Yorkshire Times
Weekend Edition
Graham Clark
Music Features Writer
12:00 AM 14th May 2024

Newton Faulkner In Conversation

Newton Faulkner
Newton Faulkner
Newton Faulkner consistently adapts to a constantly changing music landscape. He has transitioned from the remarkable success of his debut album Hand Built By Robots' to the soaring success of Write It On Your Skin; from Studio Zoo, the first album to live stream online during recording and release in just five weeks, to the opulent Human Love and numerous other albums throughout his remarkable 15-year career.

He’s now taking this moment to record his next collection of songs. This time it was a little more production heavy, but still full of powerful vocals and his signature guitar sound weaving through the mix. In the past, Newton has often found himself in his home studio working away solo, but not for this next record or, in fact, this tour. Newton's next phase is full of collaboration, which you can feel in the music to come.

Seeing these songs come to life on stage is going to be nothing short of joyous.

How are you today?

Fine, thank you. I am looking forward to the tour and performing in front of a live audience.

Is this tour different from your previous ones?

On the last tour, I had a full band on stage with me, whereas the new tour is going to be just myself. I never want to lose sight of where I came from, and this new tour reflects that. When I am in the recording studio, there are no rules, unlike on tour, though I do try to keep the arrangements of my songs intact. For instance, if I play a song such as Killing Time, whatever version I decide to play of the song, the reaction from the fans is always favourable. A lot of my fans are guitarists themselves, and many of them meet up with me at gigs for a chat.

Newton Faulkner
Newton Faulkner
Is this why you've decided to host the guitar workshops on tour?

Absolutely! The size of the venues I am playing on the Feels Like Home 2 tour lends itself to the guitar workshops, which so far have been very educational, not just for the fans but for me as well. For instance, I learn things about my own guitar playing. I tend to play pieces that, to me, are not too complicated, as I am doing them all the time and do not realize how complex they are—until the fans remind me at the workshops.

Will there be a new album coming out this year?

I have written a batch of new songs, though the challenge for me is trying to make them sound different from what I have done before. I tend to find that when I write a new track, it either resonates and clicks or does not.

Do you ever experience writer's block?

Lyrically, yes; musically, no.

What challenges have you had to deal with over the years?
The music industry has changed a lot since I first started. For new artists, it is very hard for them to make a living out of just recording; you must perform and play concerts to try and make a living from your music. I know from my own experience that I seem to be working as hard as ever but have less to show for it. I am sure that this is true in other industries too. My current tour is visiting smaller venues, as I feel it is important to support these places as they are at the grassroots of the music business and are breeding grounds for new talent.

Newton Faulkner plays the following northern dates:

Wednesday, May 22nd, Southport, The Atkinson
Wednesday, May 29th, Grimsby-Docks Academy
Thursday, May 30: Harrogate Theatre
Saturday, June 1st, Holmfirth Picturedrome