Bingham Willoughby: News
Press Release: 5 New Videos Released in March - February 28, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - FEBRUARY 28, 2011
BINGHAM WILLOUGHBY TO RELEASE FIVE NEW MUSIC VIDEOS IN MARCH
LOS ANGELES - Introspective, Ontario-based songwriter Bingham Willoughby will be releasing five new music videos for songs from his new album, Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow. Beginning March 3, a new video will be released every Thursday via Bing's YouTube Channel, in the following order: "Amber (Like The Flame)," "My Swan Song," "The North Light," "It Happened By Chance," and "When You're Up, You're Up."
Bing explains the genesis of his creative process: "My songs often begin with daydreaming. I often visualize a scene, as I'm writing the lyrics. We're trying to create little daydreams for each song. I think we've succeeded."
The videos were shot utilizing stop motion animation and time-lapse techniques. These imagined vignettes, are compiled of images that allude to a deeper meaning and further emphasize the dream-like quality.
A cinematic lyricist, Bing has been boldly referred to as "Belle & Sebastian meets Dylan." Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow is his debut release on Hurry Up Comfort Records. The self-produced album was a homespun affair, from the writing to the recording to the new video collection; Bing has placed his personal stamp all over it.
Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow is available now on iTunes as well as the official Bingham Willoughby website.
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Such Cool Stuff interview - February 27, 2011
How do you describe your music to people?
When people ask me to describe my music, I usually just say that I'm a solo, acoustic, singer/songwriter. My music is acoustic based and incorporates some slightly retro, but also what I feel are, contemporary sensibilities. I don't spend a lot of time defining it for myself. I get a lot of comments about its “unique” style. I made an acoustic album, the way I felt it should sound. I wasn't thinking about genre or what musical designation it should have. Thankfully, I've had a very positive response, so many of my creative decisions have been validated. At the time, it felt like I was taking a chance, but it seemed important to keep a few of my idiosyncrasies intact. As for the all important “genre thing” that's happening now, I guess I'm straddling a few genres, and I actually like it that way! I've been told by people, that I remind them of artists as wide ranging as Belle & Sebastian, Bob Dylan, The Smiths, Lloyd Cole and Lou Reed. Someone even told me that I reminded them of early Joni Mitchell. I don't spend a lot of time figuring out who I sound like, as people are happy to share their opinion and I've been surprised more than once. I get a kick out of it. Lyrically, I try to tell stories that make you feel like you've dropped in, in the middle of a moment. I'm happiest when I feel I've been able to evoke a moment or an impression, as if you've been privy to a stray piece of conversation.
Tell me about how you originally got into your craft, Bing.
I can't remember precisely why I wanted to play an instrument, but there was something about the guitar that appealed to me then, and still does now. This is mildly deconstructionist, but I began writing songs because I wasn't great at figuring out other people's tunes. So as a young player, with limited abilities, I took a slight short cut and just tried doing it myself. I assure you, it wasn't a grand scheme. I remember it as being rather light hearted. It sort of became a part of my daily guitar practice. Needless to say, I've spent a great deal of time exploring the song writing process, since then. I'm still exploring.
What is your favorite thing to do in the whole wide world?
I possess varied interests so I've decided to narrow it down and share with you, one of my favorite things in the musical domain. It is a decidedly simple pleasure—and one that is a little slanted towards guitar players and their rituals. In a much repeated and therefore practiced show of industry, a brand new set of strings has been installed. After a requisite amount of adjustment and tuning, the moment is at hand. You play that first chord on those pristine strings. The acoustic chimes out so crisply and cleanly—to my ear, few things sound better. The moment destined to be short lived, because that "fresh string sound" lasts for a matter of minutes. In those minutes, you can remember when you did the exact same thing as a kid, and there's a chance to experience the exact same feeling you had. A sonic connection—your past, your present. Whatever is going on—paused—and you're right there. Mercifully, it's easy to recreate. I get a big kick out of it. Still.
What is your biggest challenge when it comes to running your business?
I think the biggest challenge for me (and all independent musicians) is getting your music heard. With the way the business is changing, the biggest challenge for musicians, is also the most exciting and interesting challenge. Get online; sign up with twitter, Facebook, ReverbNation, Soundcloud and itunes—and you're on an equal playing field with everyone else marketing their music online. And while you're at it, I guarantee that you'll meet a lot of really great people and hear more amazing music, than you could have ever imagined.
