Trevor Rebello Interview
Trevor Rebello releases Roadhouse Royalty
Alternative folk rocker, Trevor Rebello, has just released his new album Roadhouse Royalty. The Johannesburg-based singer-songwriter’s music fuses country, folk and soul with straight–up rock ‘n roll, and his new 12-track offering is a reflection of how far he’s come since his first EP, Slow Horses, in 2013.
“We really took our time on this album. I spent the past 2 years writing over 30 songs. We started in March at High Seas going through all the songs and choosing the final tracks that would make the album.” Says Trevor about his new album. I caught up to the man behind the music to find out more:
Hi Trevor, thanks for chatting to Dirty Pink City. You’ve just recently released your new album – Congrats! I heard that you took a bit of time with this album; wrote 30 songs over 2 years. How did you decide which songs to add to the album, and how is this piece of work different from your previous EP?
It’s a pleasure. Thanks for the support! I did write a hell of a lot of songs for this album. It was one of those things where each new song sounded better than the previous one so I didn’t really want to stop writing and recording. I also got a new home studio set up which allowed me to track pretty much every idea that I had at any time. It was still a novelty for me so I really got stuck in over a long period of time. I think I slowly started losing my mind in pursuit of creating the best possible album that I could create. When it came time to choose final songs, I had my clear favourites but I shared the music with friends and family and music-industry peers who helped narrow down the selection. Jacques and Adrian at High Seas Studios also played a massive role in cutting the songs down to 12 and then really helping me bring those album songs to life. I think this album is more mature than my previous work. I also think that it is a lot happier, more upbeat and more accessible than my first album.
Does the name of the album, Roadhouse Royalty, have personal significance to you?
I have always been fascinated with the struggle of the everyday man. The middle-class who get up every day and slog their guts out to make other people rich. What fascinates me most; is how happy, loyal and content these people really are. So for me, “Roadhouse Royalty” is about being happy and content with life. It’s about making the most of what you have but still working hard to achieve even more. It’s a shout out to the Kings of the Roadhouses all around South Africa.
So, I read that your childhood home was always filled with the sounds of Dire Straits, The Beatles, The Beach Boys, Bob Dylan, Motown artists and other bands from the 1960s. Who in your home was the big music lover, and are these bands still a big influence in your own music today?
To be honest, I think my love and passion for music came more from my grandparents. They grew up in the UK and have a massive knowledge of 50’s/60’s and 70’s music. The birth of Rock ‘n’ Roll as we know it. Being from a close-knit family, we would always have epic house parties where this type of music would play till the early hours of the morning. It still massively influences me. I like to think that you can hear Beach Boy’s melodies and harmonies and Beatles songwriting progressions on my new album (I’ll let you decide)… I hardly listen to new music. I’m constantly mocked for having a musical knowledge that doesn’t extend past the year 2000.
What else, besides other artists and bands, influence your music?
I have a real passion for movies, so movie soundtracks have a big influence on the way in which I approach my own songwriting. Outside of movies, I draw inspiration from people-watching and listening.
And what do you hope your fans and new listeners will take from this album?
I hope that they identify with the more mature sound. I hope that they really take the time to listen to the lyrics and understand the theme of the songs and where they come from.
You’ve stayed in the UK for quite some time, how is the music scene different here in South Africa compared to there? And how are you experiencing it as a solo artist?
I think that the rock/alternative/live music scene is just way bigger and better supported than South Africa in terms of fans, radio and labels. As a result, there are more venues to play. I think that a bigger audience and more shows allows UK musos to focus more on music which leads to a high quality product. I however wouldn’t take anything away from our scene. We have incredible artists, some die-hard fans and a hand full of fantastic venues.
Absolutely! So, do you have any live performances lined up for the rest of 2017?
Yes. Hopefully a couple of full band shows and definitely a string of solo acoustic shows mostly around Gauteng. I plan on touring a bit more in the new year. You can stay up to date with shows on all my social media pages. www.trevorrebello.com www.facebook.com/trevorrebellomusic
Where can we buy and listen to your music?
All online music stores.
Buy on iTunes https://goo.gl/rP1zee
Buy on Google Play https://goo.gl/FrGRgC
Stream on Deezer https://goo.gl/YhCEwv
Stream on Spotify https://goo.gl/1fcR4i
Stream/Buy on BandCamp https://goo.gl/qDxQJo
Stream on SoundCloud https://goo.gl/pSsfd8
Thank you for the chat and all the best for the rest of the year.
Thank you kindly! Happy holidays to you and all your readers!
Images: Justin Lee Photography