Charlie Phillips - intelligibly poetic
Charlie Phillips, is predominately a solo singer/songwriter, successfully funding his latest music-video 'Golden Hour' with Kickstarter. (linked below)
Through this singer/songwriter label and using his recent video as a reference, I delve into how his music is created in the solo form, as-well-as how his eureka moment formed his new song. (unabridged audio interview below)
Taking to heart the American pop couture of the late 1960's - early 1970's, along with the poetic lyricism of artists like James Taylor, Jackson Browne and Bob Dylan, Charlie credits this era of musical history as the source of his musical essence.
The first thing Charlie explains about being a soloist is the joy of stripping a song to its core, engrossing in its lyrics and melody, then expounding on its basic representation. Although that's a phrase widely used by solo musicians, it's here that he makes his distinction as he explains how he no longer strives to be another "Jimi Hendrix" - a goal he attributed himself to in his teen years - "that's not my jam" he says, "I prefer to be an easy joyful listen, appreciated while someone is making breakfast or something".
His song 'Golden Hour', represents this easy listening - it's simplistic and enjoyable. Even though it's his latest song, I could tell by his passion that there is an underlying sense of pride and respect for it. As in every field of work, no matter the context, there is always a eureka moment that one can recollect. But for musicians and artists, they live off of these moments of unexplained creativity! For Charlie, his moment came by taking advantage of a work break and getting out of the New York City's July humidity. Here's his eureka moment in his own words - " I was just kind of cruising along heading upstate NY, the sun was setting on a beautiful July evening, when these melody just came to me. Usually with these mysterious unexplainable moments, I've trained myself to sit and write, not solely relying on it, but there are those moments of pure inspiration, one that you hold out for; those are the best moments as a songwriter. I had one of these moments driving upstate."
One topic him and I discussed during the interview, was how he aims to have people relate to his music, bringing their own interpretation to it's meaning. On that note, here is my interpretation on the song 'Golden Hour': Although I learned through our interview that the lyrics came about via its literal action, I attribute the phrase to have a double standard. As was mentioned in this article, eureka moments happen by unexplainable circumstances, moments that come and go, moments that some cherish more than others. It's these moments that should be cherished and relished in, same as the euphoric joy that comes from seeing a perfect golden sunset on a magical July evening; love it like 'Golden Hour'!
Charlie Phillips will be performing solo at the upcoming 'For Locals By Locals' event, Tuesday February 25th at Mister Rogers, in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Come experience Charlie's easy-listening, joyful music for yourself. Doors open at 8pm, click here for a link to the event .
For more on Charlie Phillips and his music, browse his website, Here.
Article by Avi Werde - Photos by Schneur Menaker Photography