Music Q&A:
Howie Payne

The Stands frontman releases his second solo album on 27 Oct and heads out on tour. He plays Liverpool Buyers’ Club, 12 Oct, Leeds Belgrave Music Hall, 13 Oct and Manchester’s Night People, 15 Oct

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What informs your music and songwriting?
Whatever’s happening that I pick up on through my aerial – you know, music, books, TV, newspapers, conversations. It’s like something just chimes and you get a flash from it and for a moment a door opens.

How have you evolved as an act over the years?
Well, my last couple of tours have been solo acoustic concerts. You have to approach it in a different way and I had to learn how to do it so it made sense for the songs and was, you know, good to be at. I’ve been rehearsing with my band for the October tour and I’m finding I’m able to get into the moment of the song more, and really hear it as it’s happening. It’s not that I didn’t get to that place before but I think I had to work a bit harder to get there.

What are you up to at the moment artistically?
I’m just about to release my new album Mountain and to go on tour, so I’m playing a lot of music with my band. We’re playing some songs I did with The Stands and some from my Bright Light Ballads record that I’ve never played live with a band before, so my head’s into that at the moment – very cool.

What’s on your rider?
Water, wine, beer – all the classics.

Tell us your most embarrassing or surreal experience.
Oh, I dunno, the whole thing is pretty surreal, don’t you think?

What song do you wish you’d written?
Strawberry Fields Forever

What’s your worst lyric?
I don’t see lyrics that way, you know. Some of the worst can be the best, and they can mean so many different things at different times depending on where your head is at, or how you say them.

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Howie Payne

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