Nathan Smart on his latest single, and how he manages to do it all
Is there anything Nathan Smart can't do? The talented singer, songwriter, music producer, videographer, lighting designer, editor, colourist, & graphic designer ( the list goes on) released "You Ain't Got Me" this week and we sure are impressed. Read on to learn how he filmed the video clip in just ONE TAKE...
1. Hey Nathan, tell us about your latest release?
I think this track is something that a lot of people will relate to. We've all been in a toxic relationship at some point in our lives and 'You Ain't Got Me' (YAGM) is about building yourself back up. Then when that person decides they want you back, you are strong enough to throw it back in their face.
2. What goes into bringing a project like this to life?
It's quite a long process. Mid last year I was working in the studio and started forming the musical idea that ended up being this song. The initial writing, production and vocal recording were all done in that one day. Beyond that was the mixing process which I worked on with Jeremy Drakeford this really helped to elevate the song and create the massive energy I was after in the chorus. Plus Michael DeLorenzis and Michael Paynter from MSquared did the mastering.
I always do music videos for my singles, but for such a long time I was certain that this song wasn't going to have one. One day I was walking through a reserve near my house which has huge concrete tunnels. I've walked past them hundreds of times growing up, but this time the idea just hit me that I could put lights in the tunnels and then light them up individually like piano keys with the song. That was pretty much when I changed my mind on the whole video situation. I listened to the song a bunch of times trying to visualise what I could do with the lighting, and then chose the lights I was going to use and spent a week composing the light show to the music in Logic. On the shoot day we had so much equipment - lights, generators, cabling, ect. It was a 12 hour day from arriving on site to leaving, and we only actually shot for 1 of those 12 hours. We did a couple of takes of the video in one take until we ultimately landed on the one you see in the music video.
3. So you’re the artist, Producer, Songwriter, Videographer, Lighting Designer, Editor, Colourist, Graphic Designer (I'm exhausted) ... Do you get a kick out of being totally creatively free?
I always have so many ideas and a lot of the time other people don't understand what I'm trying to do until they see the final product. I'm across all elements of production, both audio and video, and I find that the best way to get things looking or sounding the way I'm imaging in my head is to just do them myself. For example I explained my idea for the lighting in the music video to a bunch of friends and even some lighting technicians. No one really understood exactly what I was trying to do, how it would look, and if it was even possible. On the shoot night when I played the track for the first time with the lights cued and in sync everyone was like 'ahhhh, I get it'. On top of that I do just really love and enjoy doing it all!
4. Do you think artists these days have to be able to wear multiple hats?
There is a lot more to being an artist than you would think. Today you need great writing, modern production, promotion, music videos, social media - and the more elements that you understand and can do well, the better off as an Artist you will be.
5. Whats your ultimate goal for this single?
I want everyone to see that I've grown as an artist in regards to sound and image but mainly forto genuinely enjoy the song/video. There's nothing better than when you know there are people listening to your music, adding it their playlists and sharing it with their friends.
6. Whats next for Nathan Smart?
I've had a bank up of music for a while now and have been waiting for the right time to release everything properly. I'm so happy to finally be able to put this song out, but YAGM is just the start, and my next release is much BIGGER- Stay tuned - that's a song I'm really looking forward to sharing.
7. How can we listen / download / and stay up to date with everything you’re up to?
My music is available on all streaming platforms, and the video for You Ain't Got Me is up at http://hyperurl.co/yagmvideo
Social Media, Instagram is always the first to know about new music - @NathanSmartMusic, and I'm also on Facebook and Twitter.