Singer, Songwriter and Producer El Strawb

Hi Strawb

Welcome to Humans of Weston.

We are delighted to have you here, so let’s get to know you better…

Firstly tell us a bit about yourself in a sentence or two…

Me Strawb – I am a Taoist [Taoism is an ancient Chinese philosophy and religion]. I make music, don’t know how but the songs keep coming!

I’m more of an aural sculptor and poet. I am a songwriter not a musician, my songs are stories, journeys, realisations shared.

My influences are my record collection which I have taken out and shared with all, as a DJ in Weston since the early 80’s – Holding the Alternative nights at Hobbits, parties at the beach and in the woods, plus raves in the late 80’s and that’s what my music sounds like!

Now a few questions:

How would you describe your music?  

Very original, very Strawb, very deep and very groovy!

Was music a deliberate career choice?  

Career??? No it’s a path.

What does your music say about you?  

Everything! My joy, my heartache, my wonder, my wants, my wisdom, My goodness!

What brought you to Weston? 

My Mother’s belly at 15 Montpelier, Weston-super-Mare. It was a home birth – Home movie available from the day, had loads of hair! https://www.facebook.com/100003761664862/videos/2203524819782885/

How has Weston been a part of your creativity?  

The people who passed through my life, through my music as a DJ in the 80’s and beyond and the Deep Spiritual community therein.

Where are your favourite places in Weston to seek out inspiration? 

Birnbeck rocks; the woods; the space; the hills around and my bath!

Marine Parade, with a view of ‘Beach Court’ on Beach Road, late 70’s

Has anyone in Weston supported or influenced you?  

I found I was always the one running forward with the baton, but then I have always been surrounded and followed by creative, spiritual musical people – Too many to name, but we’ll give ORCA a namecheck and give thanks to Dave Grier and Kevin Lloyd of BASSLINE STUDIOS in Weston for continued support. could bitch about some, but would rather complement Martin of Whitehouse Studios.

What advice would you give to young musicians in the town?   

Advice for Musicians in Weston? Tricky at the moment, but once life gets back to some semblance of normal, there are plenty of venues to play at (at varying levels) locally, but you gotta work at it. 

We’re perfectly placed for visits to Bristol and Bath for city gigging and in between there are a plethora of pubs hosting acoustic nights, plus Glastonbury is not far away to get your name known on the live circuit there – ready for the big Festival, or the small festivals – Godney do a great local one [https://www.thegodneygathering.com/]. 

The rest of it’s on the internet, send your music to internet radio stations, BBC unsigned [https://www.bbc.co.uk/introducing]  and Tom Robinson’s https://freshnet.com. Find the DJs that plays your style and send them your works too – many have their own upload sites. Obviously get on https://bandcamp.com/, then find a site like https://cdbaby.com/  to license your MP3s to the likes of Spotify, Amazon, iTunes, Deezer and beyond. 

But mostly, every time you record a new song, log it with PRS [https://www.prsformusic.com/], OWN YOUR MUSIC and finally – make VIDEOS and do short clips of the Chr for posting because the internet has no attention span! Also, write better songs than everyone else and believe it to be true when you perform live! 

Lastly – Smile!

What are you working on at the moment, or what is next?  

Well…

I’m preparing a new album – STRAWBOTAMUS for a physical CD release with lyric booklet. The album is already out on Spotify, Bandcamp etc. 

Just released a brand new song “I Am Undone” that fills me with joy, but will never make me a living. I have given up trying to save the world with my music and am now going back to where I began, just making music! I am about to start rerecording all of my best songs from my early days – they only ever made it to 4 track cassette and deserve to be heard. 

My new website is about to be launched. elstrawb.com [watch this space]. Need to make more videos and need dancers! I recently entered an Over 50’s songwriters competition ‘Talent Is Timeless’ with the Worst recording/performance ever of a song I only ever sing for Myself! I Can’t play guitar, I am not a musician but, I wrote a song on guitar and it only lives on guitar and it’s a magnificent song. It’s just a shame that only I know how to play it – albeit badly! The song’s called ‘(The) Why? (Wish)’.

Busy here on the next single – Didn’t Mean to write it, but I did and now it’s done I need to get friends in to make it fully Pop Worthy. Got first time singer Liz on the Twinkle Twinkle verse and a friend coming in on chorus, plus live bass and guitar coming soon, with more pew pews space sounds!

…But mainly, I don’t know!

You can also

Shop Strawb at https://www.redbubble.com/people/el-strawb/shop

Listen to Strawb at https://elstrawb.bandcamp.com/

Hear a podcast interview with Strawb below