Nick Schinder, part of the indie group, the Child, is an extremely versatile and talented musician, splitting his time evenly between Argentina and England. He kindly agreed to have an interview with Song Revelation, discussing his work with The Child, his other project Deep River Running and what inspires him in music generally.
Q: If you could use a tagline of less than 20 words to describe your music and who you are what would it be?
Singer, songwriter, keyboard player, guitar player, producer, world citizen, musical anomaly, genre deconstructionist, musical freethinker
Q: What is your musical background?
I was born in Argentina, so my parents would play folk and tango, while I was expressing my rebellion by devouring English and American music: Beatles, Queen, Bowie, Prince, Radiohead. I got a Steinway piano when I was 14, so blending classical with pop music came naturally to me too. Mix is my past and my future.
Q: How was 2010 for you?
Pretty good actually. I spent it recording a new album by Deep River Running (www.myspace.com/deepriverrunning), my last project, which I share with lyricist Jacqui Doherty. We expect the album to be released in a few months.
Q: Who inspires you musically?
Countless artists, from all backgrounds. Apart from the ones above (who defined my musical roots) I love and was influenced by U2, Neil Young, Queen, Aaron Neville, Aerosmith, Beck, Beach Boys, Björk, Cat Power, Cocteau Twins, Dvorak, Grieg, Elvis Presley, Genesis, Goldfrapp, Guns N’ Roses, James Brown, Stevie Wonder, Jeff Buckley, Joni Mitchell, Led Zeppelin, Michael Jackson, The Rolling Stones, Morrissey, Nick Drake, Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald, Nirvana, Pink Floyd, Rod Stewart, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Simon & Garfunkel, Soundgarden, The Doors, Yes, etc. Plus Argentinean legends such as Astor Piazzola, Carlos Gardel, Charly Garcia, Luis A. Spinetta, o Gustavo Cerati.
Q: Which modern day artists do you look up to?
Sufjan Stevens, Ron Sexsmith, Ryan Adams, Pharrell, Coldplay, Muse, The Raconteurs, Travis… It’s not so much that I try not to sound like them, but I actually try to sound like all of them at the same time!
Q: Is there anyone you would like to collaborate or gig with?
Any of the above mentioned would be a pleasure to gig or collaborate with.
Q: What songs are on your ipod at the moment?
Tons. But on the recently purchased list I’ve got “The Funeral” by Band of Horses, “Crossfire” by Brandon Flowers, “Guitar Man” by Bread, “Love You Better” by The Maccabees, “Gobbledigook” by Sigur Ros, “Dolphins” by Tim Buckley and…erm… “Nothing on You” by B.o.B. I’ve no principle but the pleasure principle when it comes to music. It’s not about genres, but songs. I can enjoy a great song in any genre.
Q: What is your creative process for creating a track?
It comes out of just sitting at the piano or the guitar and jamming a little bit. Some ideas occur immediately and effortlessly, some others require more time. But it’s always liberating and cathartic, and just beautiful.
Q: What’s more important, melody or lyrics?
For a great song, both. Although great music can survive with weak lyrics, but not the other way round, I guess.
Q: Where are you based?
I spend 6 months in England and 6 months in Argentina. Following the sun, as McCartney would put it. Although in my case that’s because I make a living out of playing covers, and naturally, I work during the summer season on both hemispheres.
Q: What’s it like being where you’re from?
It’s a sheer mystery! Not just to me, but to the whole nation. We are a nation of immigrants so a strong sense of identity doesn’t come naturally to us. Not that it matters much, to be honest. I prefer individual identity to nationalisms, it’s more interesting and close and real. I believe in universal affinity: I feel closer to a Malayan poet than to a conational City broker.
Q: What are you currently working on?
I’m finishing Deep River Running’s second album, and working on The Child’s fifth (my long time band and alter ego www.thechildmusic.co.uk) . They both are sounding great, so come have a listen!
Q: What’s been the highlight of your career to date?
I had the pleasure to play with Charly Garcia, which is a sort of Argentinean John Lennon. But, coming from so far, I guess getting to London in 2007, touring the UK extensively both playing covers and originals, or playing at The Marquee (like we did in 2009), a venue where Hendrix or the Stones used to play at and which we could only dream about when I was a teen living 10.000 miles from there, was a dream come true. The best is yet to come though, no question about it!
Q: What are you hoping to achieve in 2011?
As long as I can keep on doing music I consider myself blessed. If world domination comes along, it will be welcome too, though!
Q: Do you have any gigs or shows that you’d like to tell us about?
Only in South America at the moment, but we’re sorting out some for the UK soon.
Q: What do you do to relax?
I don’t relax. I’m never that stressed out!
Editor’s note: Nick Schinder is an extremely talented individual whose introspective melodies ensure that you can relate to every song. Hopefully, he’ll be doing some gigs in the UK soon. You, like me, should definitely go along and check it out!
If you want to learn more about Nick Schinder & The Child or just contact them, just follow the links below:
facebook link: http://www.facebook.com/nick.schinder
myspace link: www.myspace.com/thechildbarcelona
web page link: www.thechildmusic.co.uk