"this song wouldn't exist if it wasn't for lockdown" says Charlie Pittman on "i'm still lonely"
It's true, lockdown was a dark place for the entire world. But sometimes you need find the light even if everything around you is pitch black. And that's what Charlie did, moved by his passion for music, he wrote "i'm still lonely"with friend and producer Taylor Bickett (over zoom! of course). And here we are, a couple of weeks later, a mixture of sounds between Lewis Capaldi and Sam Smith and aesthetics from one of his inspirations, Jeremy Zucker.
If you had to describe Charlie in 3 words, which ones would they be?
Ambitious, honest, TALL (4 inches off being a medical giant)
How did the passion for singing start?
I’ve always been massively inspired by music - long before I even realised it was something I wanted to pursue. I have strong memories of singing along to whatever was playing in my parents car, so have been brought up around many different genres and styles. It wasn’t until high school that I started discovering the artists that inspired me and made me want to emulate them.
What's your background? I have a background in acting and theatre having just graduated with a degree from ArtsEd in west London but songwriting is something I’ve been doing since I was 16 and was something I’d always come back to throughout my training. I taught myself how to play piano and guitar when I was a teenager, mostly as a tool to helping me write, as soon as I started learning how to play, I started writing my own songs.
"i'm still lonely" is your debut single, what is it about?
“I’m still lonely” is about the feeling just after a relationship ends. The temporary feelings of guilt, emptiness and sadness that ultimately come with breaking up with someone (when the break-up is amicable of course). It’s easy for feelings to spiral and to overthink situations and can be difficult to get perspective until some time has passed but in the time immediately after a break up it’s hard not to blame yourself. Sometimes you just have to sit with your emotions and say ‘hey this sucks’ and allow yourself to wallow in self-pity!
What's the process behind the making of "i'm still lonely"?
I wrote the song over zoom during lockdown with my main collaborator and close friend Taylor Bickett - who I met over TikTok of all places. The song took a few sessions to write but the main ideas and melody came fairly easily. I’m fortunate enough to have such a strong working chemistry with Taylor and we have such an openness with each other which helps us achieve exactly what we want. The song was then produced by an up and coming American producer called KMO. I was extremely specific and detailed in what I wanted from the production of the track and KMO was amazing at putting all the ideas into the song. I wanted it to have a filmic/atmospheric quality to it but still allow for the vulnerability to come through and was really happy with how it turned out.
Is the track personal? The track is extremely personal and was written a couple of weeks after my last relationship ended. As it was a co-write there are ideas that don’t fit my exact narrative but it is a really honest (and exposing) song that was scary to put out intro the world but I pride myself on being open in both real life and in my music so felt like the right song for my first release.
LISTEN TO "I'M STILL LONELY" HERE.
A mixture between Sam Smith and Lewis Capaldi in "i'm still lonely", what are your inspirations?
There is not a day where I don’t listen to music so I’m inspired by absolutely everything that I listen to. Jeremy Zucker’s ‘love is not dying’ is the album that has inspired me the most this year and there’s definitely elements of that in the track. There’s also a couple of references to Bruno Major’s first LP as that was something that fit the narrative and context of the song well. One of my biggest musical inspirations is John Mayer and so I feel there is always a part of him in my music however subtle or small that may be. Lewis Capaldi is an artist that I’ve been obsessed with for years since I saw him play at Scala before he took off and I think him and Sam Smith have absolutely defined the ‘sad boy’ ballad, so to be mentioned in the same breath as them means a lot to me.
As an artist, how has lockdown and whatever is happening in the world right now affected you?
As an artist it has actually opened up so many doors for me - this song wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for lockdown so i’m glad that I’ve been able to take some positives from such a dark time. I’ve written more in lockdown than ever before and stuff that I’m actually happy with and proud of - which has been a big step for me. Being able to collaborate with other talented artists (even if it is over the internet) has been an amazing experience.
What's next for Charlie Pittman?
I’m currently working on my 2nd single which will be released this winter and beyond that, who knows! I’m just going get my head down and continue writing and working as hard as I can to produce music that I’m happy with. I’d love to be able to gig in 2021 but we’ll see what happens!
Follow Charlie Pittman on his journey here.