INTERVIEW: HERDD

Hi Frankie, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

Thanks so much for having me guys! Honestly, I’ve never been better.

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Dies Mei”?

‘Dies Mei’ is all about learning to love the best and worst bits of who you are and then standing up proudly and saying this is me, this is my time and I’m not going anywhere. On a personal level ‘Dies Mei’ is not only a celebration of how far I’ve come, past addiction and suicidal depression, but it also recognizes how far I’ve still got to go.

Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?

There was a point in my life when I’d lost all hope. Back then I was struggling with alcohol addiction, a generalized anxiety condition and deep depression. At the time I was touring with an old music project, living the rock ’n’ roll lifestyle and even shows to crowds of 1400 people couldn’t turn around my declining mental health. Soon after I had two suicide attempts and I left the music industry for a while. During that time I continued writing music for myself, but instead of being out there with my music I just focused on healing. It took me quite a few years, but I managed to turn things around and eventually I was ready to come back and that’s when HERDD was born. In ‘Dies Mei’s chorus I sing ‘My heart is on the road, but there’s demons here at home and I promise you that I will do better’. The song is also a promise to myself that I will do better and be better moving forwards.

Any plans to release a video for the single?

We went all out with our production of the video for my last single ‘I Got You’ and it helped introduce HERDD to the world, it was even premiered in Billboard which was an incredible moment. This time round though, we’ll only be releasing a lyric video. As a self-funded independent artist with limited resources, my goal for 2020 is to focus on releasing more music.

How was the recording and writing process?

The writing process for ‘Dies Mei’ in its initial form was very speedy. Songwriting feels so simple when I’m inspired, It just all falls into place. After that initial burst of creativity, I took some time to reform the idea and produced a rudimentary demo to show prospective producers. I may be good at forming ideas, structure and songwriting but I am by no means a solid producer. With the idea and demo formed I set out to find the right producer to take it to the next level. That’s when I reached out to Rob Wells. I showed him ‘Dies Mei’ and he said he believed in it! And the rest is history.

What was it like to work with Rob Wells and how did that relationship develop?

I mean, Rob is an incredible producer off the bat. He has a handful of platinum records to his name and has worked with the likes of Ariana Grande and Adam Lambert. I was totally thrilled when he said he liked ‘Dies Mei’ and that he was keen to jump on the project with me. He’d seen the video for ‘I Got You’, understood my drive and had some ideas about how to elevate my art.

I’ll always remember our first session because we didn’t even discuss the song. We totally clicked on a personal level and just ended up talking about music, life and I have to say I was even crying at points. Not that that’s abnormal, but it’s a good sign of how quickly we connected. Honestly, we’re good friends now and I feel like I’ve won some sort of producer lottery!

How much did he get to influence the song?

What’s cool about working with Rob is he’s not shy to challenge you to rethink your own song. In fact, without Rob’s input on a creative level it’s unlikely the song would have had it’s punchy rap verses. It was about halfway through the process when Rob just dropped in the idea of rap for the verses, instead of the sung ones I’d initially written, and I went home that night and just felt it. The lyrics came totally naturally. The next session we were both super excited about these unexpected hard-hitting rap verses.

What made you want to touch on these rather dark themes?

Personally, I don’t shy away from shedding light on the darker side of life. Admittedly, I have songs in the works that have a far more uplifting concept or theme, but it felt right for ‘Dies’ Mei’ to exist at this point in my journey. It almost felt like a purging of all the darkness I’d experienced in music to date. A shedding of the misery and a stepping out as something new. That’s why the track is called ‘Dies Mei’ which translates from Latin to English as ‘My Time’.

Does the new single mean we can expect any new material – how’s that coming along?

Absolutely! I’ll be back in the studio with Rob in the next few weeks and you can expect a few new singles to drop in 2020!

Any tentative release date or title in mind?

At this point there are no fixed dates, but you can expect more HERDD before summer!

Any plans to hit the road?

As I don’t have much HERDD music out there yet it’s not likely I’ll be touring in 2020. But I used to love playing the festival circuit and I can’t see myself being able to resist it in the summer of 2021!

What else is happening next in HERDD’s world?

2020 is going to be a big year. New music, new collaborations with the fashion industry and some projects still under wraps that I find it really hard not to talk about! All I can say is watch this space and if you feel it, come join the HERDD.

LISTEN HERE

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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