The Century Band feat. Bobby Harden – New York Song [Interview]

Describe your sound in 3 words

New York Soul

Your new song “New York song” has a very positive vibe. Tell us a few things about your creative process

I wrote this song on the piano in my apartment in Brooklyn during some of the darkest days of lockdown in 2020, when a lot of people were leaving NYC and it seemed like even more people were kicking us while we were down, so it really is like a love letter to the city as cliche as that sounds. I started writing the tune with the blues changes on the piano and then came up with the ‘Man I love New York’ chorus and built it from there. NYC isn’t an easy place to live sometimes but that is part of the charm of the city so I really wanted to convey some of those realities of living here while hopefully spreading some optimism to New Yorkers about why I love it and why our future is always bright.

What do you love/hate about NYC

I love most all things – the people, the food, the music, the culture, the hustle. I hate the Subway in the summer. lol

Which city is the world’s music capital? NYC? LDN? Or..?

I’m not sure there is a correct answer to this one b/c there are so many inspiring places in the world to both discover new music and thrive as a musician but I’m a bit partial to NYC. I’ve also had formative musical experiences in New Orleans and Detroit so I highly recommend both.

Favourite album of the past decade?

Tied between To Pimp a Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar and Black Messiah by D’Angelo. Both records are works of art that will no doubt be looked back upon as classics. I was lucky enough to catch D’Angelo on the Black Messiah tour in NYC and it was INCREDIBLE.

Do you prefer writing music in the studio or performing live? And what would be your dream performance venue?

I’m comfortable in both settings although the approach is different for each. On stage it’s about performing and making sure I’m playing my best so the audience appreciates what’s happening. In the studio there is more creative space to try different things and see what works so you don’t have to prepare the same way, although trying things in the moment on stage is fun too. They are 2 very unique things that are special in their own ways and I love both.

Favorite music related film?

The Blues Brothers.

There is a great scene in that movie where the band is playing this like honky tonk barn club in the country and the owner of the club comes out after the show and says something like, ‘Well I owe you $300 for the job and you boyz drank $400 worth of beer so the way I see it is you give me $100 and we’re square!’ and Jake and Elwood immediately pack up and drive out of town. I’ve played a lot of gigs with club owners like that where driving out of town as fast as possible after the gig seems like the best option so it cracks me up every time.

Thank you!

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