Heading out of Birmingham, England, Jericho Noguera is a British singer/songwriter with a very interesting sound. Interesting as in good interesting, not that interesting that is actually “okay then”. About to release his debut album, Jericho is giving us all a taste of his psychedelic style with his single ‘Separate’. We had a chat with Jericho about ‘Separate’, discovering new music and much more!
Why did you decide to enter the music industry?
So I could be a disappointment to the whole family just like my father before me. Music was always the thing I was naturally drawn to. I’d be making music anyway, so it makes sense to push myself on a professional level. It’s easier than ever to get your music on streaming platforms so it doesn’t seem like a massive leap to start uploading. I started the music stuff when I was so young so it doesn’t feel like I’ve entered into an industry, it’s just where I am.
What can you tell us about your release ‘Separate’?
It’s the second track from my upcoming album and was one of the first tracks I wrote for the project. It’s about feelings of acceptance, longing, hope, tragedy, grief and love washing over you like that bit in Finding Nemo where they ride the East Australian current with Crush the turtle, but instead, it’s me in Balsall Health walking to work coming out the other end of a post-breakup depression. Absolutely classic.
What was the recording and writing process like?
Picture me and Sam in my old garage studio, also my bedroom at the time. There’s a patch of mould on the ceiling where it’s been leaking when it rains too hard, and my portable heater is buzzing away fighting off the cold because it was absolutely freezing in there. I’m sat at the drums and Sam’s playing around on my Yamaha keyboard. He starts playing the bit you hear at the start of ‘Separate’ and I go mad for it. So, I start playing drums and there we had it, the beginning of our next banger.
I remember Sam was sceptical about the effect on the keys at first, but we recorded us jamming it out on my iPhone 7 Plus in rosegold anyway. Over the next few days, I listened to the recording and a general image of the song started to emerge. A week or so later I recorded most of the foundations of the song, then I left it alone. I thought it had potential so finishing it was daunting. Once the rest of the album started to fall into place I came back to it. I think I wrote the second half of ‘Separate’ over six months after the initial recording.
For me, writing and recording happen alongside each other. I like to go on walks and write to break up the hours on end sat at my desk producing. The reality of the process is sitting and grinding meticulously for days. It takes time because I’m still learning how to record and produce as I go along. It’s all steps in the right direction though.
What do you hope people take from the single?
Just a feeling of relief, I hope it provides them with a narrative for acceptance in the face of a breakup. Moving on and getting ready for the next thing.
Which is more challenging for you – melody or lyrics?
Lyrics, the music comes more naturally. Lyrics often take more thought and time. They’re something I develop and work on consciously. I’ll hold a song back for time because I’m trying to write a line. It might be one word that doesn’t sit right, but when I know, I know and I’m getting better at it all the time.
Describe your music in three words.
Honest, varied and true.
What do you think is the best way to discover new music?
I think Spotify is a great tool for discovering new music. If I like a song I’ll usually go straight to Spotify’s suggestions for more. The only problem is it relies on your existing tastes and doesn’t really help you escape your musical echo chamber. I’d also recommend checking out what’s on in your local music scene and taking a chance on a few random gigs. Also, ask your mates what they’ve been listening to; I’m sure they’d love to go on about their favourite music.
What does the future hold for Jericho Noguera?
My first album is out in July. I’ll be promoting and gigging off the back of that for a while. I’ll also be looking at getting some music videos produced, then I’ll be working on my second album. I’ve got a lot of it written already so the wait for it shouldn’t be too long.
Beyond that, I’ll be dominating the global tour circuit, headlining Glasto and all that. Should be chillin’, then when the hype dies down and I’m depressed I’ll start shredding clarinet at Ronnie Scott’s every Thursday evening. After that, it’s hard to say. Wife and kids might be nice.
What advice do you have for any person planning to become a musician?
Work on the music first. Practice your instrument and get a clear vision of who you are. Do as much as you can yourself, learn more instruments, learn to produce. It’ll take time – it’s already been ten years for me. Be committed to it and do it because you love it, not because you want to be famous.