Based in Glasgow, Scotland is F.V.G., a one-man project with an arsenal of YouTube videos. The first video that I saw was ‘Out of the Blue’, and the opening riff reminded me of one of my favorite bands, Brand New. This, of course, made me interested to interview the artist:
Here’s my Q/A with Ferdi from F.V.G.:
Briefly introduce yourself, and where you’re from etc.
I am an up and coming musician in Glasgow, Scotland. My name is Ferdi and I study at university here and my artist name is F.V.G. I’ve lived in a few different countries and am an all round multi-national person, something which I try to impose upon my music. I have been playing music for the better part of a decade now and become more obsessed with it every day.
In no particular order, list your top ten inspirations, even if they’re not musical.
My top ten inspirations are: Bob Dylan, The Doors, Seether, Iron maiden (from my childhood), Gentleman, The Beatles, Johnny Cash, Jimi Hendrix, Herbert Grönemeyer, Manu Chao.
What are your thoughts on the current status of the music industry?
I spent much time in the past complaining about the music industry and its developments, mainly the fact that many great artists are overlooked while other mediocre ones make it big. However, I’ve become pretty open-minded over the years and I know how hard it is to make it in music and respect anyone who has managed to become famous.
My main issue with the music industry is the fact that the industry dictates the people rather than the other way around. It’s not what people like that becomes famous but it’s usually the case that people like something or someone because they are famous. Sometimes you think a record label just says, “right here’s a new guy, you’re going to love him” and people just blindly do.
Are you signed to a label? What are your thoughts on that?
I’m not currently signed to a label. I’d love to say that this is out of choice but unfortunately the opportunity just hasn’t presented itself. I would love to team up with professionals in order to spread my music but I would never do anything against my beliefs and principles just to gain fame. It’s sad when certain bands “sell out” but I understand when they do. I personally write music for others and myself so that I can share my feelings, ideas and experiences in a unique way.
What would you hope people think about when they hear your music?
What I’ve always loved about music, what makes it the key element in my life, is the fact that it allows people to express feelings and emotions that they could never express in any other way. When I wrote Out of the Blue for example, I felt very unique emotions, as we all do in every day life. By writing the song I think I can show people what I feel and think without the sentiment getting lost in translation. Music is a means to many ends and that’s what I love about it and that’s what I’ll always try to achieve.
Have you ever bought an album for its cover? Which one?
Many. If I see a cover that I think looks cool, I’ll go for it. I think the last one was an album called ‘Food for Thought’ by David Fishel.
What’s one place/venue in the world you’ve always wanted to play?
I don’t think anything could be more awesome than playing in a huge festival like Rock am Ring or Download Festival.
What’s your least favorite thing about being an artist?
In a way, the constant fear of not being good enough. I sometimes worry that people compliment my music out of kindness and that nobody actually gets touched by what I write and play. It can be pretty intimidating if you look at the “competition” sometimes, but I’ll keep on doing my thing because in the worst of cases, I’m writing and playing for myself.
What’s your favorite thing about being an artist?
I feel tremendous joy just by listening to music and discovering new things every day. Music is the greatest form of expression and I love the feeling of being part of it. It can be stressful at times but if even one person comes along and tells me they really enjoy my music, it’s the greatest feeling imaginable.
In your opinion, what’s the best way for an artist to make $ these days?
I think the question in itself kind of demonstrates what’s wrong with the music industry. I think music is about so much more than money; I would chose a dedicated following over money any time.
I do however believe that in this day and age, concerts and merchandise are the best ways for musicians to make a living. The profits from CD sales are slowly decreasing as piracy and downloads become more prominent.
Who’s your musical hero?
I’d definitely have to say Bob Dylan. I think the meaning he brought to music and the way he uses music to express himself is truly amazing. He’s definitely gotta be my musical hero.
What advice have you received in your life that was priceless?
Luck only plays a small role; if you have skill and talent and you are ready to do anything to make it, you will make it. I live by this advice and hope it one day will fulfill itself.
Where have you always wanted to live, and write music?
I’d love to live somewhere like Los Angeles if it wasn’t so far away from my family. Musically, Glasgow is perfect for me; I like it here because of all the opportunities. Otherwise I’d love London or Berlin.
Do you have a favorite Beatle?
John Lennon. He was an amazing songwriter and an inspirational person; I think todays music misses characters like him.
Where do you think music will ‘go next’?
If I knew that I’d stand to be very rich. We’ve kind of been experiencing two movements in the past decades. On the one hand we’ve seen an ‘elecotronisation’ of music with the rise of Drum & Bass, Dubstep, Techno and all that. It kind of reflects the modern times in which we live. However I don’t see music becoming even more electronic, I think the other trend we’ve been experiencing is going to take over; old trends and styles are going to become popular again. You already see new bands resurrecting old music and old bands becoming famous again. I think we’re gonna re-live the 70’s and 90’s in the next few years.
Do you still buy CD’s?
Hell I still buy vinyls and tapes yet alone CDs. The last CD I bought was Food for Thought by David Fishel. I always look out for new music to discover and spend half my time in record stores and Oxfam Music. I think that hard copies of an album are much nicer than a file on a computer.
How much of a nuisance do you think it is for indie artists to hit new fans up on facebook?
Social networking is a great way to get a following. I think it isn’t much of a nuisance; people get to discover new music while bands get to find people who potentially could become fans. It’s kind of a win-win if you think about it. Generally I think that if people don’t like something on facebook, they shouldn’t use it. Facebook is a free service and people shouldn’t complain about it.
Worst decision you’ve ever made?
Musically? To rush in to forming a new band when the last one had failed and repeating all the mistakes I made in the past. Sometimes I’m too hyped and ambitious for my own good.
Best decision you’ve ever made?
Deciding to bite the bullet and learn to sing and start this solo project.
Have you ever had to make any sacrifices to be able to continue playing music for a living?
I try to balance my time between friends, studying and music, which can sometimes be quite hard. I almost risked putting my friendship with my former band-mates on the line when I broke up the band. It’s never easy to make such a decision but I felt it necessary, things are okay now but at the time I think everyone was a bit disappointed.Source: youtu.be