Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Beth Hart has just realeased her latest album Fire on the Floor. Tomatrax caught up with Beth to talk about her music.
You’re about to release your latest album, what’s it like to have it finished?
It’s great to have it finished, but it’s been finished for a couple of years because I made it back to back with another record I did called Better Than Home. So it’s been finished a long time.
How will the album compare with your previous work?
Oh well I don’t know. I wouldn’t compare it but I’m sure other people will. Um, you know – it’s different, it’s a different group of songs than what ended up going on Better Than Home. I guess you could say Better Than Home would be a good album to play at night, before you’re retiring – or that Fire On The Floor would be a good album to play in the morning, when you’re just getting up.
The album covers some personal themes around what you went through when making your previous album, is it hard to put something that personal on show like that?
No, it’s not for me at all – and I really don’t know why. It’s just I feel comfortable being vulnerable.
You’ve also said how you wanted to get the songs on this album “get born quick” was it hard to finish the album as quickly as you wanted?
Well, we finished the album in 3 days – so that’s pretty quick. Better Than Home was finished in 7 days – now that doesn’t include the mixing of course, so before I started mixing Better Than Home I was already in the studio working with Oliver Leiber on Fire On The Floor.
We had a couple of weeks of pre-production where we just got together and talked about songs and then he put together a great band. And it was 3 days – 3 days done, and then he did some mixing after.
You’ve received a lot of critical acclaim from your back catalogue, did this make you feel any pressure when putting this album together?
No – I don’t feel pressure about that kind of thing. The only time I feel pressure is like when I’m going on the road and I want to do a really good tour, and you know, my voice starts getting tired let’s say 4 or 5 weeks in. Then I feel a little bit of pressure because the live show is very very important to me and the band – and we really want that audience to get the very best of us and make them feel great.
But when it comes to writing and recording, I mean not really – it’s like I think the only time I would feel pressure in the studio is if I didn’t trust the producer and at this time in my life, I don’t go and make a record unless I totally trust the producers – so no, I don’t really think of pressure when it comes to writing or recording. And also, I have an awesome record company who just totally backs me and believes in me and whatever it is I want to do creatively, they’re there – on board 100% so I guess that’s why I don’t feel pressure like that.
When writing –what comes first, the words or the music?
The music always comes first for me. Rarely do I get a lyrical idea before.
Do you ever listen to your own music?
I mean you know, I spend so much time listening to it when I’m writing it and then once I make a record of it, or I’m in the studio I don’t listen to it thoroughly while the mixing process is happening because I do get very anal about a mix being just right. And then once that mix is finished, I pretty much don’t, the only time I’ll go back and re-listen is if it’s been a while since I’ve done that song and then I’ll want to make sure I go back and listen properly so that way when I go into rehearsal with my band, you know – I’m not all over the place, but that’s about it.
Now that the album is just about to be released, what do you have planned next?
Nothing in particular you know –we’re just getting ready to start promo in Europe – and then I’m hoping to do a trip to The Canary Islands – and then there’s going to be lots of touring – Germany, the UK, Holland, France, Belgium – and a show in Morocco. And of course – I’m coming back to Australia for Blues Fest next year too, which I’m really excited about.
I’ve been thinking about a new wave of writing too and gearing up for letting that just kind of happen, and enjoying life – taking care of myself – that’s it.
Thanks for talking with me.
Chech out Beth Hart’s website to find out more!