Britpop may have faded away from the mainstream but no such adversity has stopped rising singer-songwriter star Fynbos. His new single, ‘The Only One’ is as heartfelt as it is indelible and we had the privilege to find out more about the man behind the moniker….
1. When was the last time you discovered an artist through word of mouth?
My friends usually recommend music to me on a regular basis. To answer your question, not too long ago.
2. How useful is the tool of ‘word of mouth’ when an artist is just starting their career?
Useful but it becomes such a crutch. Hoping and waiting for word of mouth to pick up.
3. What were your first ‘tools of promotion’ when you first started in music?
Mainly trying to do gigs whilst handing out free CDs and myspace links (when that was still a thing).
4. What made you choose the path of music?
When I was introduced to bands like Travis and Coldplay, I really saw myself doing what they were doing. Making music that “spoke to people” and playing live in front of many people.
5. What do you think the industry would look like without streaming platforms like Spotify?
Finding new music would be more of a challenge. But then again, people have always found ways to hear new music **Cough**Napster **cough**
6. Do you think your career and current music making abilities/style would be different had you not had that ten year interlude?
Maybe. You can never know what would have happened had I continued. I still have a back catalogue of tracks I wrote that I would have put out in some form, I guess. I think my music would have also evolved.
7. Are you ultimately grateful for it or is it not easy to feel that as much as you’d like? We’re all human after all!
Life takes you to unexpected places and the journey is always worth savouring. Without it, you will never be who you are today. That’s always been my mantra in life. Those 10 years allowed me to grow in other ways that may or may not have been possible if I continued on the initial path. The short answer is I’m grateful for the journey.
8. What would you say to people who are potentially going through what you went through and feel like they haven’t ‘come out the other side’ yet?
It’s not going to be an easy ride.
9. We can feel it in your music, but what was that isolating and subsequent yearning experience for you, or was the song mainly rooted in your empathy and you cannot define a singular ‘experience’?
I describe my music as “heart on the sleeve” melancholia. Sometimes it’s from personal experience. Sometimes I write it like a story from another person’s perspective. Seeing stories unfold during the pandemic of people separated over long distances made me come up with songs like The Only One.
10. Did anyone or anything inspire you to start making music again or was it self-initiated?
My daughter told me about her experiences being bullied at school. I had previously written a song called Angel suit more than 11 years ago and I thought I should spend some time putting it out. This was really the spark I needed. From there on, It was a snowball for me. It was like falling in love all over again with writing and playing music. I realised how much I missed it.
11. Have you still been playing over the past ten years, if just for pleasure? If so, why? Did it just feel fated or did you not mind not re-entering the professional sphere?
When I gave up on music, I was feeling burnt out and sold all my gear but kept one single guitar which rarely got a looking at. During the pandemic, I had some spare money so I thought I’d buy a new guitar which led me to spend more time playing this “new shiny toy”. That got me back into enjoying playing again. I started writing again (something I thought I’d never regain).
For fans of Arcade Fire, The Divine Comedy, and The Flaming Lips, you can find ‘The Only One’ and Fynbos via the links below: