Q+A

Q+A With Sam Brittain

Rock n roll cowboy Sam Brittain has released a new single Hitchhiker, inspired by a real encounter with a hitchhiker on the
train across the Nullarbor Plain. The hooky new track is accompanied by a clip that acts as a fun and loving ode to Fear
and Loathing in Las Vegas, created in collaboration with Mickey Manson (Maya Cumming, Hachiku). Sam Brittain is thrilled to be back with
Hitchhiker, and took some time to bring us up to date with everything in his world

Hi, thanks for taking the time to chat with Hear 2 Zen, what have you been up to today?
Today has been a quiet one.  The rain has been coming down in sheets so inside is the place to be, a warm cup of tea and some records is on the cards. 

Tell us about yourself, how long have you been performing/creating music for?  
Ever since I can remember.  I think the first effort was rewriting the lyrics to a theme song from a popular kids show for my Nan and Pop’s 50th wedding anniversary.  I think I was around 7. 

Who are your greatest inspirations?  Why?
Musical idols and inspirations fall into two different categories most of the time for me.  My greatest inspirations tend to come from just regular people I have met and their stories.  

How do you create music?  Are you lyrics/story driven, or does the music/melody come first?  Explain your process. 
In the past I would have definitely said I was more lyrically driven however with this latest album a huge amount of time and attention to how each instrument could best support the song was given and that is entirely due to each member of the band and thor commitment to seeing it come to fruition in its best form.  

What has been your greatest challenge so far in performing/creating music?
A few years ago I became quite ill after a long stint in the cold of Irish winter.  Eventually it resulted in pneumonia and a horrid cough that caused me to require vocal surgery.

Definitely the moment the surgeon told me it was a possibility I may never sing the same again was a frightening prospect.  

Tell us about your new release, how did it come about?
The song was written a good while before it ever came into the studio for a number of reasons.  But as to why this release has come about is simple.  It was a change in focus, a change of band and playing music with my best friends.  They reinvigorated me, recharged the sound and helped me get excited about recording and performing again.  I owe a great debt to these four gentlemen.  

What advice do you have to artists who are just starting out?
Go and make music with your friends. Enjoy the simple pleasures of picking up your guitar and jamming with the people whose company you appreciate most.  If you are connected on a personal level the energy and love will be easy to discern and that affects all aspects of performance and recording.  It will affect how you feel when you play music, hear music and most importantly how your audience engages with the music.  If you have good souls around you who love you and care, then most likely you are doing the right thing from exactly the right place.  It’s simple, and fun…don’t overthink it.

Tell us your favourite Zen practice.
Definitely cooking at home and riding my motorcycle.    

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