I Dream of Vinyl

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Interview with Laurie Wright

Singer-songwriter Laurie Wright has experienced a lot of high and lows in his life; from playing the Glastonbury Festival when he was just 16 years old to becoming homeless and addicted to alcohol and drugs a few years later. Now 29, he is in recovery and releasing some great music. His latest single “After The End of The World” was released in August and is a rocking indie anthem, while the second track, “Need Your Love So Bad” is a bluesy number, showing Laurie’s range of songwriting and vocal ability. Check them out below

We caught up with Laurie to talk about this new single and to get his thoughts on where society can improve on how it deals with the issues he has had to face in the past. And pizza toppings of course!

Hi Laurie! How’s everything going right now?
Everything is going really well thanks! Booked up til Christmas and nearly all the gigs are selling out, so yeah it’s barmy in the best way possible.
What classic album cover is your current mood?
“Be Here Now” by Oasis. Swimming pools, fancy cars, nonsense everywhere, sunglasses. It’s the dream!
You recently released your new single “After The End of The World” which feels very relatable after the last 18 months. Tell us a bit about the writing and recording process
It was the first song I wrote during the first lockdown last year. I’d just met a girl before lockdown and we were FaceTiming every day during for a couple of months. The chorus poses the simple question ‘do you want to be my girl? Will you want to be mine after the end of the world?’

Your 2020 EP has a few different sounds. Who did listen to when you were growing up and how did they influence your own musical style? 
I was always obsessed by music. When I was 10 I loved blink 182 and hassled my folks to get me a drum kit. I then got in to hip hop and grime and my brother had decks that I used to have a go on not having a clue what I was doing. Then at 13 years old my brother got me 2 Libertines albums. It completely changed the game, I hassled my parents to get me a guitar and stopped wearing baggy jeans overnight. I wore my PE daps from school out in town because suddenly they were cool, and I taught myself guitar and the first 2 Libertines albums off by heart by ear, learning to sing and play along. I started busking to get money and attention from girls, which really worked. Then Arctic Monkeys turned up on the scene, and they felt like older brothers. Alex’s lyrics about riot vans, underage drinking, bigger boys stealing your girlfriends at school. I realised that I didn’t just love it, but I could actually DO it. I started writing songs immediately. That turned me back on to Oasis, who turned me on to The Stone Roses, and The Beatles. My love for Rodriguez came later when I watched ‘Searching For Sugar Man,’ my favourite film. And I think he’s my favourite songwriter. 
If you could only listen to one record, what would it be?
Coming from Reality – Rodriguez 
You’ve been very open about your struggles with addiction, homelessness and your mental health and it seems to be a growing problem in society. What do you think should be done to address and tackle these issues?
Drugs should be legalised. The war on drugs failed, if you’re not gunna criminalise alcohol (which is the biggest killer by far) then we need to legalise all drugs. Regulate them safely, and treat addiction compassionately. Homeless people aren’t criminals. Usually they’re addicts, who if we treated with compassion, we could help turn their life around. No one responds positively to negativity; you fight fire with fire and everyone loses. Portugal have done a great job, we should follow suit.
Supporting the Libertines must have been amazing last year – what was that like and what did you learn from them?
It was a cracking experience, although only via livestream. It was bizarre having my heroes singing my song back at me. I was star struck and, to be honest, didn’t say much when we were on zoom to Carl, Gary and John. Pete wasn’t on the zoom call but it was amazing to speak to the rest of them! 
You’ve been able to get out and play some live dates recently – how have they been?
The gigs have been incredible. Gloucester Guildhall was nearly sold out and it was a real taste of things to come. Chaos! So much love and energy in the room that night I couldn’t believe it.

What would go on your signature pizza and what would it be called?
Peppers, mushrooms, onion, garlic and extra mature cheddar 
Called: ‘Laurie’s Wright’
What are your plans for the rest of this year and heading into 2022?
Camden Dublin Castle October 29th! Tix selling fast to that and then Hackney Round Chapel December 21st, our Christmas gig to try and get our Christmas tune in to the charts. Aside from that, gigging about and busking full band, selling tickets and tryna grow the fan base/get noticed, which is going really well. 

You can get more information on tour dates, merch and Laurie’s other music at his website – https://www.lauriewright.co.uk/ and follow him on Instagram and Twitter

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