Interview: Five Minutes with Andy Martin

 Image credit: Ali Rasoul – Animal House Reference

Music filled with buoyant guitar riffs and charming vocals, rising indie-rock musician Andy  Martin has shared his new single ‘Heat Of It All’. First scouted at a performance by world-acclaimed musician and singer James Morrison, Andy would attend studies at Morrison’s school Mt Gambier Academy soon after that. The musician is currently under the mentorship of renowned rock music legend Ian Haug (Powderfinger and The Church). ‘Heat Of It All’ premiered via CLOUT Magazine and was recorded at  Airlock Studios (Ian Haug) and Andy’s previous single releases saw his stream rate rise to 80 000 plays on Spotify alone.

We find out more about this promising act in this exclusive. 

Set the tone for us. Why the arts?

Being able to let any sort of my creative bone in my body shine through, and the main reason I play music is to make people happy. That’s what we should all strive for in life, isn’t it?!

Which comes first when you’re producing – the sound or the idea?

9 times out of 10 it’s the idea. I build/create sounds around heightening that idea. Normally there’s a lyric/melody I hold on to and then everything revolves around that.

Does your material feature any collaborations?

A song on my upcoming EP features vocals from an amazing woman, Bianca Power. I can’t wait to share that with everyone.

What’s on your current playlist?

Yumi Zouma, Sam Fender, Hazlett, John Mayer, Maggie Rogers, Shannen James, Spacey Jane, Gretta Ray & so much more!

Tell us about the chemistry you have with your fans on stage.

It’s amazing. Seeing people smile, dance, cry, laugh and sing to your music is a feeling I will never take for granted. I CAN’T WAIT TO DO IT ALL AGAIN!!!!!!!

What techniques do you experiment with to get your original sound?

Playing around with a lot of different guitar textures and also incorporating horns into all of my tracks. Sometimes there’s something that I didn’t initially have in mind that can really elevate a track. Some of the pulsing/experimental synths have been a real addition to some of the tracks on my upcoming releases.

Take us through a day in the recording studio.

As it’s just me and a producer, it is just a matter of layering on layering. Start with the rhythm guitars and bass, then chuck some synths on top of that. Then we might add some lead guitars on that. From here, maybe some more synths/horns. By mid arvo we will pump out some backing vocals and lead vocals. Then it is just a matter of seeing what else can be added on top to heighten the tracks. 

Normally by lunchtime, the “bones” of the song are there. It’s an amazing feeling sitting there at around 8pm when all of the tracking is done. to just be like, “Damn, that’s a song.” 

As a musician, and it might not be the same for all musicians, but I get quite apprehensive not knowing if my music is “good enough”, so when you get to the end of the day and you have something you’re proud of, it’s a great feeling.

Was there a specific moment in your life where you thought, “this is what I want to do”?

I’ve always wanted to “do it”, but a pretty defining moment for me was one I got the mastered track back for ‘Let This Go Again’, my first single. I was overjoyed and really thought that it was like an epiphany. I have played shows and music my whole life and always want to do this. But this year, with this new project, really cemented that. I can’t wait to see what the next chapter is for me and I know that music is going to be at the forefront. I am very proud of this EP and I am hoping this will be my full-time gig by next year.

Any emerging artists on your radar?

Hope D, Sycco & Shannen James. Three AMAZING female artists out of Australia. You have got to check them out!

What gets your creative juices flowing?

When I hear stories from friends, sometimes I hold on/can’t stop thinking about a story and some of my songs revolve around that. In a lot of the songs I have finished recently, an underlying theme of mental health has shone through. This has been a tough time for everyone, myself included, and I know that I haven’t been myself at times. It is amazing to get that emotion out in this way.

Take us through your collection of gear, tech, or software that accompanies your creative expression.

I’m a pretty simple person when it comes to gear. From the technical side of it, I am happy to spend a little more and get a professional to handle the recording/mixing side of it. I prefer to just 100% focus on the music. 

In saying that, I have an amazing Sonic Blue Fender Telecaster Nashville Deluxe & Taylor acoustic. They are my babies and will be played on probably every single track I record for my entire life. Some of the guitar pedals I have and play with give me some great inspiration as well.

Any side projects you’re working on?

Not at this stage… but I am always open to exploring new creative sounds.

How have you refined your craft since you entered the industry?

Yeah, 100%. I have recorded in various studios over the last 7/8 years and I personally believe all of my latest work has been a bit of a step up from what I have done previously. Over the years, I have practiced LOTS more guitar so I am actually starting to get ‘okay’ now.

Breakdown the news for us: what can we expect from you this year?

EP in November and shows surrounding this!

Famous last words?

See you at Splendour!

Follow Andy Martin: