A Conversation With Singer-Songwriter Hamish Anderson

(Photo by Elaine Torres; courtesy of Effective Immediately PR)

By: Jacob Elyachar, jakes-take.com

It is a pleasure to welcome Blues guitarist and singer-songwriter Hamish Anderson to Jake’s Take.

Inspired by the music of Keith Richards, Peter Green, and the late Tom Petty, B.B. King and Jeff Buckley, Hamish left his native home to pursue his passion for music in Los Angeles. Since arriving in the United States, his impeccable sound and artistry caught the attention of King and fellow guitar virtuoso Gary Clark, Jr.  He also had the unique opportunity of open for “The Thrill is Gone” guitarist, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Vintage Trouble, and Wynonna Judd.

Hamish also won a plethora of awards including the Independent Music Award for Best Song-Blues in 2015, Yahoo! Music’s Top 10 Best New Artists of 2016, and was named Taco Bell’s “Feed the Beat” artist of Fall 2017.  In November, Hamish will be taking his award-winning sound across the United States on tour. The tour, which will promote stops in New York City, Boston, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C., will feature music from his new album: Trouble.

In this edition of A Conversation, Hamish Anderson spoke about the opportunity to open up for his hero, B.B. King, overcoming the challenges he faced breaking into the music industry and previewed his upcoming tour.

Jacob Elyachar: When did you get interested in music? How did that passion evolve into the desire to pursue a career in the music industry?

Hamish Anderson: I became interested in music when I was 12-years-old. I heard The Beatles’ records and just fell in love with their music and became obsessed with the guitar. My dad’s record collection was what developed my love of music and mainly the blues and rock and roll. In my later teens, I started to grow confidence in my singing and songwriting — that was when I decided that I wanted to pursue music full time as a career.

Jacob Elyachar: You had the opportunity to be the last musician to share the stage with Blues icon B.B. King. What did that opportunity mean to you as a performer?

Hamish Anderson: It was an honor to get to open up for B.B. King. His music meant so much to me, and he had been such a huge influence on me as a musician, and guitar player that just getting the opportunity to support him on tour was something I will never forget and always be grateful for.

Jacob Elyachar: What are some of the challenges that you faced breaking into the recording industry? How did you overcome them?

Hamish Anderson: Being a musician has its up and downs and especially being an independent artist – it’s a lot of hard work. Finding a small, but a great team is essential for any artist. You cannot do everything yourself, and you need to be surrounded by people who are helping you bring your vision to life. I think maybe fifteen years ago you would have been signed by a label to get your music out there and a label had a lot of power. These days I think it’s great that artists can distribute their music themselves and you do not have to rely on anyone to do it for you.

Jacob Elyachar: Let’s talk about the recording process of your debut album, Trouble. What were some of your favorite tracks to record?

Hamish Anderson: I was very fortunate to work with a great producer Jim Scott who has worked with some of my heroes like Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Tedeschi Trucks Band and Johnny Cash. We invited a bunch of great musicians, and we recorded the tracks live together in the room. Then later we would add some overdubs of guitar parts, percussion et cetera, but I try to keep it close to what it would sound like live at a show even. One of my favorite tracks to record was “Working Blues” which was the first song I recorded with Jim and it we got it done in the first 30 mins on the first day, so that was really exciting. The song “U” was really exciting to record because it did not sound like anything I wrote or recorded before and it was just a really cool exploration of sound with the hypnotic organ and dreamy guitar parts.

Jacob Elyachar: You will be traveling across the United States in November. What are you looking forward to the most about touring across the country? What can fans expect from your tour?

Hamish Anderson: It has been over a year since I played on the east coast, so I am definitely looking forward to that! For most of the tour, I’ll be supporting an awesome band called The Main Squeeze and a nearly all the venues we are playing I have not played before, so I am excited for this run of shows! I’ll be trying out a fair bit of new material too that will be on my sophomore album releasing next year, so it’s always fun playing new material for audiences and seeing how it translates.

Jacob Elyachar: If you had the opportunity to meet with aspiring musicians and singer-songwriters who want to pursue a career in the recording industry, what advice would you share with them?

Hamish Anderson: Do not follow trends. It seems like a lot of people just follow the flavor of the month musically nowadays and want to be instantly famous. I don’t think that’s what music is about and I think it should be about being true to yourself and your musical vision.

For more information about Hamish Anderson, visit his website!

You can also connect with him on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter & YouTube.

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Copyright 2015 Jacob Elyachar