Insted We Smile | Cody Simpson interview
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Cody Simpson interview

Why did you pick up a guitar in the first place? What drew you to it?

I was drawn to the guitar ever since I can remember. My dad and a few close family friends would come around for backyard barbeques, and all I can recall is so desperately wanting to be apart of those jams. Most of my favorite musicians also are guitar players.

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Did it take time for you to learn how to play or did it come naturally?

I only ever played rhythm guitar growing up. Just something to accompany songs and poem I wrote, and some I wanted to learn. I didn’t start digging into the lead and blues playing until about 2 years ago. I think the years of casual rhythm playing growing up helped my feel and prepared me for the jump into lead electric playing.

Who inspired your current direction of playing? I heard you playing some Elvis rifts and you nailed a cover song of his while recording your new album. Is he an inspiration? Is there an element of Elvis on your new record?

I’ve made the jump into more guitar-orientated rock/blues. I love guitarists from Hendrix to Tommy Emmanuel, all styles. Elvis is one of, if not, my all-time favorite entertainer. I grew up with his records in my house and I’ve just dived back into his whole collection, movies and all. I’d say the record I’m working pulls from classic blues and rock influences like Elvis, but also from reggae, surf folk and more modern songwriting styles.  

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Can you share any information about your new record? When does it release? What will be the name and what is your favorite song and why?

I’m not sure yet. When I got signed up as a youngster I didn’t have a whole lot of freedom with music and releases/decisions etc. Now that I’ve started Coast House Records and am kind of my own boss, I can have my freedom and take the time I need to get it right. I’m still deep in the creative process at the moment.

Do you think girls like you more when you start serenading them?

100%. I try to keep it cool and casual most of the time, but sometimes I can’t help whipping out the guitar.

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You’re only 19 years old, which by any standard is young to have your own record company, which is producing your new album. Do you feel overwhelmed in any way with the commitment or are you really comfortable?

I feel pretty comfortable, I believe in my visions and I believe in my developing crafts. I know great things take time and I’m stoked to have started on my path young.

I know you love to surf Malibu in LA but is your favorite surf spot?

Malibu’s cool because it’s mellow and close to where I live, but I can’t help but miss any of the local Gold Coast breaks I grew up with!

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Do you get inspiration to play music when you are out in the surf and if so how does it help?

Without a doubt. Anything that takes my mind off of daily stresses and issues is always a conductor to creativity. Washing away whatever is blocking the flow and letting it roll. Getting out in the surf is a good release and usually opens up those pathways for me.

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Can you compare the rush of being on stage singing to people who obviously love what you are laying down verse riding a perfect wave that is pushing your capability as a surfer?

I would really love to know this.

I think so. Both adrenalines pumping for sure. You find those moments of harmony with the earth either surfing or playing music. It might sound cheesy and Zen but I find them both spiritual acts. Connecting to the earth and connecting to the divine. Anything that stokes you out!

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