OSM: Who were your musical influences growing up? Did anything help develop your passion for music?
Haha growing up? I’m not sure that ever happened. Music I’ve loved the most over the years, too many bands to mention, nothing very mainstream. Black Sabbath, The Who, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd all the old school stuff. Good old AC/DC. But so many less aged bands that are special like Cold Play, Stereophonics, Supergrass, there is a huge list. Pretty much anything that is not Country, Hip-hop or Ed Sheeran.
My passion for music grew from being able to write music from an early age.. trying to play any instrument I picked up, I only ever wanted to make up tunes, even without knowing how to play. I still quite often make up new chords as I go. I never learned any covers numbers, never had the urge. I need to be creative.
OSM: Your debut album, 'One', is out now. What can you tell us about the songwriting process?
Now this might sound a bit silly. The songs that I write appear to me like spirits might appear to a clairvoyant. I am just the medium through which they emerge from their other worldly hiding places. Usually lying in bed, while deep in thought or half asleep my fingers autonomously move over the guitar fretboard, and I'll suddenly realise a new melody has appeared. They are then like children which I tenderly nurture and raise to maturity.
And for this reason I feel it important to find the courage to record them. I'm not very much of a wanna be rock star, I just want the songs and melodies to have their chance to thrive. It feels like now that I am releasing them on CD and Online, I am also releasing them as in setting them free.
OSM: Is there an overall theme running through the album? How did you decide which songs to include?
The theme that runs through the album is not a conceptual theme but a sound quality theme. The song ‘One’ features a full orchestra, ‘Jail Keeper Eyes’ features ‘Harpsicord’ and ‘To the Limit’ is a full electric affair. But there is a consistency to the songs, the theme, and that is me.
It’s been 5 years since I found my old guitar hiding in the cupboard under the stairs, and again renewed my passion for song writing. Since than I have written over 80 songs.
Choosing the songs for the Album was merely a case of sprinkling some the 1st songs I wrote within the last 5 years with some of the more recent. All my songs are at about the same complexity and quality, and I intend to record them all at some point. The trouble is I write songs quicker than I can record them.
OSM: What was the reasoning behind not releasing any singles from the album?
I didn’t know how good my songs were. I liked them obviously. I just wanted to record them for friends and family. It’s only after I had recorded a few songs and the feedback I got was so encouraging that I was convinced by the studio I should release them as an album.
Singles I will release next time.
OSM: Our favourite song is 'To The Limit'. What can you tell us about that track?
The music I wrote in December 2022, not long before Christmas, and I was struggling to think up a story for the lyrics. However, I managed to find some of old lyrics that I wrote for a song written so many years ago I can’t remember (probably when at Uni), and they fit perfectly for the verses, but the chorus is contemporary.
OSM: Are there any particular tracks on 'One' that are personal favourites?
Well your favourite track is also my son’s favourite track ‘To the Limit’. Matt Brook, who is lead guitarist and recording engineer, his favourite is ‘Screaming Blue Murder’, but I don’t have a favourite. Would be like choosing which of your children you love most. It’s funny actually, my son thinks to the limit sounds better with just me singing with acoustic guitar. There’s no pleasing some people. I’m quite proud of the vocal quality of ‘Children of the Night’.
OSM: What's next for Stuart Lawrence?
Next is an Arena Tours around South America… haha, only joking, but the Album is proving very popular in the Americas.
A single called Halloween (novelty song) released 27th October, and now back in the recording Studio, with the second album ‘A collection of Short Stories, vol 2’, again a mix of old and new songs, and I might possibly suggest even better songs.