Hi Mobley, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?
I’m doing pretty well. Thanks for having me.
Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Solo”?
I’m always hesitant to talk too much about my intentions because I think the meaning that people find and make for themselves is often so much more interesting. I’ll just say that there were two ideas central to my understanding of the concept. First, that there are innumerable forces acting on us in modern life that can make us feel isolated. Whether we respond with defiance or resignation, it seems that more people are experiencing some degree of loneliness most of the time. Second, that no one ever really does anything alone. Anything we ever accomplish is built from pieces left for us by other people, often at considerable cost.
Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?
At the time of writing, various events converged to make me feel a profound aloneness, including transitioning from operating within a band to a becoming a solo artist (my new EP, Some Other Country, is my first solo release). With the song, I wanted to point to the very real feelings of isolation and loneliness that too many of us live with, but I also wanted to push past that to the point of caricature to acknowledge that virtually no one really does anything “solo”.
Who come up with the cool concept?
I came up with both the song and video concepts and, along with my co-director Katherine Wilkinson, choreographed everything except the background dancers.
How was the film experience? Was it stressful as shown in the video?
It actually came together quite well. I think it was probably even more stressful than it looks, but I had a great team around to help me execute my vision. Honestly, I’m amazed that we were able to pull it off. They deserve a ton of credit.
The single comes off your new EP Some Other Country – what’s the story behind the title?
The title references the theme of most songs on the record: most use a romantic relationship as a metaphor through which to explore social issues like race-making, policing, citizenship, and belonging.
How was the recording and writing process?
Intense and lonely, but very rewarding in the end. I’ve been getting great responses and I’m really pleased with how it came together.
Having travelled and lived pretty much around the world – how has this influenced your music?
I think that having access to different frameworks and perspectives as you move through the world really changes you. Seeing the ways that people in different places interact with and think about things makes you more aware of the aspects of your worldview that you take as fixed or granted (even if they aren’t). My hope would be that all of that moving about has made me more open and nuanced in the way I see the world and, consequently, a better artist.
Where did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?
Everywhere. I take a pretty holistic view of influences and inspiration, so I’d say I drew inspiration from everywhere.
How has the road been treating you so far?
The road is always tough, but it’s a thrill to be introducing songs to new audiences and seeing how people respond, and watching things that have existed only in my mind leap into the real world.