The other day, I spoke with the lovely Hannah Gill! Check out the interview below, where I speak with Hannah about her upcoming EP, entitled "I Feel Awake", how she assembled her band, and what music means to her!
As a solo artist, what would you say was your earliest recollection of music in your life?
I think it was in kindergarten. I did the Christmas concert with all of the other kids and we sang ‘Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer”. Apparently, according to my Mom, it was the most soulful rendition of “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer” ever. (laughs) I think from that point, she realized that I was going to be a singer. That’s the story I tell everyone. It’s so funny to me.
And how fitting with the holidays right around the corner!
The first track I ever heard from you was your YouTube cover of Take Me To Church. What's your process like when choosing songs to cover? What kind of criteria do they have to meet for you?
I pick songs that I like. I’m never going to cover a song that I’m not a fan of. And then I need to make sure that my voice will sound good with it. I don’t want to pick a song that will sound overly poppy, or is too high if I can’t sing it. And then I want to pick one that I know other people will want to listen to. If I could listen to jazz music all day long, I would, but I know that wouldn’t get as many views as I’d want it to. So I want to pick a song that is a little bit more know to popular culture. I think that “Take Me To Church” and our most recent one by Alt-J definitely accomplish that.
You've got the I Feel Awake EP hitting stores on January 20. Good way to kick off the New Year. How did the writing process for this EP differ from anything you've worked on in the past?
I think that it’s very cheerful. We’ve definitely got the new mastered versions of “I Feel Awake” and “Love and Glory”. They’re both really good songs that’ll get you on your feet and just make you feel good. And then we’ve got a song that’s a little more…I wouldn’t say melancholy but it’s not as cheery. It’s called “Silver Screens”. I think that these songs, when I wrote them and when I had all this help, I got to work with all of these amazing musicians. I’ve really been exposed to all of this musical talent, and I’ve really tried to put that to good use and make something out of what I’ve learned.
It says in the track listing that there are two versions of the song "I Feel Awake". The album version and the original version. Is at that a demo of the song?
Well, the one that has been out, I think that is the one that is going to be the same song. The one that the video is going to be to is a more poppy take on “I Feel Awake”.
This is kind of a broad question, but do you think it’s important for an artist to have a diverse catalogue of music?
I think so! I think that all of these musicians that you hear about on the radio or just by word of mouth are very good at adapting to whatever they feel fit or doing what they want. You don’t necessarily want to stick to one thing in particular, because by branching out and doing all of these different music tastes that you like and other people like, I feel like you can reach a bigger audience as well as just expanding your musical knowledge.
How did you go about assembling the current live band that you have now?
When we first started, my guitar player, Brad, really helped me out. We got a few people together, just on a whim, to play. Brad called in friends and people that he knew, or people that he had played with before. That was just kind of the group that we stuck with. There has been no drama, no reason to dislike anyone, and they’re all just great people.
What kind of message, if any, would you like fans to walk away with after listening to your music?
I want to have music that everyone can connect to. I like to write music that people can just say they have a connection to. I think that music is so much more impactful when you can relate to it, instead of just listening to it and saying that you like the way it sounds. So I definitely want to write songs that the average person can relate to, and have it hit home.
What does music mean to you?
Everything. (laughs) If I didn’t have it, I don’t know what I would do. I’m that kid in school that annoys everyone because I can’t shut up, or I can’t stop singing or tapping my foot. Whether I’m sad or happy, music is always there. It’s a good way for me to express myself, in the least cliché way possible.
Anything else you'd like to let fans know about?
We have our music video for “I Feel Awake” that a woman named Amber Gray did. She’s amazing, and it should be coming out in mid-to-late January.
Hannah Gill's new EP, "I Feel Awake" will be available on January 20th!
This has been another Shameless Promotion.