Paul McLaney Newsletter Interview
06 Nov 2006 // An interview by Shade
1) What was your greatest achievement during 2006?
Musically? Without doubt the writing and recording of 'Edin'; finally getting around to making an album the way my favourite albums were recorded and with songs I feel are the truest representation of my musical self. It's very easy to get swept up in the commercial industry of music, especially when you are trying to make a living at it. I've discovered the reality is that the truer you are to yourself, the truer you are to everyone around you.
2) Do you have any new recordings or tours planned for 2007?
I have lots of plans that involve touring and recording...
3) What do you think could be done to make NZ music even better?
I think the focus on radio as the primary means of achieving commercial success is not altogether a healthy one. Great songs don't necessarily fit the standard radio format. I hear more and more songs everyday that are indistinguishable - sort of mix'n'match soundalikes. I don't think it's advancing our own sense of cultural identity/uniqueness to encourage our upcoming songwriters to "fit the mould". It seems to me there are a great deal of extremely talented musicians who fall between the cracks of commercial and alternative/b-net stations. Filling up the cracks would be a good idea...
4) What is your favourite place to be in NZ?
Hawea. Mountains and lakes give a good sense of perspective... But anywhere my lady is works just as well.
5) Who do you admire the most in NZ music at the moment?
Very hard to single one out; SJD for his dedication to the craft of songwriting; Warren Maxwell for the fact that his music never speaks a lie; Shayne Carter for for his enduring spark; Jakob for reaching the essence of what it is they do that nobody else does; Sam Scott for quality control.
About Paul McLaney
Thirteen schools by the age of 12, growing up in the shadows of North-East England’s sprawling petrochemical factories then transplanted worlds away to the idle wiles of Aotearoa’s northern reaches; music was the only constant in the life of Paul McLaney, singer, guitar-player. Yet his music has only furthered his travels, and his stylistic leanings have been anything but constant. From folky pop and thunderous rock’n’roll spanning the exploits of his band Gramsci to complete immersion in electronica of dance music collaborations and new excursion The Blush Response, McLaney’s life has been one of movement.
Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Paul McLaney
Today, his travels bring him to a bustling Wellington café, a mere whistle-stop. It’s barely enough time to dispense with the pleasantries before McLaney fixes his gaze and embarks on the story of his journey; the brush-strokes of his life that have led him to now, on the eve of his solo album 'Edin'.
“I’ve never revealed myself for the camera before,” he says, matter-of-factly, of the night before, when he was awake until daybreak shooting the video for his first single 'Don’t Want to Know'. “I’ve either been obscured or part of the background or not the subject. This is new to me.