When you were a kid, what did you think you were going to be when you grew up?
Like most children, I anticipated a future radically further advanced technologically, than where we've ended up, thus far. When I was a kid, I imagined that flying cars, laser beams and food in pill form, would be common place! Being a musician is probably the equivalent, somehow, of whatever task I would have performed—had the future turned out the way I had envisioned it. Secret Space Agent. Laser Pilot. Mayor of Cloud City. I've come to view making music as an amalgam of all my future jobs, distilled into the present. Accompanying the distillation, there's another layer of time appropriate translation, that is the primary delivery method of the process. I thought I'd end up doing something like this. (Dramatic pause) Yes—I thought I'd end up being a musician.
In what way has your community impacted your development as a musician?
I'm answering this question in two parts. First of all, I'm not entirely sure my locale has much influence on my music, because I listen to music from all over the place. However, an argument could also be made that my environment helped shape my song writing sensibility. I'm sure some of those long Canadian winters have made their way into the music—sonically. Snowy days, are great days for practicing guitar too. That question might be in the process of being answered, as I'm definitely going to be exploring some winter imagery for some of the songs I'm planning videos for. “The North Light,” is a winter song, for one. Second of all, my musical community impacted my recording—through their absence. I don't mean to be dramatic, but when I finally got down to recording what would become "Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow," I decided I wanted to do it myself. I wanted to make a singular statement of where I was (musically) at the time, and it seemed the only thing that ended up making sense, was doing it 100% solo. I played all the instruments and produced and engineered it myself. For good or for bad, I needed to feel that I was responsible for every aspect. I didn't want to be second guessing things and when the dust settled, I just wanted to be able to say “I wanted this song to sound like this”. This is not to say that I don't value collaborations or working with others—just that in this situation, and for these songs I wanted to go it alone. It was the right decision for these songs.
What other artists out there do you love?
Like all musicians, I'm also a huge fan of music. The volume of music I've been influenced by, is simply too long a list to share. My main influences might be somewhat surprising. When I was recording "Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow," I was listening to a lot of classic American folk—primarily Pete Seeger. I wasn't, however, trying to recreate that sound, but more borrowing from that energy/sensibility. I'm a fancier of lyrics, so I tend to seek out those types of artists that have lyrics that appeal to me. I am greatly influenced by Lloyd Cole, Lou Reed and The Smiths (to name a few). I've gone through periods of listening to the Standards, and I am a fan of Rockabilly, Jazz and Punk. I've always got an ear open to catch that new phrase or melody that fascinates me. Since releasing this record I've had the opportunity to be introduced to the work of many musicians, who I've connected with online. I've been blown away by the number of great songs that people from all over the world are producing. It's truly a great time for music. If you can produce your own music, the options for releasing it to the listening public are limitless. I'm not entirely sure what phase of the "musical revolution" we're in now, but there's a lot of amazing independent artists out there, making compelling music.
What does your future hold?
As one truly never can tell what the future will bring, I tend to concern myself with shorter term situations. Currently, I'm booking some shows to support the release of "Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow." I am really looking forward to performing these songs for people. When the work for this record is quieting, I plan to make a second album. That is in the "notion" stage, at the moment. New songs have a habit of creeping up, so sometimes it's best to let them plan their own arrivals. That's one of the best things about making music, you can feel like you're being surprised on a regular basis.
Close to Nowhere - December 20, 2010
Here's what he had say:
"Today I’m shifting focus to an international artist called Bing Willoughby. He’s a fantastic new artist from Canada who’s music can be likened to The Smiths or Neil Young, or any of the great folk performers and song-writers you can imagine – yet somehow he doesn’t sound like anything you’ve heard before. A truly original artist with an eclectic style and feel, who can weave stories with the finest detail and bring you on some very beautiful sound scapes. I feature two of his songs this week, but will be giving his new album “Maybe not today, maybe tomorrow” a good playing through out next year."
-Peter Renzullo, host of "Close to Nowhere" on rechargedradio.com
Radio Interview - November 17, 2010
Eat Sleep Breathe Music write up - September 17, 2010
Take a road trip with Bingham Willoughby
If you’re wondering, no a Bingham Willoughby is not a kind of animal that hangs in a tree in Australia or something. He is actually a singer/songwriter and part Lou Reed.
