Today, we sat down with Jacob and the Starry Eyed Shadows to talk inspiration to write music, heroes, and much more. Be sure to check out their music below after the interview!
Here is the interview:
What is your inspiration to write your music? Is it your surroundings?
My inspirations can come from anywhere really. Generally they come from feelings and emotions generated by lived experiences or ideas about themes/stories which have had some kind of impact on me. Sometimes it comes from my surroundings. I live on the rugged west coast of Scotland which is a very beautiful and atmospheric part of the world so there’s lots of inspiration all around. The people here are very tied to the land and the area, so there’s a great emotional attachment to the place. We are surrounded by the sea and I spend a lot of time at the beach so that is a big inspiration to me. It’s vastness and beauty, but at the same time it’s power and unforgiving relentlessness. My latest song release is called ‘We Are Everything (and that’s alright)’ and these ideas about the ocean feature in it quite significantly.
What type of music did you listen to growing up?
I listened to all sorts of stuff. To be honest it’s pretty much the same stuff I listen to now. I’m stuck in a bit of time loop where music is concerned. I listen to mostly guitar music, mostly rock (punk, grunge, indie, alternative etc) but also folky stuff too. I also grew up listening to a lot of soul and Motown music, as well as hip hop and jazz and things like that. Music that has something to say basically.
Is there someone you looked up to as a hero?
In musical terms it would have to be Bruce Springsteen and Billie Holiday. Springsteen mainly in terms of his song-writing genius. His theatrical style of story-telling charged with spirit and emotion is one of a kind. There’s no one else who comes close. Born to Run must be the greatest album of all time…surely? And Billie was also so unique in the way she changed the face of jazz with her personal style. The way you can feel her emotions as she sings, she doesn’t sing a song – it almost bleeds out of her. Again, there’s no one else who can come close. It can genuinely bring you to tears. And to have gone through what she did in her life and stand up to it all and still achieve what she did is heroic by any standard.
If you weren’t a musician, would you be doing today?
I’d probably be playing a lot more football than I do now. Those were my two main passions growing up; music and football, and still are today. Music won out in the end as my main pastime, as I grew up and some things started taking priority over others. But although I don’t play as much anymore, I still love my football and am a season ticket holder at my beloved Rangers.
What advice do you have for our fans out there that want to create music?
Just do what you feel and create what comes from you and feels natural. Don’t focus on sounding like someone else or copying other people. Music is about self-expression so find your voice and just go with it. It doesn’t matter if it doesn’t sound like you’d planned. So long as it’s your voice, that’s all that matters.