First of all: Here is the link to the podcast: Punks in Pubs Episode 4: Frank Turner
I considered sharing my thoughts on this podcast as a Twitter thread, because that would have been a bit easier to do this morning. But even last night when I listened to the podcast in bed, far away from my turned off phone in my living room – otherwise I WOULD have sent dozens of tweets about why I enjoyed this interview so much – I knew I had to turn on my computer this morning anyway to put “Bat Out Of Hell” back on my iPod to listen to it, so I thought, I should use my own space to share my thoughts and make it a bit easier to read. Woah, was that really just one sentence? Sorry! [And yes, I also thought about my PeakStreak challenge to write 1000 words each day and how I skipped yesterday and commited to writing 2000 today instead. These are already over 800 of them. Go Me!]
Fact is: I actually am a bit bothered by some people doing long threads on Twitter to tell a story or make a point. I created the [>140] category here for that reason: to keep myself from doing it and to thus not piss my followers off. So here I go.
With every new interview – and when album #7 is out next spring, there will be lots again – I initially think I probably won’t learn anything new about Frank, because let’s face it: I’ve listened to / watched a lot of interviews and such with him / about him in the past 4+ years of following his career. And yes, I’m familiar with some anecdotes and statements, but if it’s a good interviewer and not just a generic “promote new album” kind of thing, there’s always interesting (new) things to learn.
So here are some random thoughts about this latest one in no particular order:
- To me it’s always a really lovely and rewarding experience to listen to Frank talk about stuff. I’m a fan, so Duh! of course. But what I’m saying is: he literally is a joy to listen to. He’s articulate and talkative, especially if it’s about stuff he cares about: music, his work and such. He’s a good narrator when it comes to anecdotes or just telling stories and explaining things.
- It’s an equally lovely experience to hear how much he loves doing what he is doing: Writing and performing. He’s enthusiastic about it and I loved his statement that as an artist promotiong your own work you better well should be! Especially if people come and pay good money to see you on stage.
- He tried writing for other artists at some point, but besides collaborations with (good) friends he realized he couldn’t do it. He can’t write a generic pop/rock whatever song if it’s not about something he feels worth writing about. And than he often enough wanted to use the song for himself.
- I love his attitude about music snobbery: that there shouldn’t be any. Any artists who can make a living with making music for a target audience should be applauded. And not every music can be for everyone. [Like I can’t stand Mongol Horde, but I still love my friends who enjoy their music g*]
- I definitely also loved the slightly offhand “German fans are loyal” statement :-)
- Frank is such a dork. And I mean that in the nicest way possible. I LOVE that about him. This thought was prompted by his story how as teenagers his friends and him cross-referenced “Thank You Lists” in punk albums they’ve bought. I might not have done *that* when I had been a teenager and fan of bands / TV stars, but other things I did were probably equally dorky.
- I haven’t listened to enough different music in my life yet. I should remedy that some point soon. I have that thought whenever Frank mentions old bands or current ones who have influenced him. Not because I want to analyse why he was influenced by that, but because I just want to find out if I might enjoy that music too. The list just got longer with this interview.
- Frank can be a real jokester. That’s obvious on stage sometimes, but also in stories like “What Is MeatLoaf Doing Right Now”. I’m glad I had already been around and following Frank on Twitter when Meat Loaf actually did reply to that.
- I also had a good laugh about his choice of names for various pets, if he had them. A lot of thought seem to have gone into that, which I feel confirms my statements about the jokester and the dork. I loved it.
All in all: Very enjoyable wonderful 60 minutes to listen to. Thank you Liam from Punks in Pubs and Frank for agreeing to do this one.