“Most songs are either about falling in love or breaking up, I wanted to write about what happens in the middle…” - hmv.com talks to Jack Savoretti
His new album Sleep No More is out now (you can preview and purchase it on the right-hand side of the page) and we spoke to Jack Savoretti about how he made it...
When did you start work on the songs for Sleep No More?
“The first single ‘When We Were Lovers’ was a track that I actually wrote at the end of recording the last album and it almost made it on there, but I didn’t feel like it had all that much to do with the other songs that were on there, so I kept it aside and it became the pillar of this record. The album really revolved around that song and what it made me realise.”
How did you want to move on from Written In Scars?
“I never sit down and plan, things evolve in their own way. This is quite a personal record, ‘When We Were Lovers’ is quite a melancholy track, it’s looking back at something, how carefree you once were, so I thought that was setting things up for quite a sad record, but in fact it was the opposite, it made me appreciate how much better my life is now and how excited I am about where I’m going, so the album became a celebration. Most songs are either about falling in love or breaking up, I wanted to write an album about what happens in the middle.”
You worked with a variety of producers, including Mark Ralph (Years and Years/Take That), Sam Dixon (Adele), Matty Benbrook (Paolo Nutini), Cam Blackwood (George Ezra) and Steve Robson (James Bay, John Newman), what did they bring to the sessions?
“A few of them had worked with me on the last record, so it was more a case of going into the studio with mates mostly. I did want to add something new, for me albums are like putting together a football team, I feel like the last album got me into the Premier League, but if we’re going to stay here and dream about the Champions League then you need to add something to freshen things up. So Cam Blackwood and Mark Ralph really added something, I like mixing things up, I never want an album that’s 12 songs that sound the same.”
You spoke about this being an album about “the bit in the middle” in relationships, is that where all the lyrics come from?
“100%. It’s the good, the bad and ugly of a relationship. Even the song order fits into that, the songs go from up and energetic to down in the dumps and back again, it’s a journey.”
There’s probably a good reason the bit in the middle gets overlooked, did you find writing about it challenging?
“Absolutely. I find it so much easier to write sad songs than happy songs, and capturing daily life and the joy in the mundane is particularly difficult. I’ve always loved people like Paul Simon and Bob Dylan who do exactly that, they don’t focus on the grand moments in life they focus on the sidewalk, on the buildings you see every day, finding beauty in what you take for granted.”
When did you settle on the title?
“After I wrote the song. I’d been joking about not sleeping, I’m a father of two children and I’m always on the road, so a lot of sleep is not really an option, I feel like I haven’t slept in five years, you don’t when life gets going.”
Is a year of touring all in place to promote this LP then?
“It depends on how the album does. But I do know that we’ll be going to plenty of new places, the US, Australia and a lot of Europe.”
Finally is there already a song written to kickstart the next album?
“There is. There’s a song at the end of this album called ‘Lullaby Loving’ and I think that’s a pretty good indication of where I’ll be going next…”