INTERVIEW: Joshua Cooke
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Today we introduce Joshua Cooke, an up and coming artist who caught our ear so we wanted to find out a little more. Todays interview talks about his music, his life and inspirations and more.
What sparked the initial flame of creativity that led you to make music?
The initial flame that lead me to create music was listening to the fantastic EDM music of 2013 from the likes of Avicii, Calvin Harris, Martin Garrix etc. The energy from the music just gave me such a buzz and the inspiration to create my own music.
Can you walk us through your approach to crafting a new piece of music, from the initial idea to the final product?
My initial approach is literally opening up my music software and playing around with some chords or a bassline. If i’m feeling the idea then i’ll progress with it. The best thing about music is that it’s your idea and you can be as creative as you like. Once I have my chords or bassline, I’ll start adding some drums and percussion to help the track flow. I always export the track to my phone and then play it through the phone speakers to make sure it sounds okay. If i’m not feeling the track then how can I expect anybody else to feel it? It has to keep me interested or i simply won’t carry on or finish the track off.
Many artists in your genre have a distinctive sound. In your opinion, what sets your music apart and gives it a unique character?
I think my distinctive sound is the bright piano in most of my tracks. Near enough all my songs that i’ve released feature a bright piano. Hopefully the more tracks I release in future people will hear the piano and say ‘this is a Joshua Cooke track’.
The music industry can be a complex and demanding place. How do you navigate and balance your own artistic vision with the industry commercial demands?
I try not to compete with what the current sounds is in the music industry because i think that’s unhealthy. My vision is clear and my focus is on track. I think you’ve got to be happy and confident in what you release and not be worried with the industry demands because you can very much easily fall out of love with producing music.
Could you give us a sneak peek into any exciting projects or collaborations that you have in the works, or perhaps a dream collaboration you would love to pursue in the future?
I don’t have any exciting projects in the works just yet, but my dream collaboration would be with Kygo and Lewis Capaldi for sure. Or even doing a remix for a very well known vocalist.
Creativity is a fickle thing and can sometimes be difficult to come by. How do you keep yourself motivated and inspired, especially when you find yourself facing a creative roadblock?
I always find myself with writers block and often find it hard to get out of. For me I just keep listening to music such as EDM/House/Tech house and even classics like The Beatles just to freshen my mind and try a different approach. Motivation to me is hard in music but once i get an idea going, there’s no stopping me which i find reassuring and refreshing.
As an artist, what do you see as the role of music in society and how do you aim to contribute to that through your work?
I feel music has a massive impact on society and helps people feel a connection and a bond unlike any other. I am a big believer in music healing the soul because in my eyes and heart, music does make you feel so good. I’ve always wanted to me people dance, that is simply my aim. To build a special bond that hits people in the chest and starts to get them grooving.
Are there any non-musical influences or sources of inspiration that have a significant impact on your music and creative direction? Can you give us some examples?
Mental health is such a big and important subject in life and for me music helps to reduce stress and any mental emotion i start to feel. Sometimes just sitting in front of a piano and playing around helps a lot. I sometimes find my self doing it a lot. For me that’s when heart felt music starts to appear because you really feel it in your chest while so many emotions are flying around inside your head. This doesn’t make you mad or insane. It makes you human. For example my last track My Life, i produced the piano when i felt miserable and quite sad. I looked back on many regrets i had but making My Life realised i have the power and capability to change that in future. So My Life was born as a happy uplifting and bright song.
Lastly, what can fans and followers expect from you in the near future?
My dreams are big for the future and I’d love to carry on collaborating with brilliant artists and hopefully some big named artists in future. There’s plenty of music in my files that are close to being finished.