Thursday, July 09, 2020

INTERVIEW: Danny Worsnop on his current US run, plans for the future and new music

INTERVIEW: Danny Worsnop on his current US run, plans for the future and new music

Last week, I headed out to one of my favorite venues in Boston to chat with the man behind the mic for Asking Alexandria. But there is way more to Danny Worsnop. His solo work is so drastically different but in a gorgeous way. The club Worsnop played, Sonia, with his partner for this project Kasper, holds an intimate 320 people and the show allowed him to truly connect with the crowd. The smiles were never ending and the interactions were on point between the crowd and Worsnop. 

Just a half hour or so before the set, I stepped backstage to chat with Worsnop as he was beginning to warm up for the night to come. While the energy before a Asking Alexandria show is a beautiful crazy, chatting with Worsnop one on one allowed me to truly see the man behind the  music and see someone genuinely so happy about the music and being able to tour like he does. 

You’re playing these club shows, obviously a bit of a different environment. I know from seeing your Instagram, you’ve been posting self reflections after each day of the tour. How have these solo dates been going for you?

They’ve been awesome. I don’t do days off. It’s a waste of time. They’ve been great, it’s interesting going to new cities. Like I don’t think I’ve played in Boston before, it’s always Worcester. So this is a new market for me. Kasper, my guitarist, this is kind of his coming home, well he isn’t from here but he went to Berklee here. So he’s been pointing stuff out, showing us all his old haunts and stuff. So it’s been fun but, yeah I love doing this. It’s my favorite thing.

When did you start working on this solo music?

When I was about eight.

Oh, so you’ve been doing solo music for forever.

Way longer then we’ve ever done Asking, yeah.

How about on “Shades of Blue” or even the latest single specifically.

Well, I started writing on “Shades of Blue” about three years ago. “The Long Ride Home”, maybe five years ago. And I’ve been working on this new one for maybe a year.

And you released the new single, “Another You”. Is that a good indication of what’s to come? A little grittier, maybe even a note of R&B? Maybe that’s just me.

I don’t know, we’re gonna sit down and really dig into the record in April. It’s definitely going to be in that direction but with a lot of guitars.

So in preparing for these sets, you have your friend on stage with you, but it’s a very, very different environment compared to what you play with Asking Alexandria. How do you prepare for these sets?

The exact same way I do for any other act. I drink some tequila and play guitar.

So it’s the same thing?

I have the exact same routine no matter what I’m doing. Honestly, keep it loose, casual. I don’t do the nerves thing since I just warm up my fingers and my voice works already. Just have to warm up my fingers a bit because it’s fucking cold. In summer, I don’t necessarily do it. This, it’s just to warm me up at the guitar, the neck’s freezing. We do tequilas, we have laughs, talks, we have good times then we go up and do a rock and roll show.

Perfect, then in listening to the solo material in comparison to AA material, obviously your vocals are so different. When it comes to the songwriting, it’s not you having to think about the whole band. How does it differ when it comes to the songwriting? I’m sure you have a big hand in the writing for AA.

I do write by myself but I write a lot with Kasper. And Dennis who’s another one of my guys I’ve started writing with. He’s from Croatia, I did another few with him. Because while I can play guitar and I can passably maybe play the piano, I’m not a composer, he is. So I have him to help me make my ideas a whole thing. Sometimes he’s just got a track and I’m like, yeah that’s it. Then I’ll throw some guitars and vocals on it. So I’m always just working with one other person. With Asking, I mean it’s just Ben and I in the studio with some other  writers in the back with the studio guys. So it’s the same, then with Harlot, it’s Jeff and I. So it’s kind of the same, just different people.

Then when it comes to it, I know Ben does solo music too, has put out records.

He’s got like three albums worth. That he ain’t putting out. We need to get everyone else on him. I’ve been telling him to.

Then considering you both have solo projects, this tour is only a month long, I think you have one day off.

Yeah, it’s because we had a fourteen hour drive that day.

That would be why you weren’t playing a show. Then how do you balance it? That tour with Papa Roach was all summer, but you talked about it a bit, there’s a new album coming from AA, you’re working on your own new record. Is it something where you’ll go a few months focusing on your solo record, then a little with AA.

No it’s mostly when one isn’t working, the other one is. In either direction. Asking was supposed to originally start working in April, now it isn’t till May. So I’m doing my album in April. It’s like cool, I have a month to make an album.

So you’re just nonstop. Then you talked about it, but you’re going to be working on the new record. But you just got married, so you have a wife involved now in these plans.

I do. She hates these plans.

She’s now part of it all. So maybe focuses or goals for you over this next year?

I don’t know about the next year, but in the next five years, I’d like to get to at least 300 shows a year. Then have two months to make albums. So then be on the road for ten months and have two months between it. So do a AA tour for a month, Danny Worsnop tour, AA tour, Danny Worsnop tour. So do that, each do five tours a year, and put an album out each every year. That’s my idea.

That’s incredible. Clearly you know what you’re doing if you’ve been at it this long.