Posted On 05 Jul 2017
“Music is the only constant I’ve had in my life,” reflects Joe Fox. “I don’t remember living anywhere when I was younger for more than a year at most, so I’d been to 10 schools by the time I was 16. Music was my only real source of stability. It gave me an identity.”
Joe Fox is the elusive British songwriter whose inspirations range from Kurt Cobain to Lauryn Hill, and he’s received praise from GQ, the Guardian, the Independent and more.
Fox’s new video for “Sweet Song” is an ode to his days as a busker in the UK and his late nights spent wandering the streets playing his songs for strangers. He was originally discovered by A$AP Rocky and Hector Delgado busking on the streets of London at 4 AM. He subsequently collaborated on five tracks of A$AP’s album AT.LONG.LAST.A$AP.
The track’s video finds him in a seemingly abandoned industrial setting with only his guitar and voice ringing out against the walls as he sings his love song to a distant partner.
“Sweet song is one of my favourite songs I have written so far,” admits Fox. “I am a sucker for a love song and I like this song because it has an upbeat energy to it whilst being emotionally profound. It was recorded in one take actually, just sat down with my guitar and played it.”
Learn more about Joe Fox in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time! What are some words you would use to describe 2016 for you and your music? How has 2017 been treating you?
Folk soul. 2017 has been a crazy one for world events, it’s been filtering into my songwriting I think.
Where does this interview find you today? Is there music playing in the background? If so, what is it?
I’m lying in bed. A fan has sent me a cover of my song “Autopilot” so I’m listening to that.
Growing up, did you always want to be a musician? Can you recall your earliest musical memory? If you weren’t an artist today, what else could you see yourself doing?
I had these odd visions of my future self holding a guitar onstage when I was a child. I always loved writing poetry. I became a musician by accident, I bought a guitar one day secondhand and I felt I’d found my calling when I began composing songs.
Let’s talk about your new video for “Sweet Song.” Where did the inspiration for this track come from exactly? How creatively involved were you with the video?
It was a location I had a gig at that evening. The backstage area of the Orr cafe in Birmingham, a lovely venue with a very warm atmosphere.
I understand that your latest single “Aftershow” is your first piece of music to be produced and recorded with a band. What was that like for you? How do you think it affected how you performed it? What was it like working with members of the legendary Dap-Kings and Menahan Street Bands?
I learnt so much, recording with such incredible musicians who live and breathe music, they find spaces in between the beats. The sentiment of “Aftershow” lyrically reflects a place I was in at a certain time, I captured how I felt at the time of writing.
When do you hope to release more songs and a full-length album of new music? How do you think the rest of your songs compare to what you have already put out?
I think you’ll hear a lot of different shades in the album. It’s a record with a lot of different textures – I hope.
How do you think you have continued to grow as an artist year after year? Do you find that what drives and motivates you to perform has changed at all?
No, I am motivated by the wonder of being alive. I really see the world as a beautiful place. It can be testing, but what matters is how we walk through the fire.
Who are some of your very favorite artists or rather, what musicians have continued to inspire you and your music? What musicians would you absolutely love to work with in the future?
Picasso. My jaw drops at the work he did. From a young man right through to death. Picasso one of my favorite artists.
What advice would you give to someone just getting started on this music path? Or even to a high- schooler who is thinking of becoming a singer full-time when they are older?
I would say don’t give up no matter what life throws at you and make sure you write about your personal experiences – as they are the most interesting for listeners.