Charlie Gradon

by the partae

How has this year felt for you as a creative: what has been inspiring to you the most, as an artist?

Ups & downs always. This year I was determined to start releasing music. However, I often find inspiration in procrastination. With music videos to make, budgets to stress about, and all the things that come with releasing music, I found myself demoing out the next record instead.

 Who are you listening to right now, that would be your top new music recommendation?

Blake Mills is a new one for me. I love his approach to producing and sound design. Andy Shauf is yet to miss and Julia Jacklin’s new record is spinning a lot at our place.

What has been exciting you about your music community this year?

During lockdowns I started doing remote recording sessions. I wrote and recorded songs with people in Melbourne, Sydney and even Sweden and released them. It was a great way to keep the juices flowing and work on something without that emotional pressure.

Let’s talk ‘Black & White’ – what significance does the song have for you now it has been some time since the writing and recording process has been completed?

‘Black & White’ is about witnessing the breakdown of a relationship, and how quickly we label each other good/bad or more to the point black/white when in reality there is so much more nuance to it. It often reminds me to step back and withhold the judgement of others.

Can you tell us a bit about the process, while we’re on it, what was the best part about working on this song and what did you learn about yourself as a creative, as a result?

It’s taught me that I tend to process most of my deeper thoughts and feelings about what’s happening around me by writing. Which is a wonderful outlet to have, albeit a crutch. It’s got a lot of visceral aggressive energy, which is not something I feel comfortable expressing in the day to day. When we play it on stage I feel like the strongest man in the universe.

Is ‘Black & White’ part of a larger Charlie Gradon project and if so, can you tell us more about your plans for it?

 It’s the first single off my debut album to come next year. It’s the first body of work that I’m truly proud of. I can’t wait to share it with the world (and get started on the next one).

Do you find ideas for new music and songs come easily to you, or do you have to be in the studio for the inspiration to hit?

The home studio is a big part of it. Catching inspiration with your digital hands is such a gift. But my phone is also clogged with notes and voice memos of song ideas while I’m out in the world.

What’s your favourite thing to do when you need to chill out?

Drink coffee and make things worse.

Your favourite food spot?

If I’m alone I’ll often forget to eat. I wouldn’t say I have a favourite spot, but when I eat I do it passionately and fast.

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