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Introducing... Liam B. Smith

A website called PushPowerPromo, which helps aspiring musicians get their music out there, tagged my blog as their tip of the day, because if you submit you music I will listen to it, no matter what. And whilst I don't get chance to reply to them all, I get chance to give some feedback to quite a few of them. Liam B. Smith contacted me to listen to his new single, Morning Glory, and I loved it. It was so good that I had to invite him to partake in my 'Introducing...' series which is ever growing with artists. Liam has been a great sport and has answered every question I could throw at him, and he's insanely talented. See what we spoke about below...

Question. Firstly, What made you want to start making music?
Liam B. Smith: My story here’s probably different than most. I’ve never thought myself to be naturally gifted in music, but I’ve always had a bit of an interest. One day, I felt that God was calling me to do things with music and I’ve been pursuing since then.

Q. What was it like getting into the studio for the first time?
LBS: The “studio” in which my EP and single were recorded is my bedroom. I have yet to record something of my own in a professional studio, although I did record backup/gang vocals for my favorite band, One Ok Rock, at a studio in North Hollywood last year, which was amazing.

Q. Who were your biggest influences?
LBS: One Ok Rock. They’re not that big in the U.S., yet, but they will be.

Q. And was it a conscious decision to continue using your real name or did you just not want a 'stage name'?
LBS: I really wanted to roll with a band and go under a band name, but haven’t found anyone half decent to play with. Using my real name is a strategic move. I don’t want to pick some obscure stage name and then end up dropping it sometime down the road and having to start from scratch. My real name will always be with me.

Q. Your new single is called 'Morning Glory', is that an ode to britpoppers Oasis?
LBS: You guessed it. The original story of that song is kinda cool, at least I think. See next question.

Q. What's the story behind the song?
LBS: Usually songs form with initial piece—a melody, a guitar part, a hook, and everything builds off that. But with this one, I was kind of just hit with a vibe out of nowhere. I grabbed a bass off my wall and started doing this really simple bass line. But at the same time, I had a chord progression, verse melody (which was later scrapped in favor of the one that’s in the track), and a drum beat. They all came together. I said to myself, “I’m feeling an Oasis vibe with this one.” But as soon as I said that (and I remember frowning at myself after having mumbled it allowed) I realized that I’d only ever heard one Oasis song (you know the one, you all do). It was weird because this didn’t even sound remotely like Wonderwall to me.

I was hard pressed for lyrics with this one, so I ordered an old CD of the Oasis album “What’s the Story (Morning Glory)” on eBay. When it arrived, I pulled out the liner notes and read all of the lyrics without listening to the music. Then I wrote 2 and ½ verses to my song (which I later scrapped) and the chorus, which stuck. Then I went back and listened to “What’s the Story (Morning Glory)” three times over before writing the verses that I actually used for my song.

After I had gotten the initial mix of the track back from my producer, CJ Teffner, I played it on my car stereo for a friend. He said, “That sounds a lot like those guys who play Wonderwall. I mean, Wonderwall is the only song of theirs I’ve heard, but still.”

I picked the name Morning Glory because I read somewhere that Oasis nicked the term “Wonderwall” from the title of George Harrison’s solo album and used it as a neologism to mean someone you can’t stop thinking about. I decided to nick “Morning Glory” as a neologism for all you want to become.

Q. What's the biggest hinderence whilst making music?
LBS: Lack of faith. Letting doubts tell me that this was not what I was made to do.

Q. And why do you think your music sets you apart from the competition?
LBS: What competition?

Q. If you could collaborate with any artist, who would it be?
LBS: One Ok Rock. Dave Grohl. Maybe Sia.

Q. What's your recording process like, is it easy or is it very challenging?
LBS: I tracked my EP in my bedroom and basement and mixed/mastered it myself. It was way too much work. I’m glad to have been able to work with CJ on Morning Glory, since I just had to track everything and sent it off to him. That’s much better for my creative process.

Q. And how often are you going in to the studio?
LBS: I want to record as much music as possible. Right now, I’m trying to get my head around a potential new song. I want every release to be better than the last. That’s basically been the pattern so far, and I’m optimistic about where that will put me post-Morning Glory.

Q. What's your future plans for your music?
LBS: I have no idea where it will take me. I’m just focusing on writing good songs right now.

Q. And finally, how would you describe your music?
LBS: My sound is evolving too rapidly to pin down. I used to say Foo Fighters meets Goo Goo Dolls, but that doesn’t make sense anymore. Just listen to the darn songs.

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