INTERVIEW: Speaking with MARKX about ‘dancing on my grave’ and new EP!


MARKX is a contemporary singer songwriter & creative entrepreneur. His captivating songs about love, life, loss & laughter are the soundtrack to modern life. Having turned his back on a successful corporate career, he has since penned songs for artists with the writers behind Beyoncè, Jennifer Lopez, Leann Rimes, Will Young, Paloma Faith to name a few.

Reviews:

“I’m impressed by the vocal quality and production of the tracks” Jeff Smith, BBC Radio 2/ 6 Music


Jeff Smith, BBC Radio 2/ 6 Music:

“I’m impressed by the vocal quality and production of the tracks”

I had the pleasure of speaking to Markx about his new single release ‘Dancing on my grave’ and his ep that will be released in October 2020

You can listen to dancing on my grave here:

hi Markx, Thank you for talking to us today, how are you?

I’m superb thank you.. well as well as one could possibly be in these crazy times. How about you?

For people who don’t know tell us about yourself?

I’m a UK based singer songwriter and entrepreneur. I write songs about love, life, loss and laughter. I’m passionate about mental health and travel and love going off on adventures around the globe. I also love cooking and my new dream is to become a TV presenter!

Let’s talk about your new single ‘dancing On my grave’ , , what was the inspiration behind the song?

The song is about unfinished business and centred around that stage of closure just before acceptance. It’s about wanting someone to let you go but acknowledging the power they still have over you.

Can you tell me a bit about the recording/writing process and what do you enjoy the most out of the two?

The majority of the songs I write have at least one co-writer, normally there will be three of us in the room. I definitely enjoy the writing process the most and this was written on a lovely day up in Newcastle with Bryony Dunn & Hattie Murdoch. For me it’s the shared connection and experiences between us that make the magic. I’m first and foremost a live performer so recording in a studio can be challenging given the fact that the sound is so permanent. I enjoy the discipline of recording, working to a schedule and taking a bit more of a back seat (even though I don’t really like being told what to do he he he)

What’s one of your favourite lyrics from the song?

The opening line came so quickly and pretty much sums up the song – ‘just let me rest in pieces’

What would you like people to take away from the song when they’ve listened/are listening to it?

Most of the songs I write have a message and provide a ‘resolution’ but purposely this one was left hanging. I think it’s important to acknowledge the fact that some things are never resolved and the frustration that can follow loss. It’s nice to hear that people who have listened to it can relate to it. The ‘Spirit’ EP has a theme of being haunted throughout so it would be nice to make people stop and think. 

How long did it take you to write/record this song?

The song came together so swiftly – within a couple of hours and we got cracking on the demo straight after. The first version of the song was a completely different feel to the ‘Spirit’ version.  The new version was created solely throughout lockdown – remotely between Brighton and Newcastle where the producer (HATi) is based.

Why did you decide to call this single ‘dancing on my grave’

I’d had the title for a while and often have writers in mind for the song. I always think back to the last verse of ‘Lord Of The Dance’ about the devil on your back and imagined how disrespectful it would be to dance on someone’s resting place (kids don’t try this at home)

What has your fans reactions been to the song?

The new sound has been well received – it’s so rewarding to see new followers and people within your network you didn’t even know were following messaging their support. This campaign is all about stepping out a bit more from behind the keyboard as an artist– so I’ve made a vow to film videos for all of the tracks to show people who I am and what I do!

What’s your favourite thing about releasing a single?

It’s seeing the idea come from a spark to a completed piece of art. Watching it grow from nothing and turn into something permanent that will be there long after you’ve departed.

You also have a new EP coming in October/ how excited are you for that?

Super stoked – I wish you could see my coathanger grin! And to be releasing music despite Covid-19 trying to ruining everyone’s lives makes it even more exciting.

How many songs will be on the EP?

‘Spirit’ was originally going to be a six track EP but I’m exploring splitting this into 2 smaller EPs. It’s nice to not be bound by the rules of times past where you would put out 4 singles and then an album.

Are you able to give us a sneak peak of what we could expect from the new EP?

I’ve written a track for the EP called ‘For A Little While’ – it’s the first song I’ve penned solely on my own and the song I’m most proud of to date. The EP will be a much more stripped back sound, not so heavily produced – you can expect more emotion and honesty.

Is it different from any other songs you have created? 

I feel like I am still no closer to understanding my own ‘sound’. I feel each time I record a track I get that bit closer so like to have that in mind that nothing is ever truly finished. That mindset has helped me so much as an artist.

How do you prepare for the release of a new single?

I’m starting to get into a nice flow with managing release campaigns. The whole industry is changing by the day – I have a wonderful little team at MARKX HQ to bounce ideas off and help. My advice to anyone who is planning a release is to look at what your peers are up to for inspiration. I often reference Beth Keeping and Lauren Ray as great benchmarks and role models for independent music.

Have you got any shows in the works at the moment?

I realise this will come across as pompous and self-serving, but I’ve made the difficult decision not to stream any online gigs during lockdown at the moment. It just doesn’t sit right with me as an artist given that I’ve spent most of my adult life playing the grassroots venues, fronting bands and feed off of the energy in a room. I love seeing facial expressions, making eye contact and the whole excitement of a buzzing venue – I feel that is my prerogative as an artist and a performer; to put on the best performance I can. As soon as venue sizes can increase I have plans to do a full live show with my band.

2020/2021 plans in the works??

In October I will start writing songs for a new MARKX project, although it’s early days I’ve been thinking about how people come through difficult times, what helps them survive tough times and what they’ve learned in their lives. I’m pretty sure 2020 will have influenced these songs in a deeply profound way. I’m throwing everything at 2021 as an artist – I feel there’s never been a better opportunity to reach more people and get the songs heard.  Bring it on.

Thank you Mark for speaking to us over on Encore! Can’t wait to hear the full EP!

You can follow Markx here:

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