THE SECRET WEAPONS OF SOUTHSIDE CAFÉ (Part II)
The Internet is full of podcasts, blogs and sites where musicians, producers and other experts discuss trends and developments in the music industry. A frequently recurring theme is that artists and songwriters must strive to be unique, to develop their own style and stand out from the crowd. I always follow these discussions with mixed feelings. Certainly, it is quite amazing when artists develop a sound of their own, such as the guitar playing of Jimi Hendrix, the operatic choirs sung Queen and the mumbling songstyle of Billie Eilish. But at the same time, I don't think it's a particularly sensible pastime to worry about whether one's music is unique or not.
First of all, the creation of music is always based on music that the artists themselves have heard and enjoyed. We all are standing on the shoulders of giants. Even Jimi Hendrix had idols that inspired him and influenced his guitar playing. And after all, surely the important thing must be that the music sounds good, not that it sounds different from everything else?
Secondly, there is always the risk that unique-ness will become a straitjacket and a prison. For instance: I really love AC/DC but would probably be very disappointed if they ever tried something new. A slow ballad for once or a nice piano in a song or two to add a new musical flavour? Get out of here! In AC/DC, everything must always remain exactly the same! Keep up the good work!
In Southside Café, we have no ambition to be unique. We love to get inspired by our own favourite artists and enjoy when our listeners comment on our songs and interpret their sources of inspiration. Anders and me spend hours and hours discussing music and analysing different genres. We constantly send songs to each other saying "Listen to this!" or "Let's go in this direction next time!". From that perspective, Southside Café will always be a Magical Mystery Tour through our own record collections.
But we also have a secret weapon: we are restless. If we have tried a certain direction in one song, we tend to try another direction for the next. After all, there is so much good music to be inspired by. And remember that we both grew up with The Beatles – a band that constantly switched between styles and genres. For us, it was quite natural that the “White album” included both heavy-rockers such as “Helter Skelter” and silly tunes like “Martha My Dear”. Great songs but quite different.
You will notice our restlessness in the three songs we will release this autumn. They are very different in nature. They relate to different genres of music and to different periods in the history of rock. We really hope that you will enjoy the song “Life on March”, due to be release on August 23. But bear in mind, that the subsequent songs, released in October and December, will sound quite different.