Interview Series: Clark Graham

I love songs that trigger emotions long forgotten, melodies that take me back to another place in time. Vancouver native, Los Angeles based singer & songwriter Clark Graham shook me to the core when I first caught his act a few months ago. Standing tall on the stage with only his guitar and a harmonica, he has the voice of an angel and the soul of a true artist. I simply couldn’t take my eyes off him, felt like watching a legend in the making. I urge you to join me at Hotel Cafe on Thursday night, December 20 7PM to meet this prodigious new songwriter on the Hollywood scene and get a free digital copy of his new EP. In the meantime, enjoy this beautiful 8mm video for his song “Welcome To California” and check out our Q&A. Photos courtesy of Dan Steinberg.

Q&A

LF: How was it to collaborate with your sister Lauren on this video?

CG: It was great.Collaboration is all about being comfortable and enjoying who your working with.The fact that were related made it easy to swap ideas. Her knowledge and vision helped steer the ship in the right direction.

LF: Why did you decide to shoot on 8mm film?
CG: My sister had a old super 8 camera and lot’s of film laying around. I think one day we just went out and shot some things and the idea slowly progressed from there. I had previously never worked with 8mm.It gave it a 1970’s home movie vibe.Very Intimate and direct.

LF: You’ve come a long way since you’ve first landed in California, and now you are ready to launch your 4-track EP on Thursday. Can you talk about the process?

CG: Its been a rewarding process for me. Los Angeles can be overwhelming a first but I’ve been lucky enough to work with some great people and make a record I’m really proud of. The experiences pour into the songs.

LF: Why did you pick these four songs?
CG: They were easy to choose. They do the best job of representing the feeling of the full length record (which will come in 2013) The EP is a personal invitation to fans and listeners. It gives a chance to let people into what I do. These 4 songs are are very unique in themselves. They stand alone individually and collectively. Definitely some of my favorites.

LF: Can you discuss your creative process when songwriting?
CG: I just keep at it everyday. I like to stay open to the idea of writing all the time. I rarely go a day without scribbling something down. I’ve always believed the further you go into your craft the more you get out of it. A good song should invoke some sort of emotion and that’s what I strive for. Its hard to explain. You just have to be respectful of it.

LF: Tell me about your experience playing live at The Hotel Cafe in Hollywood.
CG: The Hotel has been my favorite venue to play. It just fits who I am right now as an artist. its big enough for something special to happen and small enough to keep it personal. Its been my oasis In L.A.

LF: What’s the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?
CG: (Laugh) usually it’s coffee. I suppose it changes from day to day, but I often find myself listening to music or reading. I love a good morning.

LF: If you could share the stage with another artist, dead or alive, who would it be?
CG: I suppose John Lennon would be close to the top. I could list a 100 artists I’d love to perform with. Hopefully I can live out a few of them.

LF: Do you believe in love?
CG: I believe in the possibility of Love. If you don’t leave yourself open to the chance of love, that would be a shame.

LF: How fast do you live?
CG: Sometimes I feel not fast enough.There’s always another gear to go to.

It’s All Gucci…