Artist Spotlight: Fold - Folded Waffle Artist Spotlight: Fold - Folded Waffle

Artist Spotlight: Fold

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Artist Introduction

What’s your stage name and where are you from?

Fold. We’re a music collective based in Leeds, UK. Most of us are from the North of England but Seth (our founder) is from New York. We also have a ton of collaborators popping in and out from all over the place.

What’s the story behind your stage name?

Two things. First, there’s the idea of bringing people ‘into the fold,’ which is about inclusivity and representing a diverse range of perspectives. Second is the concept of folding something that’s unwieldy or complex into a simpler, more manageable form.

Describe your musical journey in three sentences.

We look for ways to amplify humanitarian perspectives and critical reflections on today’s world by exploring the relationship between language and music. We incorporate many different voices and forms from poets to MCs to historical speakers into the music to make this happen. Similarly, with the music itself, a wide range of influences are free to mingle and do their thing; mainly hip-hop, jazz-funk, Brazilian (MPB), and psychedelia.

 

Fan Engagement

Share an interesting experience you had while creating your latest track.

This latest track represents a special milestone: our 10th collaboration in 11 years with the renowned and much-loved UK poet Mr. Gee. The crazy thing is, we’ve been collaborating for all this time remotely and have only seen each other in person one time back in 2011. Gee’s based in London and we’re in Leeds so although we’ve nearly hooked up and done live shows a few times, for various reasons — including the pandemic — it just hasn’t panned out. We did our first ever interview together last week for Shell Zenner of Amazing Radio over Zoom and that was when we realized how long it had actually been since we saw one another. So the process of making and releasing this track has been incredibly positive in terms of bringing folks together.

The other thing was that I’d originally sent Gee a demo of a completely different track. He then wrote the poem “Dark Matters” over that demo and sent it to me. I had an instinct to try another instrumental track that we’d finished recently, and it was one of those moments where everything just fell into place. There’s this magical emergent property of the synergy between words and music that happens when it wants to. We live for those moments.

What message do you want to convey through your music?

“Give love, give love, give love. Love is all there is.”

 

Behind the Music

Tell us about a challenge you faced during production and how you overcame it.

We have this odd way of working with certain collaborators. Mr. Gee never records over the actual track. He goes off and writes something, records a bunch of different versions without music, and sends it to us. As we alluded to earlier, there was an awkward moment when we received the demo vocal and tried it over the track that we’d sent him. It just didn’t work for whatever reason, nobody’s fault.

Rather than trying to pound a cube into a round hole, my instinct was to try the vocal over a completely different instrumental that just happened to be nearly finished, and it was one of those ‘match made in heaven’ moments. The music had the exact vibe that the vocal demanded and plenty of space to make it shine. From there it was relatively easy, although of course there was a fair amount of editing and restructuring to make it all work.

If you could collaborate with any artist, who would it be and why?

Okay, that’s a tough one. On balance, probably Jimi Hendrix because he was so open-minded and forward-thinking. I picture him being incredibly fun to jam with and to go crazy in the studio with. No wrong moves. A lot of artists that I admire greatly were also notoriously megalomaniacal, and perhaps rightly so. You kinda have to be uncompromising in your vision at least if you want to fully realize it. What I love about Jimi and his ilk is that part of his vision always included what other people brought to the table.

 

Future Aspirations

Where do you see your music taking you in the next year?

We’re finally back to gigging after a 3.5-year pandemic-imposed hiatus, so a big part of our focus is more gigs! We’ve also reached out to both new and longstanding collaborators to work on new material which is exciting. It is all very much about reconnecting with collaborators, audience, friends, and people in general. There is also an album with accompanying videos forming, and we did actually apply for a PRS grant to help make that happen.

I’ve [Seth] also personally applied for funding from the local council to start a music production workshop for teenagers in my area who couldn’t otherwise access that kind of thing. There’s been a lot of senseless violence around here with needs of young people not being met. That’s all made it through the first round, so fingers crossed.

What’s the next big step for you as an artist?

What we haven’t properly done since 2019 is properly work on an album all together in the studio. It has mostly been me [Seth] writing at home and assembling through remote sessions with band practices focusing on our live show. So that feels like a big step getting back to in-person creating. We are also pushing to make the live show bigger and better with loads of new material and taking it further afield.

 

Recent Work & Contact Info

Where can we hear/watch your most recent work?

Our website has it all: https://fold.fm/

What is the best way to contact you if fans want to give feedback or if other artists/producers want to collaborate?

Again, just hop on our website: https://fold.fm/contact-us/

 


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