Every week we’ll be putting a spotlight on the band or artist featured on YorkMix Radio‘s House Band Friday – next we chatted to singer/song-writer Dom Patrick.
Every Friday morning a different local artist is featured on the Breakfast Show with Ben and Laura. Want to know more? Check out the House Band Friday page here.
Dom Patrick spoke with Ben and Laura on YorkMix Radio on Friday, 5 February.
Dom is a singer/songwriter born in Lancashire but now living in York.
Dom has played festivals around the country, such as York’s Little Festival of Live Music, Greenside Festival and Croston Fest.
In 2018, he released his first EP ‘Brother’. Most recently, he released his second EP ‘The Secrets People Keep’ in January 2021.
Q&A: Dom Patrick
Describe your music style
I’ve never really been able to put my finger on it, because sometimes when writing a variety of styles come out, but I probably would say it falls into the category of singer/songwriter or Indie Folk.
When did you first start writing music?
I guess the timeline would be pretty blurry, but I probably started when I was about 13/14. I’ve always been a drummer, but there was something about song-writing which really appealed. I started off learning a few chords on guitar, and from that started writing songs. They were mainly about heartbreak and being a hopeless romantic, but have changed significantly over the years. I don’t think I actually performed an original song at an open mic till I was about 23.
What is your song-writing process like?
This varies quite often, but predominantly it normally starts coming up with a chord pattern of some kind. From this, I play the chord pattern or riff for a while until I get a feel as to what direction the song could go in. On my recent EP, there was a lot of open tunings that I used, so this was very much a similar process, but learning what chord variants worked well together.
Who are your musical influences?
The list here could be extremely long, but I’ll try and condense it into the main ones. My earlier influences were definitely the likes of Johnny Cash, Pete Murray, and Paul Simon, but now it is mainly artists such as Phoebe Bridgers, Noah Gundersen, Sam Fender and Ben Howard. I mainly listen for the lyrics in songs, that is how I can really connect with them. Performing in and around York though has allowed me to meet some incredible artists whom I take inspiration from. A few of these are Kell Chambers, Me Thee and E, JAYNE, The Howl and the Hum, Rosalind and Chris Helme to name but a few.
Which song is your favourite to perform?
This is a difficult one. I’ve not had the opportunity to perform any off the new EP cause of the pandemic, but I would probably say either a song called Brother from my first EP or She Moves which I haven’t released yet. I perform these with a cellist, Sarah Pickwell, in our band Wildflowers. She is an amazing player and the melodies she creates to the songs we write are beautiful. I never get tired of playing them.
What are you currently working on?
Currently with lockdown, it’s been a case of trying to stay sane. I am working on a few projects, another EP to follow on from my latest. I’m also writing some material for Wildflowers, but like pretty much everyone, I imagine we are itching to get playing music again. Apart from this there’s a few other bits I’m working on, but not sure where they are heading yet.
What is it like to be a musician during a pandemic?
This is an interesting question. I guess it depends on a few factors. I guess I’m in a luckier position than many because I’m employed full time, so I’ve not experienced a lot of the difficulties that many of my friends and other musicians have. I suppose there are a few ways of looking at it. At the very start, during the first lockdown, I don’t think I picked a guitar up for a good couple of months. I remember not having any headspace or creativity at all. Gradually, things have got better, I managed to write and release an EP, and changed the approach that because it doesn’t look like gigs will be happening for a while, I can focus on other parts of music which I never really did before. It does take a bit of pressure off myself that I experience when performing.
On the other hand, I think the way everything has been handled to some degree has made things much worse and difficult. So many people’s lives depend on income from live music, sound etc so hearing the difficulties that people have had has been heart-breaking.
What song have you currently got on repeat?
The End of the Affair – Ben Howard. That guy is just incredible, and his live performances are mind blowing. His lyrics and music are just spot on.
What is your greatest ambition as a singer/song-writer?
When I write music, it is an escape. I write how I’m feeling, or about things that affect me, or my views on life and current situations, so I’ve never really contemplated anything outside of this. I absolutely love performing, and if I write songs that people like/enjoy/want to listen to, or if they are something that people can relate to, then that makes it worthwhile for me. My recent EP very much focused on mental health, especially from a male perspective, so hopefully if I can make a difference to someone through playing or writing music, then I’d be pretty happy with that.