It’s time for the first Track of the Week of 2018, here’s ‘Stars’ from BIMM Birmingham songwriting student Ryan Sparrow…
What was the inspiration behind your track?
I was inspired by the track ‘Glory’ by Dermot Kennedy. I really connected with the swells and uplifting moments of the track contradicting with the dark lyrics and poetic flow. That’s the kind of vibe I was going for really.
What did your songwriting process involve?
My process started with percussive tapping on the guitar. I usually play with the guitar on my lap and tap the bridge for the chords in open different tunings. I then just hum the melody and let the lyrics flow whenever they come. I wrote it within 20 minutes of starting and didn’t really do too many tweaks afterwards and yeah, I’m super stoked with the results.
What things do you do differently to other bands?
I think my biggest difference is the tapping. I’ve only seen a few people play the guitar like I do and it seems to grab peoples attention. Most people come up to me after a show going “you HAVE to show me how to do that!” and it’s super flattering. I love that people enjoy what I do and I hope to connect with more everyday.
Can you describe your sound in three words?
Loud, broad and connecting.
Have you channeled any artist in particular on this track?
I’ve channeled quite a few really. I really enjoy Dermot Kennedy’s sound at the minute, the guy’s going to blow up! But yeah, I usually channel artists such as Ben Howard, Joni Mitchell, John Martyn and I added the ‘big band’ sound from the Bon Iver self titled album.
What’s the best thing about studying at BIMM?
The best thing about BIMM is the people. I’ve made friends for life already and I’ve only been here 3 months! You won’t find anywhere else where there are so many like minded people in one place looking to help each other and vibe off each other. It’s magical to be honest.
What’s the best bit of music advice you’ve been given?
I wouldn’t really call it ‘music advice’ but it definitely connects so well with it. Jim Carrey once said “You can fail at what you don’t want, so you might as well take a chance at doing what you love.”
What’s next for you?
I hit the studio again at the end of January to get down some singles, including a second version of this track! Gigs are always on the cards and I’m looking to book up some festivals for the summer time but we’ll see. Stay tuned into my Facebook and Instagram to keep up to date with what I’m doing! Cheeky plug there….