Frankie Oliver – Telling Me His Story
Singer-songwriter and guitarist Frankie Oliver has returned to the world of music after a hiatus with his new studio album ‘Here I Am’ on Good Deeds Music. Frankie very kindly sat down with JLTT in the lead up to its June release and we spoke about new material, influences, the city of London and much more. So grab a drink, sit back and enjoy…
- You were signed to Island Records by Trevor Wyatt in the early 90s and released the album ‘Looking for the Twist’. What did you learn about a) yourself as a person and b) the music industry?
I learnt that if I put my heart and soul into something I could achieve anything I wanted to, as it’s proved since. I also learned that the music industry is very unforgiving and you have to really stand up for yourself otherwise you get trodden on.
- Your brand new album entitled ‘Here I Am’ is being released on 9th June. Could you tell me about the creative process for the record? Did you start with the lyrics or the music?
The creative side of the recording on the album wasn’t something that we really thought about it just seemed to happen there were sometimes obviously that we heard things differently but overall I think we were all singing from the same hymn sheet I tend to start with chord progressions when I’m writing songs but I do sometimes hear a hook in my head and build a song from that followed by the lyrics.
- Describe your hometown in five words please
It’s a tiny little village.
- Interestingly, you qualified as a black cab driver in the city of London to provide for your family. What is your favourite thing about London and are there any particular music venues that hold a special place in your heart?
London is the most amazing place in the world I sort of took it for granted and didn’t realise how beautiful London really was until I started doing the knowledge to become a London taxi driver it was then that all the history came to me and made me realise how special London really is. There are two music venues in London that have a special place in my heart one is the Forum in Kentish Town where I did the gig supporting Ziggy Marley, my idols son and secondly The Hundred Club (100 Club) because it’s going to be my first gig in London since that day and it’s a venue I always wanted to play.
- Could you please tell me the story behind the track ‘My Kinda Woman’?
The story behind my kinda woman is quite simply the real reason I made my comeback it was a melody that was going round and round my head at 3:30 in the morning and when I woke it was still there so I wrote it that day and it’s what started this whole process of recording a new album.
- Are you planning to promote this album with any live shows?
As I said I’m doing my first gig in London in 20 years at the 100 Club on 7th June and we will see what follows from there.
- Have you ever been a collector or completest in any sense? Your confession please?
I wouldn’t say I’m a collector but I do have a real passion for guitars especially old ones.
- Suggest two recordings by any artists that put you in mind of the seaside or the coast?
I would have to say Cottage in Negril by Tyrone Taylor I don’t know why. the other one would be probably any UB40 song because when they were doing a gig in Brighton some friends and I Blagged our way in to the arena whilst they were doing the sound check and when they finished we ended up playing football with them and the roadies , where the audience would be standing that night. I will never forget that day.
- What personal advice on relationships (romantic or otherwise) would you now give to the 14 year old edition of yourself?
Make sure you get a good education because you will regret it later on in life if you don’t.
- Is there a novel or book that you would like to create a soundtrack for?
I wouldn’t say there is a novel or a book that I would like to create a soundtrack for but would love to do one for a James Bond movie.
- Gregory Isaacs or Gregory Porter? (Please feel free to say something about each)
Gregory Isaac’s had his own unique style and there was no one in the reggae industry quite like him he was the cool ruler simple as that. Gregory Porter and I share a tragic loss in our lives we both lost our mothers too early in life and I know Gregory Porter feels the same pain as me I can hear it in his lyrics.
- Is there an album that you can play all the way through and enjoy each time?
Yes an album I will never get tired of listening to is Kaya the first album I ever bought by Bob Marley.
- Can you please tell me about the band personnel on the new album?
The band I have put together for this album has made me so excited because they are all extraordinary musicians in their own right and have been in the industry for many years playing with top artists.
- What two things have you learned NEVER to do on stage? (Please tell all)
Two things I have learned not to do on stage number one is not go on drunk and number two is don’t turn round to look at the band member who has made a mistake because I wouldn’t like it done to me.
- Have you ever been tempted to try the talent show route at any time in your life?
Funnily enough I did a talent show very early on in my career it was on Sky TV and it was more a comedy show than a talent show hosted by Keith Chegwin.
- Can you dance? If we asked your family, what would THEY say?
Haha great question I wouldn’t say I’m the greatest dancer in the world but I do have rhythm if you ask my sons they would say no I can’t dance.
(Many thanks to Frankie, Pete Sargeant and Steve Rose at Emms Publicity)
(All Photos Supplied By Artist)
Frankie Oliver’s new studio album ‘Here I Am’ is released by Good Deeds Music on Friday 9th June 2017.
The single ‘Tell Me’ is out now also on Good Deeds Music and you can watch the official music video in this article.
In addition, Frankie will be performing his first headline London show in twenty years at the famous 100 Club, Oxford Street, London, United Kingdom on Wednesday 7th June 2017. Tickets are available here: http://bit.ly/2qGg8fM
For more information visit his official website here: http://bit.ly/2pyRRbA