After introducing themselves with their much-loved debut single 'Submission' earlier this year, emerging outfit Call Me Cannon are back once again to offer up the sweeping new single 'Circles'.
Channelling more of that smooth and endearing indie-rock aesthetic they are quickly earning a reputation for, 'Circles' makes for a wonderfully warm and enticing listen. With its rich and harmonious textures measured perfectly against some sweeping vocals throughout, they are continuing to prove themselves as one of the more passionate names on the rise right now.
So with the new single available to stream now, we sat down with them to find out more about their background and what has been inspiring them most lately.
What was the first instrument you fell in love with?
When I was very young, I wanted to play piano because there was one in the house and then I heard Jimmy Page play “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You” and I was smitten with the guitar. I initially studied Classical and Flamenco guitar and then fell in love with Duane Allman’s style and spent many years learning his solos. I went on to play Jazz guitar in college where I loved Jim Hall and Joe Pass.
What kind of music did you love when you were younger?
It depends on how young you are asking. As a young boy of 5, I grew up in Lexington Ky and the only radio station they had was Country and Bluegrass. It was people like Bill Monroe, Hank Sr., Dolly Parton, Roger Miller. After a while we got a rock station and I started listening to The Beatles, Stones and the Doors.
What was the first album you remember owning?
The first album I ever owned was A Hard Day’s Night. My friend had the record and we would listen to it all the time. One day he said he had signed up to play baseball but didn’t own a glove. I told him I would trade him my baseball glove for his Hard Day’s Night record. To my astonishment he said yes!
What is the one song you wished you could have written yourself?
That’s a good question because quite often I will hear a song and go man I wish I had written that. But I think the first song that comes to my mind is “Without You” by Harry Nilsson. It is simple and powerful and straight from the heart.
Do you have any habits or rituals you go through when trying to write new music?
I don’t really have any rituals or habits I just need time. If I have time alone to fiddle around, usually a melody will pop out and that melody will then create a mood. Often, when I write I don’t even know what it is about until I am knee deep in it. (When I was younger I would write a song and then live the song years later. It is an eery moment to realise that what you are going through in the present is what you wrote about in the past). Now, due to life experience, I understand what is coming out a lot quicker. It hits me like lightning and then usually the rest appears pretty quickly. The last several songs I have written I used what I call extemporaneous expulsion where I put a mic in front of me after I have the song started and just sing whatever comes out. This usually gives me plenty to work with and I can go back and clean it up. It sure beats the old way I used to write; with pencil and paper and counting syllables and stressing over one word for days. I guess this change in writing style probably goes back to not having enough time to properly torture myself anymore.
Who are your favourite artists you have found yourself listening to at the moment?
There are so many great artists out there. Lately, I have been listening to Elliott Smith. He is an amazing songwriter and has such a unique style. I like The War on Drugs and Bon Iver too. When I work out, I like to listen to Indie College Radio.
If you could open a show for anyone in the world, who would it be?
I would love to open for the Foo Fighters. David Grohl has such an amazing body of work and he and the band have been through so much. Their perseverance and love of music and each other is awe inspiring.
What do you find is the most rewarding part about being a musician?
For me it is all about the creation. The joy of writing and having something that touches my soul in an unexpected way. Also, the process of turning the song into a recording and finding the moments of inspiration when you find an unexpected riff or sound in the moment. I enjoy the journey from idea to creation the most. After the song is finished it feels like it has a life of its own separate from me and I am no longer personally attached to it, but while it is being created that is the reward for me.
And what is the most frustrating part?
With everything in life there is the other side. Where you find joy, you also find pain. For many years I felt like being a songwriter was more of a curse than a blessing. There were years and years when I would write 20-30 songs knowing they would probably never be recorded or heard. Near the end of those years my wife, at the time, told me if I didn’t stop doing music she would divorce me. Maybe she sensed my struggle and wanted to give me a way out. I told her I had been writing songs all my life and she might as well ask me to stop breathing. She stood firm and persisted, so I did the only thing I knew how. I wrote her a song about how much I loved my family and how we shouldn’t let it “Slip Away”. Interestingly, after that experience I came to view being a songwriter as a real blessing and I became more grateful for what I had been given and the life I had.
And what is the best piece of advice you have received as a musician?
I was a theory and composition major in college and had studied many styles of music in depth. My good friend and Mentor, Jim Mings, told me to “forget everything you’ve learned and play from the heart. Great music comes from the heart not the head.”
Call Me Cannon's new single 'Circles' is available to stream now. Check it out in the player below.