X Factor hopeful & TeenStar 2013 winner Luke Friend admits "I just don't use shampoo"
Interview with TeenStar, Sept. ‘13
To kick things off, can you give us a funny fact about Luke Friend?
I’m an unintentional comedian and I haven’t washed my hair for quite a long time (I just don’t use shampoo, because I don’t feel the need to)
Describe yourself in three words?
Crazy, laidback, hippie kid
You look very different to when you entered Open Mic UK, do you think image plays an important role for any musician?
I think image play’s a very important role, it expresses what you like and what you’re like! (sounds odd I know) it shows your attitude whether your wild or calm
So, what’s life been like for you since winning TeenStar?
It’s been awesome, I’ve had so many people congratulating me which is really lovely and everything’s now on a whole new level and I’ve got loads of new gigs to play
Do you think TeenStar has helped you gain confidence as an artist?
Teenstar does so many things for an artist, helps you gain confidence, connect with an audience, build up your emotive process in a song. Yes, definitely
Did you think you had a good chance of winning?
Never ever! It was an amazing feeling, at the time I was just enjoying the whole amazing experience and meeting some great musicians! Winning it was a massive bonus
Were you nervous?
A bit, everyone was, but at the same time it was such an exciting feeling
You entered Open Mic UK in previous years, do you think that has really helped develop you as artist?
Over the years I have developed my own style and image as a musician, these competitions certainly help recognize your own personality and skills that your good at and not so good at. Yes it’s helped so much
What other things have you done to develop your music career?
Songwriting is one of the main aspects of music I have really focused on and this has helped me to develop myself and my music career because, you never realize until you share a song with an audience that, the song relates so much to them too, creating the performance to be personal between you and the crowd
What’s been the single most important thing to date, musically?
Musically, has to be writing and recording my own songs to share with an audience! I love that
As a result of winning TeenStar you’ve played and impressed at a few festivals this summer?
I adore playing at festivals, they’re always a great time, I was so happy that people enjoyed my own songs at the festivals as well as the covers I did, I can’t wait to play even more in the future!
Which festival was your favourite?
Looe Music Festival, I mean The Darkness and Reef are playing, that’s gonna be so rad! Including loads of other artists, as well as playing music I love watching, being inspired
Do you like playing at festivals?
LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE (Jim Carrey voice)
Which would be your ultimate festival to play at?
Main Stage at Glastonbury or Leeds festival, I would love that so much, plus Leeds is my birth town so that would be a lovely feeling to play at such an awesome event there. Would mean so much to me personally
Do you feel being based in the south West has been a help or hindrance?
It’s hard to say because wherever a teenager lives, they always want to be somewhere else sometimes! But songwriting here is so great, as the scenery is just too great to miss for inspiration
How difficult is it to get your name known as an unsigned performer?
It is a really difficult thing to do but if you want it enough, work hard and passionate enough about playing to an audience and sharing music, you will succeed
What importance do you place on your social networks to increase your fan base?
High importance, social media in this day and age is really key to getting a positive and dedicated fan base from around the world!
What tips would you give to those who are trying to get their name out there?
Be yourself and make sure you talk with other musicians who have more experience than you to help you understand more about what to do, keep in touch with people who enjoy your music as much as you can
How hard is it to make contacts in the industry?
Depending on how much you gig it can differ, but yes it is hard, just don’t ever give up that’s the worst thing you could do
What is the most difficult thing about being unsigned?
Getting gigs can sometimes be hard if you are not well known, but playing at places such as Open Mic can change all of that and help you get gigs around your local area and, later on, further afield
What’s Luke Friend’s your favourire artists?
Pearl Jam (is my main love), Bob Marley, Cyndi Lauper, Matt Corby, Ben Howard, loads of artists!! All music inspires me in some form
Describe your music in three words?
Personal, meaningful, happy
People you respect and admire?
Friends, family and fans!
If you could collaborate with any artist who would it be?
Pearl Jam or Jeff Buckley
What’s next for Luke Friend?
Lots of gigs and song writing!
Notes to Editors
For further info, contact Dion at SPIN on 0845 257 1479 / email@example.com