Bingham’s latest album is Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow and is the kind of album that is made for long road trips when you’re driving alone through the desert or along the coast or some other expansive doldrums of your choice.
These arent’ traditional pop songs in any way. Bingham ignores most traditional structures and the songs just sort of melt together one song smeared into the next with melodies that are all in the same family. This is moody pensive music with a Velvet Underground twinkle and maybe some Belle and Sebastian.
And funny that this album is made for journey’s because according to Bing (yea, I’ll use nicknames if I want) the album was like a journey. But how could it not be? When you undertake the whole recording and writing process alone, like Bing did, it’s bound to feel like quite a pilgrimage.
At the end of the day, that’s what this album is. It’s a roaming and exploring of sorts, with the explorer giving insight into the whole thing. A conversation if you will that reveals something deep and secretive.
Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow: featured video - September 9, 2010
"Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow" is one of the featured videos on the Not Just French Music's main page. Check it out: http://frenchmusic.ning.com/
Flip Side to Music's studio now playing: - September 2, 2010
Flip Side to Music feature - September 2, 2010
Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow, evokes memories of musical sounds from the past, from the warm, enveloping bass guitar to the otherworldly, bell-like tones of the Rhodes piano. When combined, with the sound of his finger style acoustic, the production echoes a lot of great retro touchstones, while reworking them all into what can only be described as a modern sensibility. When all this is fused to Bingham’s, at times, literate, lyrical preoccupations, the end result provides the listener with a thought-provoking and evocative musical experience. Some have equated listening to Bing’s songs, as feeling like they are being told secrets. The secret being told is, that there is music and poetry dwelling, in our everyday experience.
“I strive in my lyric writing, to achieve a ‘conversational’ tone, because I think what’s valuable and meaningful, comes from what happens between people in these; their unguarded moments. I think of my songs as a dialogue between myself and the listener, I’m trying to present some of my unguarded moments and communicate through them. I place the utmost value in what the listener interprets the songs to mean. I don’t feel that anything poetic, ever has an absolute concrete meaning. I really feel that people’s impressions can, and often will–alter over time, and if something resonates–it will transform. I want the listener to arrive at their own conclusions, and I place the greatest value on what people evoke for themselves. I get a thrill from finding out what people take from my songs. At times I’ve been so surprised and delighted at what someone has taken from a song it transforms me a little. I’m just telling some stories. Not every story needs a ending.”
For more information, please visit Bing’s site at:
You can check out Bing’s video playing at our studio at:
Musicgoat.com interview - August 19, 2010
Musician Interview: Bingham Willoughby, channeling his influences with his looks and within his music.
perceives more than mere mortals
His songs freeze beauty
Introducing Rock Poet: Bingham Willoughby
Your new album is called Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow, are you a big procrastinator or is there another significance to the title?
On one level, you could say that there is a slight essence of procrastination, in the title. But my intentions, speak to more of an anticipatory feeling–as if you might say, “maybe not today, maybe tomorrow…but soon.” I wanted the title to evoke an impression, more akin to having overheard a snippet of conversation, versus some grand mission statement. And on a personal note, I think I’ll answer the question of being a procrastinator, a little later on…
You have a new video out for your song “What If You’d Chosen Me” what is the significance behind all of the nature shots?
The concept for the video was to explore the interaction between the idea of traveling and the various surroundings you’ll encounter. The traveler responds to these situations, and yet what he sees remains unchanged. The viewer is the traveler. The various natural and urban backdrops are silent witnesses. The notion of looking through moss covered branches, points to a starting point for reflection. The traveler is then confronted with images of the guitar scuttling across the forest floor, a snare filling with sky, and Spanish moss springing to life to try on a Da Vinci shirt. The images from nature; the swaying flowers and trees all asking, “What If You’d Chosen Me?” Humans are moving and nature is moving; these images reflect the song’s sentiments: “I don’t know if I’ll ever have the strength to plan again. Say what you have to, you can’t stop this from happening.” We’re asking the questions and searching for answers–in moody, mysterious nature.
If someone were to play Bingham Willoughby in a movie, who, dead or alive, would you want that actor to be?
