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The Black Veil

From Jazz Shows to Album Recording: A Catch-Up with Henry Claude

8 November 19 interview: Rachael Halaburda

Henry Claude is a man with his finger in many Notts music pies. Our Rachael sat down with him for a chat about his latest escapades...

Give us a rundown of what projects and bands you’re involved in right now?
At the moment I play with Cinema Gold, Torn Sail, Brown Fang and Jimi Mack. I always have my own jazz gigs every month bubbling along. I used to play for Camille Christel and The Shrives not too long ago.

How did you first get into music?
As cliché as it sounds it was through my dad’s piano playing. I have a vivid memory of him playing the changes to some show tune and I wanted to discover the power or knowledge that made that one voicing moving to the next convey such emotion.

What would you say has been the greatest moment so far for you as a musician?
I’m not sure I’ve had any great moments! Co-writing an opera for a primary school, doing a show at the Edinburgh Fringe for a week and smashing my jazz bass in half must all be up there.

Can you tell us a little bit more about your latest and main project Cinema Gold?
A fan of an old band we were in came up after a gig and told us we’d ruined everything by doing Cinema Gold. That made me feel like we were doing everything right and only bolstered my confidence in the three of us. There’s an epidemic of ‘guitar’ bands claiming to be psychedelic, punk, indie or whatever else. We want to be as far from that as possible and not limit ourselves by a spoon-fed label that makes it easier for audiences and themselves to digest what’s going off on stage.

If you could go back and speak to your younger self, what advice or message would you want to share from what you now know about the music world?
Don’t get married, don’t have children and don’t be bitter. A trumpet player, who shall not be named, once said that to me.

When you create a piece of music, how do you know when it's complete?
When it no longer sounds like me.

Who are some of your biggest influences as an artist?
Dire Straits will always continue to inspire me. There’s enough music in Telegraph Road from the Alchemy: Dire Straits Live tour to last a lifetime. If you go back to 1979 and listen to Lions from their debut album, that’s as fresh as you’ll ever get. They’re often overlooked. To name a few people I know that inspire me: Josh Horsfall, Joe Michelson, John Thompson, my dad and all the other musicians I’ve had the pleasure to play with.

Out of all the music you’ve been part of, which individual single or EP are you most proud of?
Sherwood Pines by Brown Fang. Out very soon.

To others out there with talent, but just aren’t sure how to take the first step, what advice would you give?
Meet and play with as many people as possible. I’m really playing catch up on all of that, I was a real late starter to performing.

Have you got anything exciting coming up in the near future that you would like to share?
Lots! The Brown Fang album should be out in the next few months. Huw from Torn Sail has his next album out soon that features me and a whole host of lovely musicians. Then the Cinema Gold trio of hope are starting to record our album this month. Between all of that I’ll be playing the blues and eight bars down on Lover’s Lane and faking it until I make it...

Read our interview with Cinema Gold from earlier this year.


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