We chatted to EJ Mann about his debut single ITS’S AUTOMATIC

Can you tell us a bit about yourself? Where are you from and where did music start for you?

I’m originally from Yorkshire, but now live in London. I can remember finding a 45″ vinyl in a cupboard at home that my dad had bought along with the local pub jukebox when I was about 8 years old. It was Little Richard “Tutti Frutti” and the second I heard it – that was it! What a track, what a voice, what was this??!  I guess that lead me to all the greats really – Sam Cooke, Chuck Berry, James Brown, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones etc, but I really got into guitars when a friend handed me a recording of Ocean Colour Scene’s “Riverboat Song”. I had just hit the drinking age and seemed to spend every minute watching bands at shows or trying to learn their songs. This kinda leads on nicely to my blog post below bud: https://www.ejmannmusic.co/its-taken-a-lifetime 

In three words, how would you sum yourself up?

Always VERY loud 

You recently released your debut single It’s Automatic. What does this song mean to you?

It means everything really – it was the first track I wrote for the album “This Is Nowhere” and was the catalyst for the whole next chapter in my music career. It was the first time I’ve genuinely written and recorded a song exactly how I want to. It explores the idea of us as a population being on autopilot and going along with corporate ideas and advertising and the way things “should” be done in life and to be totally honest, perhaps in the music industry too. 

Did you have any help with the writing and process?

Not with the writing process at all. (My long suffering girlfriend will occasionally hear a demo and give me the thumbs up or thumbs down, but apart from that it is a very solo process). I play all instruments and pre-produce everything myself. However, a superb chap named David Watts produces in a cracking studio called Chairworks (back up North near home) and really makes the tracks come to life. He drafted in a cracking drummer called Jake to help make the track sound massive and tweaks the dials to make it sound great (in my opinion) for radio airplay. 

What are some of your favourite things you’ve heard about the song?

The best and funniest are the Facebook comments from people who don’t like the songs: “Not another bloke with a guitar” “Get a new haircut” “Rubbish” 

Some of the nicer quotes come from fans: “What an inspiring story” “Your track has just knocked The Courteeners off the top of my playlist it’s that good” “Insane voice and songwriter” 

During my time as a songwriter, BBC Introducing have described me as their “favourite track of the week”. BBC Radio 1 have described me as “someone worth getting excited about”. The Yorkshire Post described my music as “effervescent rock and roll”   

What were some of your favourite gig stories from the world before COVID?

Playing with The Flaming Lips at a festival was very cool. Wayne Coyne asked one of our friends if he’d like to dress up as a 10ft inflatable Alien on stage (they love to dress everybody up and get fans on stage). Of course he said yes, but just as they hit the first track, our friend caught his foot on the drum riser and the air started to slowly leak from the suit in front of 20,000 people! I think somewhere I have a picture from the side of stage with what looks like a melted plastic jelly where an Alien should’ve been stood Haha!  

What is one thing you are not missing from gigs?

Load in and out for sure! Haha! Lifting heavy, lumpy equipment all in a rush – not fun. 

What is next for you?

I’m a strong advocate of the independent, DIY route in the music industry. I’m dedicated to building my fanbase and meeting them directly through my website and email list. I’ve gained some great friendships this way and love to hear from fans on a much more personal level. I’m often chatting via email and social media and feel it shows a genuine care for those willing to support me and my music. So expect more single releases and definitely lots of free music videos, Christmas giveaways and rewards for the dedicate folks who want to be involved. I’d like to create a membership program for the true fans too, so watch this space!  

How have you been passing the time in lockdown?

Haha! I’ve recently written a blog piece about this right here too: https://www.ejmannmusic.co/lockdown/  

Where can we find out more about you?

The website has regular blog updates:https://www.ejmannmusic.co 
Come and say hello on all socials @ejmannmusic 

Anything you would like to tell us?

Just to say thank you for supporting independent music and that all your followers can receive 2 free tracks direct from my website at: https://www.ejmannmusic.co/free-music

Well, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and check out EJ’s single, available on all streaming platforms now! I’d like to thank EJ for taking the time to answer my questions and wish him the best of luck with all his new music

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