Since winning the BBC Young Folk Award back in 2009, singer-songwriter Megan Henwood has received acclaim from the likes of The Guardian and Uncut, and played played numerous festivals including Glastonbury, Cambridge Folk Festival and Secret Garden Party.
Now, following the success of last year’s album The River, Henwood has released a spellbinding new single. We caught up with her to find out more…
Hi Megan! Welcome to Get In Her Ears! Can you tell us a little bit the band?
Hey, thanks for having me! The full band live set up is a four piece; myself, Pete Thomas, Jacob Stoney and Fred Claridge. We have double bass, drums, synths, pianos, electric and acoustic guitars and lots of vocals! It’s been great fun bringing the studio albums to life with these fantastic musicians.
What initially inspired you to start creating music?
I’ve loved words and writing from an early age and as I became more confident in playing instruments and singing, the two sort of melded together and became a powerful outlet for me. Lyrics will always be the starting point of inspiration, but I get really excited about experimenting with production and instrumentation to keep the sound evolving.
We’re loving the new single ‘Join The Dots’ – what’s it all about?
It’s about how retrospectively we can recall the same story but interpret it completely differently – sometimes in an unrealistically positive light, as if to save ourselves from the honest truth.
You’ve been compared to the likes of Daughter, but who would you say are your main musical influences?
I am flattered by this comparison! I think my most prominent influences tend to be more lyrically based music – Elliott Smith has always been a huge inspiration to me, as well as Joni Mitchell, Sixto Rodriguez and Anais Mitchell. Musically, I listen to a huge range of genres which I think has filtered into the production of my own material.
How is your local music scene? Do you go to see lots of live music?
Oxford is pretty great for live music. There are some good venues and an eclectic mix of events and gigs going on. The standard of local bands/musicians is really high and audiences and communities are supportive, so it’s been an inspiring place for me to settle over the last few years.
And what can fans expect from your live shows?
I always try and play as honestly and sincerely as I can. Also, because a lot of my songs are pretty dark I try and lighten the mood a little in-between tunes! The band show is so much fun, and we draw out some of the arrangements which is something I’m not able to do on solo shows.
As we’re a new music focused site, are there any other new/upcoming bands or artists you’d suggest we check out?
You must go and listen to Be Good right away. Stop reading this and go listen. You’ll thank me later! Also – check Jack Harris out – beautiful songwriter.
And how do you feel the music industry is for new artists at the moment – would you say it’s difficult to get noticed?
Well, there are pros and cons to the internet and how it opens up the world and audiences – it makes for many more opportunities for independent artists to get their music heard, but it also can be overwhelming. I fully recognise that it’s a powerful tool, but it also terrifies me.
Finally, what does 2018 have in store for Megan Henwood?
More gigs and touring with the band and the new album – more writing and also a few mad projects!
Huge thanks to Megan for answering our questions!
‘Join The Dots (Ash Howes Mix)’ is out now via Dharma Records.