Teatime Talk with Nath Brooks

In which I ask a musician some questions and have some fired back at me.

Teatime Talk with Nath Brooks

Nath Brooks is a singer and songwriter from Tamworth. At only 15 years old, this young man has just released his debut EP “All Out”, which shows off his powerful and distinctive voice and his own blend of soul, pop and rock. The EP was produced at Strawhouse Studio in the summer of 2015. Last week I caught up with Nath to find out what he’s been up to since the recording sessions and also some of his motivations, dreams and challenges that are driving this young musician forward at the start of his career.

Question Time

How’s it going and what have you been up to since we finished the record?

Well it’s been great actually because I have had so many opportunities since the recording for many different things like pub gigs, charity events, showcases, festivals and even Wembley Arena! I’m just really happy with how it’s going and I hope that things carry on the way they are!

What does it mean to you to write and perform your own music and why do you do what you do?

Well I started writing my own material when I was around 11-12 and I have just loved writing since so I have carried to write more and more to come up with new ideas. Performing my music is great as well because you get to see how people react to something that is personal to you and so you want people to like it. I will continue writing songs because I enjoy the feeling of ideas working well together and then getting to perform them live.

Nath Brooks

Can you describe the perfect Nath Brooks gig?

I would have to say that the perfect ‘Nath Brooks’ gig would be me performing my songs on a big stage with cool effects like sparks and lifting platforms! Having an amazing crowd is an obvious one because they are the ones that help calm nerves and make gigs so much more fun! It would be really cool to have other people to come on and perform with me to do a couple of their songs so I can share the moment with them!

What are some of the challenges you are facing at the moment and how would you advise other fellow artists facing similar challenges?

Well sometimes at gigs there are times that I may not me able to hear myself and so what I do is practise with a mini PA system at home and try to get to sleep earlier because your mind plays with you more when your tired! Since doing these things I tend to not have this problem any more. Another thing that pretty much all other artists will come across is a bad gig! Everyone will have a gig that didn’t go so well and so it’s typical for us to get down and lose motivation however I’ve learned that the bad gigs are the most beneficial because they’re the ones that you learn from the most and then you do better next time.

What has recording your music shown you about yourself and your music?

Recording my music has shown me how difficult it actually is to record an EP and now after releasing it, it’s made me want to work so much harder for my next one… and I’m actually thinking of ideas already! The style of music on my EP I would say is a pop/rock/soul/blues kinda style.

What are your plans for this year?

As for this year, I’m hoping that keep on getting the amazing opportunities given to me and the support that everyone gives me! I’m going to continue working hard and I’ve got loads of ideas for songs so I’m hoping to finish as many songs as possible after my exams! I’m just really grateful for everything that has happened in my music ‘career’ so far!

Matthew Cotterill & Nath Brooks at Strawhouse Recording Studio

Turning the tables

Ask me any random question you like, it doesn’t even have to be music related.

What do you love most about your job?

Making music is an incredibly personal and inter-personal thing. I love the fact with the music I produce that it’s very relational – I get to know the people I’m working with in quite a unique way and the fact that I become a part of their journey is a real privilege. For me doing a good job means bringing the best out in people and that’s what I strive for and when I believe I’ve done that or I am assured of this to be true, that’s the greatest satisfaction.

How long have you been working in the industry?

8 years in different capacities. I’ve been producing artists, songwriters and bands for 5 years now.

Matthew Cotterill and Nath Brookes What advice would you give to artists coming in to record their music?

Be well prepared but open-minded. In other words, be well rehearsed but don’t put your music in a box. Try and establish a great rapport with your producer before getting into the studio. Really make sure you’re on the same wavelength and have an understanding.

If you couldn’t have anything to do with the music industry, what else would you do?

Interesting question and one that I sometimes contemplate and then dismiss pretty quickly! At the moment I’m developing quite an interest in property, which is definitely a new and very different thing for me. I could also see myself working for some of the charities that I believe in and support regularly. Something like that which gets you out of bed in the morning and is really valuable to the world. On a side note, I haven’t seen anywhere near enough of the world – I’d love to go travelling one day. I kind of regret not ever being one of those cliché gap year students!!

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