band from Kentucky called Dry Branch Fire Squad. They had the most unbelievable banter I have ever heard by a long shot. I cried for gosh sake. and I can't say many shows do that for me. It was insane.

HH: I believe Joel is doing a solo acoustic set, are you playing solo as well or with some backup? Do you like being up there on your own or do you prefer having a band with you?

DM: I think I'll be doing the show solo too. It's impossible though for me to say which I like more. I love them both. I've been really keen on developing the band thing for sure lately cause it opens a lot of cool possibilities. And it's super fun just to play with the guys I've been playing with. But the solo thing is kind of where I started and something I'll always do. it's a really different experience and because of that I'm really into keeping up doing both. really just depends on the venue and vibe mainly.

HH: know you've been touring like crazy, but have you started working on a new album? Will you be debuting any new material during your Explosion set? (Perhaps some unfair pressure to put on you!)

DM: I have been working a new record. thanks for asking. It's actually getting pretty close to being all tracked. We're going to start mixing in December. I'm super excited about it. Looking to release it in March, 08. And yeah, I'll be playing lots of stuff from the new record. I'm really bad at sticking to the stuff that has been recorded already. I really like playing stuff when it's fresh.

HH: If you had to name one Halifax "must-do" for fans, or even the other bands, to do when they're in Halifax, what would it be? Thanks again man, really good of you

DM: I would say going to see Morgan Davis at Bearly's on Thursday night. he plays every Thursday usually and he kicks ass. Wicked guy and one of the best blues players/singers you could see anywhere.

Great interview, big thanks to David for taking the time to chat with us.

MP3:: David Myles - Things Have Changed

MP3:: David Myles - When it Comes My Turn


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