NUVO: What about some new songs and original music? Got any for us?
HENRY FRENCH: New songs are definitely on the way. I've whittled the list down to 15 songs, and will certainly reduce a little more from there as I start recording real soon. What was intended to be another EP last year has turned into either a full-length album or maybe two EPs.
NUVO: How do you get your music recorded?
HF: I do demos at home, get together and flesh them out with musicians, and try to let the songs evolve on their own. It's a pretty long process, sometimes taking months to years to get it to the point where I feel it's ready to be recorded. I then try to turn over the recording portion to a producer or engineer, so I can concentrate on the performance. If done right, I like the studio and home for different aspects.
NUVO: How's the Indianapolis been treating your music? I'd call your style rock and roll, to try and not pigeonhole it too much. To me, rock is guitars, drums and good words.
HF: I'd consider myself a pop songwriter, the same way I consider Foo Fighters, Tom Petty, the Replacements, and Wilco all pop songwriters, and heavy influences of mine. At the core of all these bands are simple, memorable hooks. Ttheir delivery is just not in the commonly perceived "pop" vein. I love the honesty of that folk/americana/alt-country sound, or the simplicity of what a rock band used to be, and that's the sound that gets me described as Americana - which I'm ok with. The art of the 2 1/2 minute pop song, actually written and played by the band seems to be a lost art nowadays (with a few exceptions), and that's what I strive for. Simple, honest, intelligent and personal pop songs seem to be rare, regardless of genre. Although it's really tough to build an original music business in this town, these tenets of how I try to write are a big reason why I live here. Indianapolis is a great midwest town that, at it's best, can be simple, honest intelligent and personal. That's why Indy is my home.
NUVO: What have you been listening to recently?
HF: Recent listens? Gaslight Anthem, the Deep Vibration, the Damnwells, Lucinda Williams. Considering the current musical landscape, I'm generally excited by music I rediscover years later. Currently in my car is Pleased To Meet Me by the Replacements, Songs in the Key of Life by Stevie (Wonder), The Smithereens, Yankee Hotel Foxtrot by Wilco, and Will Hoge.
NUVO: So, musically, the next year means what?
HF: The remainder of this year is all about getting my little tunes recorded right. If I can get it done quick, the songs will be out at the end of this summer. If it takes longer, it takes longer. Life has a way of making it's own schedule for my tunes.