I salute you for the incredible work you’ve done so far; it sounds very promising! How would you describe your sound in three words for those who don’t know you yet?
Thank you so much for the kind words!! To describe in three words, that is not simple. There are huge amount of influences in the songs. And people are hearing what they hear from them. What I went for was to make music I like and that was the most important thing. And if I like it, someone somewhere out there would surely like it too. So to answer, the sound is the sound of my influences and I am influenced by Goth Rock, Post-Punk, 80’s with a modern twist. But that is only my opinion!!
You’re new to the music scene as “pMad,” yet you’ve been a member of bands like “The Suicidal Dufflecoats” and “The Greeting.” We’d like to hear about your musical journey from the beginning to the point where you had your own project.
Over the years I have been in bands like ‘The Suicidal Dufflecoats’ and ‘Starve the Barber’, always just practicing and playing anything that we thought sounded good and some did actually sound good. But they never went anywhere but certain parts of the music stuck with me. So over the years, I would record a bassline, a guitar riff, a synth piece, hum a melody or write a chorus but it never went any further. But with the pandemic, I finally got time and dug out the recordings for the fun of it and with new technology pieced the recording together and record additional parts to complete songs, ending up with enough to go further and finally to release. Amazing really, still amazed by it all.
So out of all the songs, there were different influences of course and some went the way of pMad and the others of more a grunge and pop-punk style are recorded under the band name ‘The Greeting’ with a great friend of mine Liam Martin. We are currently finishing of those recordings and have magic songs there too, just a different genre. Really looking forward to The Greeting getting its music out there too!
So pMad and The Greeting are both running concurrently, it was just that the pMad tunes were finished first. So a busy time was had in two years, plenty of singles and 2 albums.
Your band’s name is distinguished! I must admit that it dazzled me for a while! What does the abbreviation “pMad” stand for? I don’t think it has anything to do with “postpartum mood and anxiety disorder,” so based on how you write it, I took a wild guess that the “p” is an initial from your first name, “Paul,” and “Mad” isn’t a shortcut, it’s the actual word. But enough guessing; tell us the story behind it.
I spent a lot of time working on the title of the band, a grunge/pop-punk sounding band called ‘The Greeting’.
Checking out names previously used and I have always loved bands with ‘The’ in the title, ‘The Smiths’, ‘The Fall’, ‘The Cure’, ‘The The’, so wanted to be in a with ‘The ……’ – so came upon The Greeting, with the way things changed when the pandemic arrived, our greeting habits changed. So to pick a name for my solo music!!
If I used anything around where I live, if I put the ‘The’ in the title, it might end up me being called a lot worse than what was the title, ‘The B…..’ etc etc.
With pMad, the name came a lot easier, though people have decided their own meanings which is brilliant. I love what people have come up with – the ‘p’ stands for something that I am mad for? That Paul is Mad (which could be true)? pMad actually gets tagged on Facebook ‘Pakistan Military Accounts Department’ (I’d say they must be wondering where all their new likes are coming from!!
What have people here guessed I wonder? But boringly and that is why I have took so long to get this far……sssshhhhhh, don’t tell anyone….they are the initials of my full name.
Who influences you in the music industry?
Influences, I am influenced by nearly everything I hear really. I don’t like a lot of music but that does not mean it doesn’t have its good parts and fair play to people who make and create. I don’t like a lot of music but I am a huge music fan!! I will listen to anything & have my opinion on it and take from it what I hear and like. pMad is not for everyone and even many people and I get that. That is ok, I produce music for myself and find it to be great therapy, like these interviews. I sometimes can’t believe what is in me.
So influences are so many, from Tom Waits to Kate Nash, The Cure to The Smiths, Simples Minds to Dinosaur Jr, from Benefits to Bob Vylan, Public Enemy to Suicidal Tendencies. I love music that I love. And most people will be the same way and hopefully pMad will sneak into their playlists, cd collections, memories – the one thing I would love to hear is oh that is pMad, when people hear the first few bars of the song. Be recognizable!! Well that is the hope anyway.
What has been the most challenging part about making music while being quarantined?
Actually it was a huge advantage! No pMad, The Greeting with a global pandemic! Some may say another disaster of the pandemic lol!! Time is finite and I didn’t have much of it before to spend on the actual full creation of tunes. Technology and the world being such a small place now, it was actually easier than it is now, with us meeting, it actually slows the process and over think things. So being locked in my own space was a bonus!
How do you get inspired to craft new piece?
I have so many scrap pads of lyrics (no word docs) and so many little riffs and basslines in reserve that I pull my favourites out and try and complete. That what has been the aim so far and it has been successful in producing a full tune every so often for the first time in my life. So with an old influence through those recordings and what I like and have learned since, new tunes come easier that the first few. Inspiration is all around us, the happiness, the joys, the sadness, the destruction of us humans. I am a very happy person in myself, thankfully, I have a wonderful life, but it takes time and self-improvement to get to where I am personally and I think what I have learned in coming this far is coming in the music and lyrics. Believe in ourselves.
