Interview - Scott O'Hara

Scott O'Hara is a singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist based in Sydney, Australia and Bath in the United Kingdom. He plays the guitar with the mixed-ability BathTub Orchestra. Let's have a chat with him asking him about his music.

Hi Scott and welcome to this interview. Tell us about your latest release, Zeroes and Ones.
It’s a single that explores the sense of isolation and disconnection we can feel as a result of communicating through electronic devices - especially during the recent lockdowns

How would you describe the sound of Zeroes and Ones?
It's a classic rock style tune with a groove, I was aiming for a Cheap Trick meets Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers kind of sound.

Speaking of the Heartbreakers, legendary drummer Steve Ferrone played on your song. How was it working with him?
In keeping with the theme of the song, Steve and I never actually met - our collaboration was entirely electronic. He laid down his part and it was so good that I changed the arrangement a little - his fill going in to the Bridge was so awesome, that I dropped out the other instruments including my favourite guitar lick to make the most of it.

What do you listen to when you are home?
I listen to a huge range of material including a lot of soul and funk tunes at the moment. I think that's the direction that I’m heading with my music, although I’ve also been listening to a lot of jazz lately too.

Your favourite live performance so far?
There are a few favourites I could pick including playing with Bubaca Diop, an afro funk band in front of 3,500 people in the '90s, or being the support act for my favourite singer songwriter Brian Kennedy ten years later, but my favourite is probably when I first played my song 'Clutter' and noticed the chef in the pub I was playing at stopped working and came out of the kitchen to listen - its very exciting when you see something you wrote connect with people as strongly as that.

Tell us a funny story that happened in studio or on stage
Where I grew up in Tasmania bands tended not to play outside the cities, but my high school band would play pubs in the little towns. One place we played at was only a 15 minute drive from the city, but they hadn’t had live music there in 25 years. We played and the crowd went so wild there was a fight that turned into a riot! The police came and closed down the gig. Luckily they didn’t check our ID as only one of us was old enough to be in a pub!

Your favourite albums?
My all time top 5 at the moment would be the first albums by Seal, Dan Reed Network and the Powerstation, John Mayer’s Gravity and Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue

A musician you would like to meet for a beer?
I definitely owe Steve a beer so I’d choose him for sure.

What would you ask for backstage if you were the biggest act on earth?
Good espresso. You can never get that backstage.

What’s next in your musical future?
I am currently working on my first full length solo album - 'Zeroes and Ones' will be on it, and that will be the most rocking track - 'Clutter is a slow ballad and the rest of the album veers towards soul, funk and other groove based music.

Giovanni Gagliano

Passionate about music I wrote my first article for "Given To Rock" in 2012, reaching now 30K global followers. I am also a musician, gigging around London.

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