AmeriCymru: Hi Meilir and many thanks for agreeing to this interview. Care to introduce your forthcoming single 'It Begins' for our readers?
Meilir: My new single is out now and is called ‘It Begins’. It will be the opening track (if nothing changes) to my debut album ‘In Tune’ that will be released in March 2020. I have been busy recording the songs with producer Charlie Francis (R.E.M., The High Llamas, Sweet Baboo) in Cardiff. I am very excited about putting out this new music as I think, and from the reaction I’m getting, this album including the first single ‘It Begins’ is some of my best work to date. ’It Begins’ is about starting again, a new beginning, hopefully implementing the things that I've learned in life and moving forwards.
AmeriCymru: In the past you have released a series of E.P's but no album. 'IN TUNE' is due for release in March next year. What can we expect from Meilir Tomos' first album and why has it taken so long?
Meilir: I’ve wanted to make an album since I was in my late teens, one that would change the world. That was the plan. I think that sort of pressure on myself is one of the reasons it’s taken so long to get to this stage. I still have high standards but I’m a little more mature now and realise there are things in this world more important than music, sometimes. I’m more focused now on creating good art not so much changing the world. My original plan for my music release wise was to put out three E.P’s, that kind of happened and now over the past year I’ve been focused on putting this album together. I received funding from the PRS Foundation and that kick-started the project and made it a reality. Without their help there probably wouldn't be an album. Musically I’ve developed as a songwriter, there is more depth to the songs I feel. Delivering a performance in the studio is something I have improved on, nothing on the record is overdone, you know taken from take 48 or something or even take 4, the actual recording process has been quite fast with intervals of weeks in-between the recording sessions. I think that’s a good thing. I’m very happy with how the record sounds and I can’t wait to share it with the world next year. My records are very personal, This album is no different. One of the reasons they take so long for me to complete I think. There are themes on ‘IN TUNE’ that carry from my first two records; I suppose it's like a sound track to my life in a way. Some of the parts that made up the demos for this record are at least eight years old; it's been good to take a little longer over the process but it will be nice to finally complete them and let them go.
AmeriCymru: It's been a while since we last spoke and I wanted to take the opportunity to ask you about your stunning 'Arabella' E.P. I find myself continually returning to the 'Spero' track but I have to ask ... is this a message of hope or is there a note of cynicism in that chorus?
Meilir: There is a message of hope to that song. I have had a tendency to over think things in the past and maybe worry about the outcome of things. My focus in the past could be on the few things that I didn’t like about my life. Probably not in a healthy way, when in truth, there was a lot of good things going on. ‘Spero' is about being in a place that may not be comfortable but realising that this will pass and that there is a lot to be thankful for, especially in tough times.
AmeriCymru: You are a classically trained pianist and vocalist. It has been said that you 'grew frustrated with the classical world’s artistic limitations'. What caused this frustration and what determined your present creative direction?
Meilir: I suppose this was about my determination and desire to create music rather than just to perform music. I was singing in competitions and concerts from a young age and I enjoyed it but at a certain time I really wanted to create my own music. Music that was different to what I had been doing all my life and performing how I was coached, sticking to the composers wishes was not what i wanted to do anymore. I wanted to be the composer!
AmeriCymru: You toured recently with the Joy Formidable on their European tour. Care to tell us a little about that experience?
Meilir: It was amazing. The Joy Formidable were so nice to tour with, they are lovely people. The experience really was invaluable. I had the best time ever, and I grew as a musician and a live performer on that tour. Traveling around sharing my music live, performing every night. It’s what I want to do! I learned a lot on that tour and I have changed a few things up about my live show and my set up from seeing how The Joy Formidable did things. It’s made my live show a lot smoother and better. I can’t wait to be back out on the road performing this new material live.
AmeriCymru: Where can people go to hear and buy your music online?
Meilir: ‘It Begins’ is streaming everywhere now!!! So people should be able to find it on their favourite streaming platform! You can buy the single directly from meilir.bandcamp.com here the single also has the song Glasshouse New Moons X version from the compilation for Killing Moon Records. You can also buy from all online stores such as iTunes. The pre-order for the album will be up soon on my bandcamp page.
AmeriCymru: What's next for Meilir Tomos? Any new recordings planned? Tours?
Meilir: I have started thinking about whats next, a possible EP that’s just for Piano & Voice is in the works, something a bit more stripped down than this album. I’m also starting a new electronic project with a friend. But I’m focused on this record for now and trying to make sure people get to hear it after all the hard work I’ve put in!!! There will be a tour to promote the album in the UK and I’m possibly Ireland. So covering Wales, Scotland, Ireland & England. With a few special shows planed in some out of the ordinary locations. It’s secret for now but will be announced in the new year!
AmeriCymru: Any final message for the readers and members of AmeriCymru?
Meilir: Yes, thanks for paying attention to what I do, please tell your friends about me and what I do and share my music wide if you like it!!! There is a video coming soon to Youtube it would be nice to get some follows on my channel, that’s something Im trying to build up with some more videos to come soon. Thanks for having me on for an interview… Bydd Wych X