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Interview: BIRD

5 min read

Award winning English/Irish singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Janie Price aka BIRD recently unveiled her latest project, Wider Than The Sky, a semi autobiographical short film which the musician wrote and soundtracked. Having performed alongside the likes of Emeli Sandé and world renowned violinist, Vanessa Mae, BIRD has established herself as a highly sought after musician.

Fresh from the release of new single What The Night Knows, we caught up with BIRD to talk about her musical journey, her latest single release and her fascinating film project. Here is what she had to tell us…

Brendon Veevers: Hey there. How are you BIRD and where does this interview find you?

BIRD: Hi – I’m actually on a family holiday in Sardegna for 10 days.

BV: Firstly, we have to ask about your stage name. How did BIRD come about – what made you land on this as your artist name?

BIRD: I’ve always loved Birds and the sense of freedom they represent – also it was a practical choice easy to pronounce and top of the alphabet which made sense when I first became an artist but is less helpful now Google is involved.

BV: Where does your strong passion for music and the artis in general comes from? Were you raised in a musical household?

BIRD: Not particularly musical but my Dad was always playing music and taught me to harmonise to songs at an early age  He’s partly Welsh so maybe that choir gene is in him! My mum is Irish and wrote poetry when she was younger, so I probably get a lot of the story telling from that side of my family too.

BV: You are widely known for your skills at many instruments but is there one instrument that resonates with you more than others?

BIRD: The cello as it’s the first one I learnt to play.

BV: You have a new single on its way in the shape of What the Night Knows. Can you tell us a little about this song and the inspiration behind it?

BIRD: I wrote it with my friend Jeroen Swinnen in an old Tuscan villa that gave me vivid dreams. As a child I was quite afraid of the dark and due to my parents being ill I had to stay a lot in other people’s houses. I would look at patterns in the unfamiliar ceilings and imagine all sorts of things.

As an adult the night represents something entirely different for me of course, as a musician it’s the time to perform and create. It’s also the time I ask some of my most important questions to myself and so I really wanted to write a song about that.

On the album version of this track there is a tea cup stirring and count down at the beginning which pays homage to Jordan Peele’s film Get Out which I saw during the time I was recording this track – I really felt the film connected with my song on some levels, hypnotism, a place between sleep and wake and questioning, having the strength to break through your own mental barriers.

BV: As a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, is it important for you to be involved in the full recording process?

BIRD: Absolutely – it’s a constant learning curve making music and the more I know about the whole process the more that informs how and what I write.

BV: Your music videos are also very intriguing. What the Night Knows is yet another example of your creativity when it comes to visuals for your music. How involved are you in the treatment ide of videos?

BIRD: I conceive the idea for and record the videos myself. The only help I have is with editing as I don’t have the software or skills for that. I went to art college years ago and have a degree in art so I really enjoy making the videos and putting some of my visual skills to use!

BV: You have been involved in a really exciting short film project called Wider Than The Sky which you wrote yourself as well as creating the soundtrack. Can you tell us a little about this and how the opportunity to be involved in this came about?

BIRD: It started as an email to a production company asking if they wanted to use my new music in any films they were working on – long story short they encouraged me to make a film for the music and so I wrote my first short. It’s semi autobiographical about my childhood and living with a parent suffering from cancer – ultimately it’s an optimistic story about the power of our imagination to help us through difficult times.

BV: When it comes to writing songs, what kind of songwriter would you say you are? Do you write songs from personal experiences or would you say you are more of an observational storyteller?

BIRD: I think I am both. Even if you are telling a story about someone else it is subjective, your take on the situation, which is a personal thing.  I write a lot about myself and my immediate emotions of course, but even if I write about someone or something else, it must have touched me deeply somehow otherwise I wouldn’t feel inspired to create something around it.

BV: You performed at a couple of this years early festivals – The Great Escape and Black Deer. Have you got any other live dates in the pipeline that fans can watch out for?

BIRD: I’m off to Nashville in 8 weeks to premiere my short film and play live and will have some UK dates shortly after that.

BV: Are there any other projects, releases or potentially more short films in the pipeline for fans to look out for?

BIRD: There’s definitely an album finished and waiting in the wings but first an acoustic EP later this year and even sooner a summer release for the remix of this latest single (August 2nd What The Night Knows – After Dark Remix).

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