Richard Walters Interview


Richard Walters is a 29-year-old singer who has been performing for over 10 years. He has sculpted his own brand of soft falsetto that cuts through his songs with power and emotion. His music has appeared in some of Americas biggest T.V. shows like ‘Grey’s Anatomy’, ‘CSI: Miami’ and ‘So You think You Can Dance…America’.

His latest album Regret Less was released in October 2012 and represents a work of real beauty and accomplishment.

We managed to pin him down for a few moments whilst in between a tour and more shows. He kindly answered a few questions.

You’re originally from Oxford. How connected to the towns’ music scene do you feel?

When I was learning to love music, Oxford was an amazing city to be in. So many remarkable bands to see – the opportunity to literally rub shoulders with Supergrass and Radiohead at gigs and in pubs on the Cowley Rd, it was an exciting time. I think the scene in Oxford is always going to be healthy and new bands are forever popping up. As an artist I’ll always feel like it’s a hometown gig playing in Oxford, and I’ll always receive support from the scene there.

You recently moved from Oxford to London. Was that a tough one?

I spent my whole life saying I’d never move to London – I suppose it felt like a bit of a cliché coming from a small town like Oxford; turn 18, move to London. I’ve lived all over the place since my early twenties, but never London. So in some ways I was nervous about it, but I’m enjoying it immensely now.

If I turned on your ipod now, what would be playing?

I’m obsessed with ‘Song For Zula’ by Phosphorescent at the moment, OBSESSED. I might have a problem.

You have been in the States this year. How did you find it out there? Did they treat you well?!

I just got home from the States a few days ago! It was fun and fine. Some things about that country I love and other things I cannot stand. It was a strange time to be there, the Boston bombing just happening. If I’m honest I found the handling of that situation in the US media appalling and the public reaction to the capture of the suspect was pretty disturbing. But in terms of music my time in the country opened up a lot of new opportunities. I also ate some shockingly unhealthy food.

You have been touring quite extensively this year, and you have got a lot of dates coming up. Are their things that you find difficult about being on the road?

Absolutely – in fact I’ve recently decided to rein in it a bit after this year. I’m going to concentrate on writing and recording music for film/TV and put some effort into 1 or 2 big shows a year. Traveling and playing music to people is a joy 90% of the time, but I do hate being away from home. It’s possibly me just growing out of that lifestyle, some people love being on the road but I do struggle.

Is getting home a relief or do you feel sad that the journey is over?

A bit of both. I love coming home but I do feel a bit lost for a couple of days, especially if I’m touring with a good group of people.

Are there some rituals or habits that you have picked up while away from home / touring?

I just try to make myself as comfortable as possible – lots of books, lots of films, pillows, I do laundry as often as I can. I try not to drink too much these days, I’ve suffered in the past – nothing worse than doing a gig with an anvil of a hangover.

Your music has found its way onto some fairly big US television shows. Can you tell us a bit more about that?

It’s always exciting to hear the songs in a new setting, and those shows reach a whole new audience for me. I’m not sure why music supervisors have picked up on the tracks; I suppose the emotive nature of the music is good for drama. I generally get to soundtrack people dying or sobbing.

You recently (ish) released Regret Less, your third studio album. Was the recording and release process an entirely fun one, or were there times of frustration and difficulty?

It was the first album I did by myself, without a manager or label or anyone else getting involved. As a result, the process was painless and a total joy. I worked with close friends and we just took our time to make the album sound right. I’m very proud of it.

Where would you like to see yourself in 5 years from now?

Still writing, still recording, somewhere in the world, surrounded by cats and children. Slimmer and with better clothes.

Here is a live version of ‘Blossom’ a song from his latest (and brilliant) album Regret Less. Richard recorded this at one of The Boatshed's live sessions.