Andy Thomson has been playing solo and in various line-ups as Fuzzystar for years; starting in Edinburgh, with a stint in London, before returning to Scotland. The band name comes from an appreciation of the bands Big Star and Mazzy Star. Now, Fuzzystar is made up revolving cast of whoever is available at the time, hence the name – a star which looks like one star but is made of lots of other stars.
Catch Fuzzystar live at the following dates:
- 21st April – The Betsey Trotwood, London – Tickets
- 4th May – The Hug & Pint, Glasgow – Tickets
- 6th May – Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh – Tickets
Telegraphing, the forthcoming album from Fuzzystar, is out on 28th April 2017 via Satellite Sounds.
In this interview spotlight, we chat with Andy about influences, navigating the digitized music world, the new project and more.
Full Q&A along with links and a stream of High Friends can be found below.
Let’s dive a little deeper into You, the artist and your music. What attracted you to this genre(s) or style(s)?
I guess it wasn’t really a conscious decision more just a reflection of the kind of music I like and my record collection. I’ve always really liked melody and lyrics that told a story or felt personal so it’s all naturally filtered through.
How long have you been creating and sharing your music with the public?
Off and on over the last 10 years, before playing more properly as band in London for a spell then back in Edinburgh… about 6 years of ‘proper gigs’.
Who or what influences your playing and/or writing? Also, what motivates you to keep going?
Alot of the songs are snapshots from times, places or moments in my life. Some of them are true, others are a mix of experiences or different times pulled together. I enjoy putting some of those songs down, and it feels like a bit of a release. Except for the times I’m struggling to finish something, I usually really enjoy the process. I can’t imagine not writing songs now.
Were you trying to accomplish anything specific on this new project? Creatively or otherwise?
Firstly, to get an album done! To record some of these songs that had been in live shows for a wee while. And to make a record that you might want to experience as a whole. I love the 2 minute pop song and bubblegum singles but nothing beats having an album that you like that you know you want to listen to. So to try and make the first one of those that I could, and see how it turned out. Hopefully good enough to be enjoyable and also capture how good I thought the band were at the time.
What was the last song you listened to?
The Four Tops, a whole album on vinyl. It was Saturday night soul music.
Which do you prefer? Vinyl? CDs? MP3s?
I like them all but I guess I am mostly still drawn to the physical objects for the music I love. I still buy cds for in the car and love listening to them driving around and going for road trips where you just loop a new album over and over as the soundtrack! I think the canvas of 12” vinyl for a beautiful piece of art is unsurpassed in music so far, but I only recently had the space to get my record player out and working again so I’m rediscovering all my old records. It’s completely unscientific but there are some that just feel right to me playing them on vinyl – Neil Young for instance.
How about this one…. Do you prefer Spotify? Apple Music? Bandcamp? Or something else? Why?
I use them all, in varying degrees they’re all good in their own ways and for convenience. I still tend to buy physical though rather than the streaming option, especially when it’s an a smaller independent artist, it feels like streaming their music isn’t really going to help them pay for making that next album.
Other than the digital era overwhelming us with access to an abundance of music, what are one or two of the biggest challenges you face when trying to attract listeners to your music?
I guess it’s the fact there are so many people out there, so much new music being released all the time. At the same time you’re meant to be across social media and putting 10x the time into your online stuff and generating other ‘content’ beyond making the music itself or improving your craft. I’m naturally a bit introverted so it feels a bit lame to be pushing yourself all the time on social media. I’d much rather say it once, leave it out there and let people decide for themselves but it doesn’t really work like that, it just disappears under the tidal wave of everything else, hehe.
Do you gig, tour or perform? Do you ever live stream? Where can music lovers see you live?
We’re currently booking quite a few shows for this year and getting out for some festivals too. We keep talking about doing some online stuff/streaming as a band, so we’ll probably do something over the summer.
Where is the best place to connect with you online? Discover more of your music?
Our website http://www.fuzzystar.co.uk and our newsletter is where we try and announce all our shows first. We’re on all the usual social medias aswell…