Music Q&A:
Brian Mackey

The New York singer, songwriter, guitarist, pianist and composer chats while on the road promoting his new single Underwater

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What informs your music and songwriting?
My inspiration usually comes from real-life events and from stories and people I meet along the way. Or sometimes it can come out of a dream. Inspiration is always a surprise visitor.

How have you evolved as an artist over the years?
In ways that are hard to comprehend. When we start making music, touring and playing shows, we go into it like we are a baby – without any knowledge or preconception. And in ways it’s more innocent. As you develop, you begin to pick up knowledge from crowd reaction, show and venue owners and just from each mile you travel down the road.

What are you up to at the moment artistically?
At the moment I’m working on songs for another release and I’m on the road somewhere in Sweden with my bandmates and tour team heading towards Norway. The sonic telepathy which is shared with other musicians is very inspiration also.

What’s on your rider?

I don’t need much. I ask for bananas, both cold and room temperature water and protein bars. Usually tea too.

Tell us your most embarrassing or surreal experience.

I’m touring with all musicians from Italy. And this isn’t embarrassing, but it’s funny. So something maybe comes on the radio, some cheesy rock ballad from the 1980s, and all of a sudden they will break into song with their whole heart (and one will say, “I’m feeling romantic!”).

What song do you wish you’d written?
Piano Man, Billy Joel. I don’t need to say anymore.

What’s your worst lyric?

“Don’t want no more, 90s shit – Nirvana was cool, and maybe Pearl Jam, but that was it….”

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