Gimme Your Answers 2: An Interview w/ Tom Odell

Tom OdellOn September 25th, on a sunny park bench in Toronto, Tom Odell met with us to discuss touring, his current album, and possible thoughts for another.

AMBY: You’ve been playing a ton of festivals this year, and recently played the iTunes Festival and BESTIVAL. So what have been some of the highlights?

Tom Odell: Probably the two you just mentioned actually. BESTIVAL was insane. It was the biggest crowd I ever played to.

AMBY: How many people were there?

Tom Odell: About 30, 000 people, or maybe 20, 000, but there were a lot of people. It was quite terrifying.

AMBY: I guess it’s nice to know that that many people will want to come out and see you.

Tom Odell: Yeah, I mean I guess festivals are always different, but it was a good show. Glastonbury was a great weekend for us as well because it was the week my album came out and I found out it went to number one a half hour before we went on stage.

AMBY: So, you recently announced some new UK shows, including one at Brixton Academy. What are you most looking forward to?

Tom Odell: I’m looking forward to that tour, the whole thing. I don’t know which one I’m looking forward to the most. I’ve seen some amazing shows at Brixton Academy. So it’s pretty cool to be playing there.

AMBY: What are the best and worst parts of being on tour?

Tom Odell: I love being able to play every night. I genuinely didn’t believe there was a job where you’d get to play a gig every night so it’s really great it does exist.

AMBY: There must have been some really great gigs. Where’s your favourite place in the world to play?

Tom Odell: Probably New York. Every time we’ve played there it’s just been an amazing show. We actually played an amazing show in Montreal last night. I was really impressed by that place. There’s something about that city. I found it very exciting to be there.

AMBY: When AMBY last spoke with you, back in May, you were about to release your album, Long Way Down. Now it’s been released and it seems that a lot of people have been really liking it. How does that make you feel?

Tom Odell: It’s nice, it’s nice to be able to tour but I’m really excited to be making another one.

AMBY: What are your thoughts on the record now that it’s all done? Are there any things you’d think you’d change?

Tom Odell: Yeah, and there always will be. I think, as an artist, it’s always important to log something, in a way, and move on. As a songwriter it’s very important. At one point when I was writing song for this album is that you can get so stuck, you know, on a song, and it’s very important to just finish it and move on.

AMBY: Do you have any favourite songs off the album?

Tom Odell: I think once you put songs on an album they’re not longer like songs they’re like your children, and you can never pick one over another.

AMBY: No favourites.

Tom Odell: [laughs] I hate them all equally.

AMBY: The record has some really beautiful songs, where do you usually get your song writing inspiration?

Tom Odell: From all sorts of things, I think. I read a lot. The thing with Long Way Down is that it’s really inspired by my life. It’s a bit self-absorbed, I guess, in that way. But a lot of it is really about what is going on with me. It’s quite autobiographical.

AMBY: So what’s next, as far as recording?

Tom Odell: I don’t know. I’m trying to see if I can get some time in December. We’re on a quite big tour at the moment. This tour carries on until December, we do Europe and the UK when we get back. I do quite enjoy touring, it’s quite different, but it’s good fun. We’ve been doing it for quite a while now too.

AMBY: How long?

Tom Odell: Well, kind of on and off since November of last year.

AMBY: That’s exhausting. Do you get homesick?

Tom Odell: I don’t, actually. Which is slightly concerning I find. The rest of the guys in my band get really homesick and I don’t, kind of makes me seem like a terrible person I know.

AMBY: It must be quite the whirlwind experience; you’re just wrapped up in it. There must be some great things; what’s the best part of being Tom Odell?

Tom Odell: [laughs] Scraping the barrel here. No, I’m very interested, in everything. I’m very interested in other people, and I don’t want that to stop. I’m very intrigued with the world and life and everyone else, and I think that’s very important. I don’t like people that I meet that aren’t interested. You know, sometimes you meet people who are very wrapped up in their lives. And I think it’s something that some people lose as they release more albums, they’re less interested, and I think they’re songwriting is no longer of any value.

AMBY: Well, for all your fans out there, let’s hope you never stop being interested. Thanks Tom.

Tom Odell: Thanks.

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Emily Fox | @foxyfoxe

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