New South African Music: Stanley June [Interview]

Stanley June

Stanley June Releases Maps & Minutes

…It has been quite a big growing experience for me; not only as a musician, but also as a producer and a songwriter…” – Stanley June

A few weeks ago, Stanley June released fourteen brand-new tracks, including two bonus acoustic tracks, on his brand new album Maps & Minutes. This release follows Stanley June’s debut album, Imitating Art, in 2013, which delivered numerous radio singles and favourable responses from critics and music lovers.

I caught up with the man behind the music to talk about the album:

Hi! Thanks for chatting to DPC. Since this is your first chat with DPC, please give my readers some background; where are you from, when did you start making music, etc.?

Thanks for taking the time to chat to me! I’m a solo rock artist from Johannesburg. I picked up the guitar at age 13 and fell in love with music. I’ve been performing in bands and productions since 2007 and I’ve been pursuing my solo career for the past 5 years now.

So, you recently released your second album, Maps & Minutes, congrats! Tell me about the project – Who worked with you on it and what is the title about?

The title track on the album, Maps & Minutes, refers to the way we choose to spend our time, where we want go moving forward and in whose company we plan to do so. Andy Maritz played the drums on the album, Paul Loots a few of the songs’ guitars and Jake Odendaal produced two songs and mastered the album. The rest of the instrumentation and mixing was done by me and I also wrote all the songs.

And how is it different from your debut album, Imitating Art (released about 4 years ago)?

I think my sophomore album shares certain characteristics of Imitating Art, but it’s quite different. I’ve learnt a lot over the last few years and I feel that I captured that growth while writing this album. So I think it’s a much more accurate representation of my sonic identity.

Take me through the process of writing and recording new music.

Well, this is something that is almost never the same for me. Some of the songs on the album I had finished writing entirely either on acoustic guitar or piano and some of them I kind of pieced together in studio. Sometimes what you have in mind completely changes once you start laying the tracks down and tend to take on a whole new life. Every song has its own story to tell and journey of its own.

Stanley June Music

Who would you say was the biggest influence/s for this album?

As far as writing goes, I’ve always had a great appreciation for classic rock music. The likes of Meat Loaf, Aerosmith, etc. So I aim to manifest that style of lyrics and storytelling into a more modern rock sound.

You also released some music videos for some of the tracks on the album. How do you choose which tracks to produce videos for, and how do you decide on a concept for it?

I’ll usually play the songs to a few people in order to establish which songs are most relatable and then try and come up with a concept that captures the message of the song. I love the video production side of the music industry and often create the music videos myself, or work very closely with videographer friends of mine. I’ve released music video for “Define Love”, “Never Let Me Go” and “Holding On” on this album, and there will be more released in the nearby future.

And, since the release, which track has been the most popular? And which is your favourite?

“Holding On” has been very well received and is gaining traction on radio airwaves. As for the online platforms, “Different Eyes” and “Southern Sky” seem to be some favourites. It hard to pick a personal favourite, but “Phantom In The Fog” is definitely a fun one to perform live.

Stanley June

Do you have any plans to take your music to international audiences? Perhaps an international tour is on the cards?

I would definitely like to do that in the nearby future. I’ve identified a few possibilities, so it’s just a matter of time and getting all the resources in place.

Definitely! So, where can we see you perform next around SA?

I’ll be doing a solo acoustic show at Milk Bar in Rosebank on the 19th of October. People can just keep an eye on my social media for more gig dates to be announced soon.

And where can we listen to your music online?

Everywhere! iTunes, Deezer, Spotify, Google Play etc. and hard copies of both albums are available for purchase on my website, www.stanleyjune.com, as well as at gigs.

Finally, what are your plans for the rest of 2017 and the future?

In short: More gigs, more videos, more music.

Thanks, and looking forward to your future music!

Thanks for the chat!

 

Listen to Stanley June’s debut album now on: iTunes, Spotify, Deezer, Amazon, Google Play.

Images: Schutte Photography

 

 

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