Tuesday, February 01, 2011
Seven questions... with Drew Miller aka The Northern Hemisphere
Drew Miller aka The Northern Hemisphere is a interesting chap who I got speaking with on Twitter after downloading his album Everest a wee while back. I find his music compelling and his output inspiring.
I also appreciate his willingness to collaborate. I had the pleasure of working with Adam Howie on the artwork for Drew's recent album Quiet Songs for a Loud Generation. Drew was very receptive to the ideas communicated in the artwork and very grateful too... which, for someone like me, is greatly appreciated!
I caught up with him recently via email and asked him my seven questions...
1) Who are you and what do you do?
Hello! My name is Drew Miller and I'm a full time student as well as a musician in my spare time. I work under the alias The Northern Hemisphere. I've had at least 8 or 9 project name changes in the past but this seemed to fit with what I'm aiming to produce.
A little secret: I write, record and produce everything on my own using just Garageband on my wonderful baby. (my macbook pro, in case you're wondering.)! :-D
I play several instruments including the guitar, piano, mandolin and the alto saxophone.
2) What are you working on at the moment?
I am always multi-tasking whether it be 2 in the afternoon or 2 in the morning. I barely get enough sleep due to insomnia to figure those things out. Just look at my eyelids in my Facebook pictures haha.
As far as music is concerned, I'm already starting work on my 2012 albums. Not sure what the concept is yet. However, I can tell you, to picture something similar to Sigur Ros' record entitled " ( ) ".
3) Who inspires you?
- Name an artist who has inspired you.
I'd have to say either Jack White (of the White Stripes) or Andrew Bird. Both of them are in completely different genres of music. I've always admired them because they aim to create such sonic landscapes of sound, all the while staying within the boundaries of rock, punk, folk and or electronica. You name it, they got it all, and as such they produce something new each time.
Oh oh oh... and Imogen Heap. She's simply awesome! If it weren’t for her album Speak for Yourself I wouldn’t be creating electronica. It's practically mind-blowing.
Albums to check out:
* Elephant by The White Stripes
* Noble Beast by Andrew Bird
* Speak for Yourself by Imogen Heap
- Name place that has inspired you.
I've always been inspired by iceland of all things, as well as the universe (planets, comets etc). Both of which have such inspiring boundless opportunities within themselves that it's practically unfathomable. Iceland is also the only play where you can see Ice & Fire mingle together on the same piece of earth at the same time.
It's been a dream of mine to experience such extremes working together in synchronicity.
- Name some "thing" that has inspired you.
hmm, all things really. Without everything else in the world there wouldn't really be inspiration to draw from.
4) What drives you to do what you do?
What drives me? That's a wonderful question. I'm not quite sure to be perfectly honest. I just go with my gut feeling usually. If i feel that the songs I write don't help me as well as others to be put at ease, I'm not doing my job.
If that's an awkward answer another answer would have to be the thought of no boundaries within music. I know there are rules and such, but as an artist; rules should be broken. I know you should pay attention to them but I don't think i'd thrive without breaking the boundaries of music theory or music composition in general. I in the end just hit record and I go from there. If it fits with what i'm aiming for I'll put it up for download and or critique.
Hopefully that wasn't too long of a response, if you'd like the abridged version, have your people talk to mine and we'll sort things out. hehe :o)
5) What values do you wish your creativity to express?
I want to express a sense of relaxation, meditation, calm, and or shoe-gaze like presence to the music i've written. If you don't feel at ease while listening to my music, I'm not doing my job.
Whenever I hit record, after that I spend at least 4 or 5 days, even sometimes 2 weeks. Trying to get everything to sound the way it should in my own eyes. This is why I'd hate to be on a record label. Too much too worry about, in my humble opinion. Plus, If I want a song to sound like a reggae track, that's what i'll spend months trying to pursue and perfect. That's just an example of how my brain works during the recording and writing process.
6) What role does community play in what you do?
Hmm, I'd have to say friendship and life-long connections are what i'm striving for with this current music project. I never thought i'd get so much praise since I started this project last july. I just hope to keep improving and making an impact on society. Even if it means receiving nothing in return.
Little things are what keep me going throughout life.
7) What is next for what you do?
Only time will tell to be quiet honest. As far as life in general, I'll be finishing up my general studies degree this may, my first college associates degree! Woop, woop! After I hope to transfer to another local college, to start on my Music Engineering bachelors degree. Thank you for taking the time to listen to my thoughts behind what I enjoy doing best.
Drew of the Northern Hemisphere
Thanks Drew... here's his links. Take the time to check out him music... I recommend it.