Interview – Kramies (english version).
Hello Kramies, how are you?
Hello! It’s very nice to be able to talk with you again. I am good, I’m at home sitting In front of a large window thats looking out at the trees which are changing to autumn leaves.
Last time we spoke, it was about your great EP The Wooden Heart that received a warm welcome in France : are you happy about it? What about the other countries where it was released?
Thank you for saying it was great. That always means a lot to me and is nice to hear. I had no idea The Wooden Heart would be heard & enjoyed by so many people. It still surprises me to this day. France and it’s wonderful people were a very big part of The Wooden Heart being heard. It seem to have received warm welcomes in other countries as well as France which I am very grateful and happy about. As an artist you never know if people will like what you create so it’s been a wonderful journey these past years.
What have you been up to since that release?
Well I’ve been traveling a lot and trying to write more.
I promised myself I would take a break for a few months and just write new little songs but it seems a lots been happening so I haven’t been able to slow down yet.
This past April I released a new single called The Fate That Never Favored Us and I also recorded a few other new songs for projects. I’m finally finding time to sit and be calm which always makes me happy.
Could you tell us about your tour in France…
First the Grand Theatre d’Angers? What an experience, isn’t it ?
That was an incredible experience! France is like a beautiful dream and I loved being there. The shows were really timed out well and easy to travel to which makes things really enjoyable.
The Grand Theatre show was so amazing to be a part of! To be in such beautiful old architecture in the wonderful town of Angers, France was amazing. Being surrounded by so much beauty is very inspiring and brings so much more life and creativity to performing live for me.
I remember walking the streets of Paris at night and feeling how wonderful it felt to just watch the city and to be there. There’s so much art and culture to be experienced there. Next time I visit I will definitely stay longer just to sit and watch and write.
What did you think of A Singer Must Die show?
I guess you were happy to share that moment with Manuel, the band, Jérôme, … ?
Wow! That was truly amazing to watch Manuel and A Singer Must Die.
It was very powerful to watch them with the orchestra. Their show left me speechless and so happy. Manuel and I have been friends for many years and it felt very natural to share the stage with him, like two brothers reunited after years of travel.
It was amazing to be with Jerome as well. He and I have also been friends for a while. His brilliant photography has been three of my album covers and to be able to have him shot photos of my show was truly and honor. He is one of the best photographers and visual artists I’ve ever known. His art has so much detail and depth that I see something new every time I look at his work. I love working with Jerome and Manuel and I’m looking forward to spending more time with them all again soon.
What else did you do in France? Did you enjoy your stay? What did you like?
I definitely ate a lot! The food there is perfect and the hotels I stayed in were lovely. It was a trip full of culture which I love. I must say that the cheese in France is my favorite! I could live there for the cheese…
I was also lucky enough to do a few video sessions and interviews as well as shows. I wish I was able to do more but I was only there a short time.
Some of my best memories of the trip were my walks. I’m always inspired by old cities and beautiful building. France has so many enchanting places to walk.
What about your new EP? When did you decide to record it? Why live sessions in France?
The new live EP Forêts Antiques was recorded live from The Grand Theatre show. At first I wasn’t sure if I wanted to release it but it was such a beautiful night and so full of love from everyone I decided it would be ok. I also decided to make it free download. To be able to play shows in places like The Grand Theater is very special and I wanted to share it with anyone who might like to listen. I never thought I would be able to have the chance to release a live EP so I feel very lucky to give this away to the world…
Are you happy with the final result? Does it sounds like you imagined?
Well I always have a hard time listening to myself.. I know about how things feel more then how they might sound. The night felt very unique and I think that is always the best performances. The theatre had such a big sound that I believe it recorded well and there was a lot of help to make the EP. Olivier Bucquet did an amazing work mixing the audio from the show and Chris Keffer who masters all my albums did a brilliant job editing and mastering Forêts Antiques. Because of those guys the EP really came to life.
Do you sometimes fear to fall in some kind of repetition in your compositions?
Yes. That’s why I think I always have try to slow down and take a holiday. I actually have thought about this a lot. I use to worry that my songs would all eventually sound similar. I realized recently that everything I write comes from my heart and I’ve never set out to have a particular sound or sound like anything else. The only way I know how to write is straight from my emotions and feelings. The songs that you hear are in the most honest form they can be. So if that means they might sound repetitive or similar then I’m ok with that now. My songs are truly who I am. I do think a lot more now about what instruments I use to write which helps me with changing my sound a bit.
Could you tell us about Hidden Shoal? Do you feel close to some of the other artists of the label?
Hidden Shoal has been a huge part of my growth and life for the past five years. Hidden Shoal gave me a platform to freely release my albums and I couldn’t have had a better label to work with over these years. Since I’ve signed to them in 2011 I’ve produced more and done more creatively then ever before in my life. The label is wonderful and everyone has been very helpful. Cam Merton is one of the kindest humans on earth and runs hidden shoal beautifully. Tim Clarke and Stuart Medley are also great guys who have helped me a lot. It’s a great team there and I’ve been very lucky to have signed with them. Also all three guys are amazing artists.
What are you listening at the moment ?
Right now I’m listening to the sound of traffic and birds outside my window…
I haven’t really been listening to much music lately. I’m not sure why but It seems that every time the season changes to autumn in October I love to listen to Celtic music.. There’s something about old Renaissance and Celtic music I love. It’s very enchanting.
What are your plans for the next months ?
« Settle down, bundle up and start writing when the snow will start to fall at home » ?
Yes! Ha! I’m very excited to rest through this winter and watch it snow in the mountains. I’m actually looking forward to writing for a long time and seeing what’s next. Also I very much enjoy scarfs, fireplaces, hot chocolate and Christmas time! I always wanted to grow up and be Santa Claus…
Questions from Manuel Ferrer – A Singer Must Die
Who would like to collaborate in the future?
Manuel!!!! Hahaha! Well this is a nice surprise!
I would love to collaborate with you of course!
Soon my friend !
Eventually, are you an optimistic or a pessimistic, your songs are often melancholic…
I am very optimistic. My songs definitely sound melancholic and sad at times but they always end happy and with a lot of love surrounding them.
3 great songwriters and why?
David Bowie – because of the his style and emotional depth
Simon and Garfunkel – because of the beautiful lyrics and melodies
Joanna Newsom – because of her uniqueness and obscure sound
The song you’ve written you’re the proudest and why ?
Maybe The Wooden Heart. It’s hard to say because when I listen to my own songs I always hear things I should have added or the mistakes but I feel like The Wooden Heart was the first song where I heard it for what it is. Also I know now, years later, that The Wooden Heart has small bits of all the things that have inspired me from my past. I never really have a plan for what I set out to create until I find the right images and stories. The Wooden Heart just came together easily. The same with Sea Otter Cottage. That was another that had a story close to my heart.
Do you need to doubt to write songs ?
Yes. All the time. I think it’s ok though to doubt.