Benjamin Francis Leftwich – When You Were Young
We love Benjamin Francis Leftwich. We love his music, we love the guy and we love that he came down to Exeter last week.
As well as playing a blindingly good show to a sold out crowd, including 2 songs played completely acoustically, he also found time to have a chat.
APFOS: How has the tour been so far, what have been the stand out dates so far?
BFL: The tour has been cool, it’s what I love doing and nothing else matters! Norwich Arts Centre was a lovely venue and the Oxford O2 Academy had a really good vibe which I wasn’t expecting because a lot of the academy venues are supposed to be a bit soulless and dull. Exeter seems lovely as well, I think the last time I was here was to play a show in someone’s house but I had a chance to have a walk around today and it seems really nice.
With your love for gigging and live shows do you find yourself imagining what a perfect gig should be?
I’m really excited to be playing Shepherds Bush Empire and Union Chapel in London which is an amazing old church and such a classic venue. But I also like small cosy venues like this one as well, everything is good in different ways.
How do you see the internet and blogs affecting you as an artist? Do you enjoy having things like Twitter and YouTube to push your music?
I don’t enjoy it, I don’t really pay attention to it, I like playing music and I like writing my music. The thing about the internet is that it’s really good for promoting yourself and getting your music heard on blogs and the like, but everyone has an opinion and there is a lot of shit that gets written. I’m lucky in that most people are nice about me but I don’t really know how to answer your question.
Well it’s quite common for artists to whore themselves out a bit to internet promotion but it’s good to hear that it doesn’t affect you as a musician.
I think you should use it for cool stuff! The main thing I use is Twitter and Facebook for sharing music that I love, and we did a covers EP a while back and it’s cool to do stuff like that and give it out for free. You can’t be too forceful with it, I hate it when bands are always talking about joining mailing lists and retweeting their stuff. A lot of labels will do that but that’s their job, I think for artists it should be more of a way for people to find out about you which can be a good thing or a bad thing.
Your recently released debut album has deservedly found an enthusiastic audience. How long did it take you to write? Are there songs that have been in your head for years?
Yeah of course, it was about a 4 year timespan to write it. Butterfly Culture was the first song I wrote, I always get a nostalgic vibe every time I play it.
And thus concluded a genuinely enjoyable chat with the hero that is Ben Francis Leftwich.
The show was really special, if he is playing anywhere near you then you have to make sure you go see him.
Buy the album for less than £5!