James Nevis


Singer-songwriter from Scotland.







What is music to you? What does it give you?

Music production came about in a pretty strange time in my life. I had finished university, started my career and was moving up in the world. The relationship of 5 years I was in broke down and we gracefully parted ways. I thought to myself "this is time to move on. Time to catch up with my friends and the people I care about". However, after 5 years, so had they. My friends, finishing their education at the same time as me, had left the nest and moved on. I found myself occupying my time playing my guitar more than I ever had before, and with it came an emotional outlet which had tailored itself to the occupation of feeling a little lonely, betrayed by skeletons in the closet and a bunch of emotional jigsaws I'd never been able to piece together before. I guess for me, music is reassurance that when things get tough, or a little scary, I have a way to deposit the way I'm feeling.

What is your music dream?

For me, music is a source of jotting down the things I feel and the things that replay in my head. I know I am not the only person going through the things I go through, and as cliche as it is, if my music sits well and brings some sort of sense to a situation then I'm doing what I hoped I would do.

If you could change the world - what would you start with?

Tough question. Not because I feel I don't have an opinion on this, but more than the majority of the things which are wrong with the world are dictated by the views and rulerships of the minority.

Which is the most memorable song from your childhood?

Personal choice: If you had a bad time - Alkaline Trio Parental influence: Rosaline - Thin Lizzy or Nothing ever happens - Del Amitri

Who are your favorite musical artists or bands?

Alkaline trio were my go-to band as a teen. I know just about every lyric of every song ever released until about 2010. Gas Light Anthem, again, a band I know most of the words too. And, of course, Biffy Clyro

What inspires you to make music?

Life. Things which happen to me. I make music for me, and anyone who can relate to what I'm saying.

What is the message you want to send with your music?

There are far too many. In a nutshell, enjoy the little things! Appreciate life as it happens. Solidarity is under-rated and commercial pushing can be ignored. Bad things happen, but so do good things. Appreciate what you love and make sure you make the most of it because everything has an expiry date.

How do you feel when you perform in front of an audience?

Terrified... to start with. Every single time. There have been times I've played in front of a few family members and I would rather walk barefoot through the Arctic. Yet, I do it without fail. And once I get going, things start warming up and the enjoyment and buzz kicks in.

How do you see the musicians’ reality nowadays? What could be improved?

Perspective is important. Not because you shouldn't dream big, but because you shouldn't grudge the fact that you're still working to get where you want to be. The ride is everything! I think people get caught up in trying to become a "pop star" that they forget to enjoy the experience. When someone tells me, in a pub, they came to the pub because they saw my set a few weeks ago, I am genuinly thrilled.

What do you think of Drooble?

I'm new to Drooble. The idea is solid, however, not completely sure of the monetization strategy given the lack of ads and no ability for purchasing currency. I'd like to think that, whatever the method is, isn't invasive to the artists otherwise it becomes a redundant platform. It appears to be a more mature MySpace, with more emphasis on the creation of music, rather than generating dozens of teen fans.

What frustrates you most as a musician?

The transition from analogue to digital and how it has slowly destroyed artist talent and placed the production as the real workhorse. As conductive as it is - without digital, I could never have started recording from home due to funds and knowledge - but more in the sense of musical direction.

Do you support your local scene as a fan? How?

Not as much as I should, nor as much as I would like to. Daily commitments dictate the amount of free time I have, and that free time is usually spent travelling to see friends or creating my own music.

What qualities should a musician nowadays have in order to get their music heard by a larger audience?

Consistency. Things don't happen overnight. The audience is everything, online and offline. I am guilty of spending too much time writing and recording music, and not enough time playing gigs, marketing my music, and engaging with an audience.

Share some awesome artists that we’ve never heard of.

Anything Alex Rainbird Music puts into his YouTube mixes.