It might sound like a funny choice, but Orson Welles. Not just because, I like his acting, but mostly because I credit him with performing one of the most bizarre musical numbers, ever committed to film (in Citizen Kane). In fact, some day I’d love to do a shot by shot remake of it, for one of my songs. If I was forced to choose a living actor, I’d have to say Philip Seymour Hoffman (currying favor, with the interviewer).
Your music sounds very reminiscent of Lou Reed, is he an influence of yours? Who are your other influences?
I definitely feel indebtedness to Lou Reed and The Velvet Underground, and certainly, some of the ways I approach song writing are heavily influenced, by what I perceive to be some of their methods. In particular, I’ve always been a huge fan of Reed’s ability to manifest, not only evocative images, but also real emotional urgency. Any writer, who wants to try and speak “of the moment,” owes Lou a debt. In terms of playing, I think any person who utilizes, at times, a reductive approach when playing and ranging, also owes a debt to The Velvet underground.
I have a lot of other influences. Just a few, off the top, would be: The Smiths (Johnny Marr), Lloyd Cole and Neil Young. Even Rockabilly greats, like Eddie Cochran are an influence. When it comes to lyrics, I’m drawn to that turn of phrase that resonates. In my own listening it’s something I always look for, and I’ve discovered it in many varied sources, from Cole Porter to The Shins. I’m always looking out for something that entices me.
This album was truly a solo project, from the music, the recording, and the lyrics; what are the best and worst parts of recording an album alone?
The best part about recording alone might in some ways be the worst part as well. If you have an idea, you can implement it, without consultation, somewhat streamlining the process. However, you also can’t benefit from several great ideas being offered at once, and then crystallizing into one grand idea. That is one of the huge benefits of a group process. The solitary approach fit perfectly, for the way I was feeling about this group of songs. Additionally, from a musician’s standpoint and recording standpoint, there are times when you are actively seeking this form of challenge. You’re trying to make the correct decisions that are going to be right for the songs.
You look like a mixture of Philip Seymour Hoffman and Andy Warhol, what is your favorite Hoffman movie and Warhol piece?
I’ve never been compared to those two people, at the same time before, though I do see the resemblance. I’m a huge fan of both of them, to tell you the truth, so I gladly take the compliment.
I’m a fan of Philip Seymour Hoffman. He’s definitely one of the best character actors working today. I think it would have to come down to a tie between Happiness and Capote, but let’s face it, he’s great in everything he’s done (even Along Came Polly.) Todd Solondz’s, Happiness, is classic Seymour Hoffman and Solondz: equal parts compelling and disturbing. I think one of the greatest things about Philip Seymour Hoffman, is that he somehow elicits a humanity from his performances that allows us to see a little piece of ourselves in his portrayals. Songwriting, aspires to the same goals.
As for Warhol, I am a huge fan, even to the point of having made the pilgrimage to the Warhol museum in Pittsburgh, (and yes, t-shirts were purchased). 5 floors of Andy including some of his taxidermy collection. Well worth a look. As for my favorite Warhol works, I have to throw down another tie, between his Flowers series from the early ’60’s, and a sentimental favorite, Elvis 1 and 2.
…as for being a procrastinator. If I was, Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow, would have ended with the title.
Latest Review - June 21, 2010
Just got a great review, from Gary Allen. Click on the "press" link on the left to check it out. Gary is an amazing musician (and a great writer)--I have great respect for his work. His review is surely one of the highlights of my career, thus far. Let me know what you think!
Lots of other exciting things going on...will be able to update more here, v. soon!
Getting it out there - June 2, 2010
So, had my first plays on internet radio (met some really cool people and got some great feedback--which is nice). We're researching places to send the album to. There are so many choices for the Indie musician out there, and we're checking out every single one of them (well, we're trying to!) There are great resources and amazing people who genuinely love music and want to help.
I also got my twitter account up and running and am working on my myspace page too. Stop by and say Hi! It's a process, but it's great to be able to meet other musicians and artists online.
Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow - May 3, 2010
"Maybe Not Today, Maybe Tomorrow," is in transit from Oasis. We are expecting the CDs in the next couple of days. All the information here, will be updated frequently, as we figure out all our links. We'll have information here about where to buy the CD online and where Bing is playing.