fbpx
RUPERT COX

RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW LONDON ARTIST RUPERT COX

What made you decide that music is a thing for you? 

I don’t think there was a specific moment or epiphany, I don’t really remember a time when I wasn’t playing music. But the last 15 years it’s been spiritually a huge part of my life and has really shaped who I am today. 

Introduce us to you and your musical history. 

I started playing the violin and piano when I was about 5 years old, I don’t think I was particularly enthusiastic about either until I was about 13 though. I used to play in orchestras and string quartets as a violinist and learnt classical piano repertoire.

I started improvising at the age of 12 and it was so thrilling and unlocked a feeling of playfulness and expression that I’d not experienced previously playing the music of the great classical composers. I still have a great love and respect for that music and try and remain open to the influence of all the music I’ve learnt and have heard in my writing/playing.

What was life like for you before music? 

I don’t really recall that time as I was so young, but when I grew up and felt that I was consciously choosing to work on and play music there was a sense of empowerment and confidence that I hadn’t experienced before. 

What was the first song you heard that steered you into a music path? 

Some of the first music I recall were the hymns that were sung in church from a young age, they definitely have had a huge imprint on my writing style, the simple and earnest nature has always moved me a lot as a listener. I’m gonna choose “Tell out my soul, the greatness of the lord” 

Where do you feel you currently sit within the music industry? 

I don’t think I have the perspective to give an honest assessment of my position, but I’m enjoying writing and performing with other artists – both upcoming and more established across a range of genres, as well as writing/performing my own music. Technically I’d probably fall in the “emerging artist” category.

RUPERT COX

What’s the biggest thing you have learned from someone else in the industry? 

To paraphrase my friend the amazing producer Chris Hyson “Setbacks are inevitable, we define ourselves by how we choose to respond to them” I think it’s such a level-headed and ultimately a more realistic frame of mind to have then some idealistic idea that if we ever struggle then it’s a reflection of a lack of ability or something being deeply wrong.

Music, like any worthwhile activity, challenges us and gives us opportunities to grow, gratitude for those moments of difficulty is a somewhat counterintuitive stance, but the only way!

If you could wish for one thing to aid your career what would it be? 

I mean, if someone were to gift me a studio where I could record, produce and have access to all the most inspiring instruments and gear to work with whenever I liked, that’d be wonderful, but fortunately, I’ve got friends who have those kind of spaces – shoutout Lloyd and Alex Haines @basement10_studio 🙂 But right now, I just want to be given opportunities to work with artists I respect learn from others and maybe impart some of my own wisdom.

Do you ever worry about people taking things the wrong way or cancel culture? Discuss…. 

I mean i just don’t think it’s realistic given how diverse and numerous we are on this planet that we can expect everyone to hold the same opinions, whether it be in regard to our philosophy, ethics, or politics. I think the desire or inclination to condemn others often is a result of seeing a problematic or unappealing aspect of yourself in their actions/words which naturally repels us, so we feel compelled to denounce it. 

I do think that the biblical quote “first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your neighbor’s eye” can be useful when we become enraged about something someone has said, but also, I think there are certain ideas which are inherently harmful and promote division within society and if we are to allow these ideas to continually go unchallenged it sometimes feels like a tacet endorsement of the ideas.

I guess there are also degrees to which cancel culture affects an individual, if it’s inciting violence and attempting to bring ruin on somebody I feel that is not an attitude I can get behind, however abhorrent I may find someone’s ideas. 

What was the worst experience on stage?

There have been many a hairy moment. I remember playing in an orchestra in school where the conductor was so unimpressed and angered by the performance of a movement of a symphony that 3 minutes in he apologised to the audience and made us restart. In hindsight, it was pretty hilarious. I think it’s useful sometimes to remember “it’s only music” no one’s gonna be severely harmed or hurt by the mistakes we make! 

Tell us something about you that you think people would be surprised about.

When I was 21 I started training as a method actor, I got really into the craft and for a year I was dedicating my time and focus to that as opposed to music. It was the single most challenging and revealing period of my life, at times disturbing, at times illuminating but always thrilling. 

What makes you stand out as an artist? 

I am always trying to allow the messiness of emotion to permeate the music I create. As much as possible I want to let the unconscious take the driving seat and to strive for honesty and vulnerability within my life as well as my work! 

I hear you have new music, what can you tell us about it? 

I have just released my debut album “Searchparty” on Digital and Vinyl! It’s an 11-track album of my compositions, which I wrote and recorded in 2021, I’m really proud of it and I feel it represents as many of the areas of music that I love in a coherent and heartfelt way.

There is jubilance and joy as well as introspection and melancholy, it features some of my favourite artists and I’m so grateful to be able to share it with the world. I worked closely with Chris Hyson on the album and I think we achieved something really special. 

What was the recording process like? 

I wrote the skeleton of nearly all the tunes at home and then went to the great “Giant Wafer Studios” in Llandrindod for 4 days with an incredible team: Linus Fenton – Bass, Dave De Rose – Drums, Alex Haines – Guitar, Alex Killpartrick – Engineer and Chris Hyson – Producer.

We fleshed out and grew the arrangements organically from the initial ideas I brought and in some cases completely transformed and subverted my expectations – this for me is the most exciting part of collaboration. Chris and I then worked on carving out the most essential, coherent versions of the tunes in his studio, as well as adding some extra percussion layers with Yusuf Ahmed and features from Soren Bryce, Mohan Evans and Thom Gill. 

The mixing process with Alex Killpartrick was also key in shaping the album into the most immersive listening experience.

What was the biggest learning curve in writing the new tunes? 

The tunes which “come out naturally” are usually the manifestation of all the work and struggle of trying to write things that resonate and all the hours spent studying and listening to music. 

Would you change anything now it’s finished? 

No, I think it represents honestly where I was when making the record. I am proud and excited about it!

Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?

I’m working on an album with my good friends Alex Haines and Chris Hyson. I’ve been recording another album which I’m also working on, which will feature me as a vocalist for the first time.

FOLLOW ON INSTAGRAM

MORE RGM INTERVIEWS HERE

THE RGM PODCAST