Following the release of his debut single, It’s Gonna Get Better, earlier this year; we sat down with Geordie singer-songwriter Andrew Cushin, to chat about music and his debut release. A perfect introduction, and debut single, from Andrew; It’s Gonna Get Better is a spectacular track that shows off his incredible vocals, and is accompanied by an equally beautiful music video that plays homage to his hometown of Newcastle Upon Tyne. Definitely one of 2020’s “ones to watch”; stay up to date with all his latest releases here, and keep on reading for the full interview with Andrew down below!
TSU: Without using the words singer/songwriter, how would you describe yourself?
ANDREW: I’m just an ordinary lad from Newcastle, I enjoy a drink and laugh. I used to play football until this music carry on kicked off and since then I’ve had a little less time for all the social stuff but it’s all great fun! I supposed I’d describe myself as quite driven now. I know what I want to achieve and I’m determined to getting myself to a level where I can achieve it.
TSU:With you having just started out on your journey in music; talk me through how your journey began, and what got you into music?
ANDREW: I was doing a few tiny gigs just for the love of playing the guitar, I never fancied myself as much of a guitarist, and there’s still a lot I’m yet to learn, but I always loved a good sing along on nights out etc. So once I had a few tunes written I decided to put myself out there, also earns ya a bit extra coin aswell! My ‘musical journey’ started at a bar called “The St Peters Middle Club” which is in Byker in Newcastle. It was at this gig I was spotted by my soon to be manager.
It all started to piece together from there really.
TSU: So you just released your debut single, It’s Gonna Get Better, earlier this year! Congratulations, it’s an amazing track. Tell me a bit about the song! What was the writing process like, and what was your inspiration for the track?
ANDREW: That song took about 15/20 minutes to write, if that! I had a pretty bad argument with the mother and was staying at my girlfriends because of it. I knew we both said some things we couldn’t take back so I thought, quite brilliantly, the only way to earn a bit of forgiveness would be to write a song about it and send it over to her. It worked anyway haha!
TSU:When deciding to release It’s Gonna Get Better as your debut single; was that track the obvious choice, or was it hard to decide what your first single should be?
ANDREW: The thought process was we had two songs mastered and ready to go out… the next tune I’m releasing was always the better sounding song and the song we all believed would be better perceived by the public. So we all decided to put out Its Gonna Get Better first to get people listening to what I believe is a good song, then follow it up with my second single which will blow it away.
TSU: How would you say growing up in Newcastle has influenced your song writing?
ANDREW: I grew up on a little council estate until I was about 13, they were the best years of my life. Pinching shopping trollies, homemade swings, games of spot up against people’s back gates. It was just class! I never picked up the guitar until 3 years later after we had moved on to a new area. I’ve got plenty songs written about my childhood and what me and my mates used to get up to, it’s just about keeping them hidden away until it’s time for people to hear them.
TSU: Being a songwriter, and the one to write the music that you’re releasing; how do you decide what you write about and what tracks you release?
ANDREW: I just pick up the guitar, close my eyes and sing whatever I’m feeling. If it’s shit then that’s fine, I don’t put myself under any pressure to write a song, what ever happens, happens. I use song writing more as a grief or counselling process then as a job. It helps me forget or deal with any shit I have on my mind at that time. Me and my team all discuss releasing of music etc, it’s never left to just one person which is always good as it means we all have a say.
TSU: So far, what’s been your favourite part of the whole music process; the writing, the producing, or the touring and performing?
ANDREW: For me it’ll always be performing, I love writing and recording but with that you can always go back over your song and rectify any mistakes or improve lyrics etc. With performing it’s one chance, I love knowing that if I mess up a lyric or forget a chord I’ll not get that chance back. It keeps me on my toes and equally when I play a blinding gig it makes me feel on top of the world. Performing is key for me like.
TSU: Who would you say are some of your main musical influences right now, and are there any artists you’d love to collaborate and work with?
ANDREW: Massively influenced by artists such as Noel Gallagher, Jake Bugg, Donovan, Paul Weller, Richard Ashcroft and maybe a bit of Damien Rice. Artists I’m really enjoying at the moment has to be The Lathums, Fontaine’s DC and re listening to all the Paolo Nutini stuff has been class as well.
TSU: Is there any advice you’d give to younger singer/songwriters, looking to break through into the industry?
ANDREW: gig, gig, gig … I know a few artists that have either amazing songs or a class voice but they’ve never played infront of more than 8 or 9 people, you’ve gotta be banging on pubs and club doors begging for gigs. I played some horrible gigs before I got onto proper tours etc. I think a new artist has to be prepared to play those type of gigs so that they appreciate the bigger shows when they come.
TSU: What does the rest of 2020 look like for you, and what can we expect in the form of more new music?
ANDREW: Well fingers crossed the whole world is gonna get out of this pandemic and I can continue where I left off. I’ve lost a lot of festivals due to this pandemic and it would be easy for me to now sit back and say “well I tried” and just give up but I’m determined not to let this affect me at all. Once this virus is over I can’t wait to get back on a stage, wherever that may be.
Keep up to date with Andrew on social media: @AndrewCushin