5 minutes with… Sonny
The rising pop artist from South Shields discusses his new single ‘Sweet Dreams’ and his forthcoming acoustic EP ‘Beech Road’
Sonny began honing his musical skills aged 14, gigging around local spots in his native Newcastle. Now, aged 19, he has developed into an effortlessly confident performer who’s already played to thousands of fans across the UK. Stylistically, Sonny exudes a classic 50s/60s aesthetic which compliments a rich and soulful voice that sounds mature beyond his teen years. It’s this classic vocal style which lends his pop music such a timeless feel.
Sonny is currently gearing up for the release of his Beech Road EP, an all-acoustic affair which follows on from previous collections Hopeless Romance and Northern Nights. New single Sweet Dreams once again shines a light on his gorgeous vocal tone.
We thought now would be a great time to catch up with the South Shields-born songwriter to discuss his latest musical venture…
Your new single is especially emotive. Was that always the goal when you began writing it?
“I definitely set out for Sweet Dreams to be an emotional song. I wanted there to be an element of the unknown of what the song is actually about and let people relate to it in their own way. I write my songs from personal experience so there are always emotions attached.”
Where did the inspiration for Sweet Dreams come from?
“Inspiration comes from so many different places. But this particular song came from me having a dream about someone who became a stranger to me. And it was nice to see them again, even if it was in a dream.”
What was the overall writing experience like on this one?
“I originally started out writing a completely different song and was struggling. Then I changed the chords and strumming pattern on my guitar to give it a more country vibe and the song just spilled out of me straight away.”
Who did you work with on the record?
“I wrote the song on my own in my bedroom. Then brought it to my production team who have a studio in their garden (where I record all my songs). And put the guitar and vocals down.”
What’s an average studio day like for you?
“My voice is usually terrible on a morning! So I usually go for a game of tennis and thrash my manager. Then go home, get showered and have breakfast. I then start at about midday. Either record vocals, write a song, have a laugh and drink loads of tea. A lot of time when writing I’ll just be on the sofa and not even in the studio.”
The new single is the latest from your upcoming EP. What vibe can listeners expect from the whole project?
“In this EP I’ve stripped my songs right down and tried to keep it close to how I started this journey. Just me and my guitar.”
Is there one song in particular off the EP that you’re most excited about sharing?
“The song I’m probably most excited about is called Let Love. Because it’s literally a true version of events that happened in my life, a conversation with my mam. Every time I listen to it, it makes me feel so excited.”
What’s the overall message you are looking to convey through the tracks?
“The overall message of this EP is just my journey, my stamp in time, what I’m feeling right now. I try not to overthink things and let things be as natural as possible. This EP is a stripped version of what I’m feeling.”
What are your day-to-day writing sessions like?
“A lot of this EP was written at my house in South Shields. Sometimes I’d tweak the songs with my production team. Done a few sessions with new people, which was a great experience.”
Along with the new single and EP, what else can fans expect from you this year?
“My fans can expect more shows! Me and my band have got some cool stuff planned this year. I’m always writing new music and I’m hoping to work towards an album after this EP.”
Lastly, do you have a message for your fan base?
“I just want to say thank you to my fans for being so supportive throughout this journey. I’m so excited for what’s to come in the future.”
Interview: Laura Klonowski
Sonny has just released his new single Let Love today, which you can listen to below. To find out more, head to facebook.com/nowthisissonny