Life is a journey; and on that journey, we experience a multitude of thoughts and emotions. Different emotions evoke different responses that are based upon each individual’s unique persona and life experience. Some people turn to social interaction. Others might shut themselves in seclusion. Harp Samuels turns to music.
Preparing for the release of his five-track EP Even There on August 14th, we were able to catch up with the Australian singer/songwriter/producer/photographer (can we say multi-talented?) and talk about his inspiration and process. Read on below!
RL: Your sound is incredibly unique. What is your creative process?
HS: Thank you! It usually starts with emotion. Things that are happening in my life/ the world around me, and then I’m also greatly influenced by the albums and artists that I’m currently listening to. The emotion always dictates the tone of the project, but it generally starts with a feeling.
RL: You’re a multi-instrumentalist – are you self-taught or did you have training? Is there a particular instrument that you enjoy playing more than others?
HS: I’m a total hack. Self-taught in every way. I’ve played guitar since I was 14, had my first session work gig when I was 17 and it all went from there! I really adore the production process all around, so mapping drums and putting all the layers together is certainly one of my favourite parts! Also a huge synth fan.
RL: What inspired you to create music?
HS: I was raised in a fairly musical family, so it started with environment. The ‘call’ toward being a singer/ songwriter was born when I went through some very difficult life experiences and turned to music to help me through it. I started wondering if perhaps I could write songs that someone/ somewhere out there would need one day. My inspiration came from how much I was impacted by singer/ songwriters, and particularly the vulnerable ones.
RL: Your newest EP, Even There, is set to release on August 14th. Talk to us about that.
HS: Yes it is! It’s exciting for sure. It has 3 musical singles and 2 spoken word pieces. We mixed in analogue on an SSL desk which was a lot of fun, and really gives songs that ‘old school’ warm vibe. I’m looking forward to any conversations that come out of this project.
RL: Which track off the new EP did you most enjoy creating?
HS: “Silver”. I’ve been sitting on the hook for ages, and didn’t quite know what to do with it until I started writing about lost innocence. Once the theme was there, the song was easy to finish. I had a great time using the vocoder on my synth and totally improvised the instrumental section while I was working on the track which was super fun!!
RL: In what major way has music affected your life?
HS: Music has been a big part of getting me through tough times. The moment things are intense there are specific songs that help me keep going, which I find so powerful. I also really enjoy hearing different artists and getting into their unique sound.
RL: A world without music would be…
RL: Who are some of your favorite electronic artists?
HS: I’m really into M83, Daft Punk, Rüfus, College, Clock Opera, Miike Snow, the album Further by the Chemical Brothers, and any folktronic.
RL: What would you be doing if not for music?
RL: What else can we expect from you in 2019?
HS: Oh so many things! I’ve already finished writing my next project, which is going to be fully based around ‘connection’ and will combine music, film, photography and art. It might take some time, but watch this space!