Trip Hemingway


Trip Hemingway is the name of a project, and not a person. It’s the creation of an amateur audio engineer out of Seattle, WA that grew up working for one of the West Coast’s large regional concert promoters. At the early age of 14, our amateur learned about live sound production working on tour dates for acts like Heart, The Beach Boys, America, The Allman Brothers, and many, many tours from the late 70’s and early 80’s. Based on his love of that era’s music, he produces purposefully retro sounding tracks using an interesting approach. He uses various session artists, most of whom function using reciprocity as a means of exchange. So, when a session artist works on a Trip Hemingway project, they get help from the project in engineering or producing something of theirs in exchange. With some pretty rare exceptions, no money is ever involved, and everyone retains their anonymity. So, you never really know who is playing on Trip Hemingway projects. In many cases they are pretty accomplished local musicians. Lastly, while the songs are all original compositions, the music itself isn’t ever bought or sold, or even ever streamed for money. It’s largely just for the enjoyment of the contributing artists. So, when you hear a Trip Hemingway song, what you hearing is real music made with no other motivation than the love of community and song.







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

Music is a language that can convey the purest forms of emotion. It has the potential to instantly convey what an artist is feeling to thousands of listeners in its playing. It allows us to all experience the same feelings together.

What is your music dream?

I think I'm living it. Just writing songs without having to worry about having enough money to live, or if I'll be able to eat today. LOL....

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


Which is the most memorable song from your childhood?

I don't think I can pick just one song. Fair's a cheese fest. I was raised on a steady diet of ABBA, The Carpenters, Burt Bacharach, Glenn Campbell, and the like. I think the coolest thing in my parents record collection was probably Neil Diamond.

Who are your favorite musical artists or bands?

Van Morrison is a pretty big favorite of mine. I love The Band. The stuff I listen to still mostly comes out of the 60's and 70's. That's not really when I grew up, but I just find it hard to beat. On the R&B front, Love me some old Marvin Gaye. The jazz influences include Dave Brubeck and Miles Davis (again, mostly older stuff...50's and 60's in this case). I'm a bit of a throw back I guess. I'm not a big fan of two chords songs.

What inspires you to make music?

Endorphins, dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin! We all get them when we know we've created something valid. I'm like that little lab rat that keeps hitting the black and white keys in the hopes that one of those pills above get's dispensed.

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

It varies with every song. Mark Twain once said 'write what you know'. I try to do that. I'm not good enough that I can fake anything and have it not show up in the work. It's hard enough to write about something that is real.

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

I don't perform live anymore, but recordings, if done right, are performances and I think that's what people want to hear in the recording. I think people want it to feel like the recording they are listening to is a live performance. I don't want to hear something that is locked into a grid and where everything is auto-tuned and perfect. That's not what happens in a performance.

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

I think this is the best time to make music that there has ever been to make music. There has been more done in the last 30 years to democratize music production, and distribution than in the whole of human history.

What do you think of Drooble?

Just getting started. Looks kinda neat!

What frustrates you most as a musician?

Head colds....wrecks the vocals.

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

I do. I volunteer at local theaters to help with production and run sound. Folks in my community know that I never charge for my services. Doesn't matter if I am drawing up charts on an arrangement, helping an amateur to record their new song, producing their single, or just helping out as a session artist. I've never taken a dime for any of it.

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

I wouldn't know as I don't really do that sort of thing. I'm not really even attempting 'to get my stuff out there' or to monetize anything. In my case, I'm not really sure what the point would be. I think It would just add complications I don't want.

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

Pearl Django - gypsy jazz here locally in Seattle. Bill Frisell - Seattle based Jazz Guitarist. Tom Esch out of Lynnwood, WA. Check out his track called 'The Game'. Great stuff.