THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Darren McShane of Superturtle

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The Industry
THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Darren McShane of Superturtle

Singer, songwriter, guitarist and producer Darren McShane has previously appeared on an Elsewhere questionnaire – five years ago – but on the back of the new Superturtle album which arrived at the end of last year we thought it time to give him a different set of questions.

The new album is Student Flat Reunion and with its keyboards, slamming electrobeats and vocal angst it sometimes seemed as if it a lost collection from the early Eighties.

It's fun . . . with a straight face.

And with 19 songs in less than an hour on the CD – the vinyl edition has 13 on record and the rest on a CD – it keeps everything tight and short.

McShane has served time in bands like Chainsaw Masochist and Figure 60 but the long-running if intermittent Superturtle head off in other directions.

Back to the Eighties mostly.

The first song which made you think, 'Now that's a well crafted piece of work' was . . .

Living For The City by Stevie Wonder , my brother brought the 7inch while I got Rubberband Man by The Spinners , but his choice sounded classier .

Complete this sentence: The first song I wrote was . . .

“ Don’t Mind Me “ a ska song formed around the bassline. It got played later in the set of my first band Stick No Bills.

The one songwriter you will always listen to, even if they disappointed you previously, is?

Can I list two ? Paul McCartney for melodic strength and emotional impact and John Lydon for originality and scathing humour.

As songwriters: Lennon-McCartney or Jagger-Richards; kd lang or Katy Perry; Madonna or Michael Jackson; Johnny Cash or Kris Kristofferson?

Lennon-McCartney, kd lang, Madonna and Johnny Cash.

The three songs (yours, or by others) you would love everyone to hear because they are well crafted are . . .

Brian Wilson – God Only Knows; Chris Knox & The Nothing – Ice; Morrissey – Suedehead

Melody first? Words or phrase first? Simultaneous?

Melody first.

The best book on music or musicians you have read is . . .

The Real Frank Zappa Book with Peter Occhiogrosso.

If you could co-write with anyone it would be . . .

Elvis Costello , if we could veer back to post-punk/new wave. He would definitely do the lyrics.

21_coverThe last CD or vinyl album you bought was . . .

a second hand vinyl copy of Real Life by Magazine

And your most recent downloads include . . .

The Chills – Snow Bound via the code that came with the record.

One song, royalties for life, never have to work again. The song by anyone, yourself included, which wouldn't embarrass you would be . . .

Valley Town by Superturtle.

One line (or couplet) from a song -- yours or someone else's -- which you think is just a stone cold winner is . . .

Let just discard what makes us tick and act like we are really thick and slow, take pen in hand, and sign the dotted line, so everything will turn out fine.

Songwriting: what's the ratio of inspiration/perspiration?

90% Inspiration

Ever had a song come to you fully-formed like it dropped into your lap?

Many times

Student Flat Reunion by Superturtle (and their earlier albums) is on Sarang Bang Records and available through digital outlets

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