Can’t wait to hear the full album from which you released the two singles: “Who Am I” and “Medicine.” Can you give us some details about it?
Next up is another single ‘Broken’ which will be released on 4th April and hopefully it manages to be as successful as ‘Who Am I’ and ‘Medicine’. It is about knowing we are all ‘Broken’ in some form, so what!! Live your life as best you can and not live up to anyone else’s expectations except your own! Then a few weeks later the ‘Broken’ EP will come out on CD with ‘Who Am I’, ‘Medicine’, ‘Broken’ and another new song ‘I Am’, which a few reMixes, radio edits, etc also on the CD. Sort of closing of Chapter one of pMad.
Then it will be followed by the next EP ‘Horror’ and then the full album ‘Who Why Where What’ closer to the end of 2022. As a one man operation it is not simple to manage the releases, recordings, promotion, production, etc, etc. It can consume you, so I will take my time!! People would take a song from you every week, but it just isn’t possible to do and do that too!
But it is absolutely fantastic that people want more………..
Your music is inspirational! The message in your latest single, “Medicine,” is clear, but what is the story behind it?
No real story, just a realisation in myself and seeing how the pills (drugs, alcohol, gambling, etc) are being used (of course to cure people) to mood change people, sedate us, to bring us down to a level where we cannot survive without them. We all have some form addiction in our lives and addiction is not good. They have all their own reward, vice, alcohol, pills but when you cannot live without them (and I have enjoyed), then there is trouble. ‘Medicine’ is just stating the power is within us to get out of the vicious destructive state, as we are hurting ourselves and the people we love and what good is that!! I believe people need Hope and without it, life is very difficult. Hope is the Medicine, if I can do it anyone can!
“Who Am I?” seems like a self-confrontation between good and evil, and a befuddled listener isn’t sure which side to take. How did you come up with it? Is it paced based on a personal conflict?
There is a mixture in there with ‘Who Am I’, the visual effect of the video has put another context on the song from the original lyrics. Personal conflict with myself, I suppose yes. We all doubt ourselves, just human nature. And the bullies, the doubters, the naysayers will always try and do that to you. ‘Medicine’ where you have to believe in yourself, ‘Who Am I’ is asking the question of actually ‘Who Am I’, who do I want to be. Are you going to be bound by what others think of you and let them tie you down. You have the potential to be whatever you want to be but it is mostly You that is holding you back, by letting what others think of you decide your direction. It is none of their business, you be you. It does take a long time to find out who you actually are and then sometimes even longer, accepting it!! You are what you are, why change that. As long as you are not hurting others, you are you! The video of course adds to the tension and extends that to hurting people, are you good or evil or a survivor. I count myself as a survivor with a bit of good and evil sprinkled in there too. The start and finish of the video is a Post Mortem table after all that you see in the video, it leaves it open to interpretation as to who is on the table but to me it is the evil that is on the table. We have survived!
The two tracks’ lyrics are full of questions, indicating that you have an active mind that is continually wondering. How can you cram so many ideas into four-to-five-minute songs?
I love lyrics and stories and think Tom Waits is the master of it. And then the modern Video is absolutely brilliant at extending the lyrics to the visual. I love the whole overall effect. Matt Johnson and The The would be a huge influence in that way also, I just love ‘Infected’ DVD, visual, erotic, lyrical and so much more. And that was years ago. My mind is always active, that is just my life, no two days are the same and I am very thankful for that. I have a wonderful life, family, friends, people that support pMad and have just been so wonderful, amazing. Again the music and lyrics are for me and if I like hopefully others will. People will take what they take from pMad, they may turn off after 30secs and say it is rubbish, pMad is not for everyone. I have the same opinions on so many layers of music, but that is my opinion. Everyone has their and they are well entitled to it.
The tracks are asking you to ask questions of yourself!! pMad has asked those questions of himself already and has found the answers and they have been the saving of him. Hopefully others will too.
What additional plans do you have for the future outside releasing the album?
I did an interview for ‘Who Am I’ and I was asked the same question and I said ‘I have no vision really and just go with the flow’ as an off the cuff statement, next thing I am made out to be ‘Visionless’………with maybe I am but no that is not true, I have a plan, A to Z and the path is changing all the time. The vision keeps changing. As a new artist, act, whatever, I am learning each day. So the plan at the moment is release ‘Broken’ on 4th April and the others mentioned above and if people still want to hear more from pMad, then that will follow also.
So much is down to others, people liking it, people wanting it, people wanting more of it, though I would like to go out gigging but others will decide that too, we shall see …………pMad is here and hopefully for much longer. Plans are fluid.
Both of your singles show that you have a unique perspective on the world and that you want to leave it in a better state than you found it. That merits admiration! I’m confident that your music will stand out and have a positive impact on the people who hear it.
That would be an extra bonus. I do not want to sound like a preacher, I am no saviour!! But I know from personal experience that we have the power within and we cannot change the world if we cannot change ourselves. It starts within. Life is………………
Thank you so much for having pMad, hopefully your readers will enjoy and know a little more about Paul and pMad.