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On The Table Read Magazine, “the best entertainment magazine in the UK“, musician Kyle Neveau talks about his band, Gabby & The Gondolas, and their new single, Pottery God.
Written by JJ Barnes
I interviewed Kyle Neveau about his life and career, the new single from his band Gabby & The Gondolas, Pottery God, and his creative songwriting process.
Tell me a bit about who you are.
My name is Kyle Neveau. I started this project, Gabby & The Gondolas, after moving to Nashville a couple of years ago. I was born and raised in Orange County, California.
When did you first WANT to write songs?
When I was a little kid. I don’t really come from a musical family, but I was always very into music from a young age.
When did you start writing songs?
I first started writing songs in 2012. I started out not really knowing anything and just kind of learned and developed my style along the way.
What was your first song released, and what was it about?
I just released my first single with Gabby & The Gondolas, Steamed Rice, in June. It’s about a lot of the experiences I had in my early 20s and how lost I was during that time.
What was your latest song released, and what was it about?
We released Pottery God on July 12th, it’s about humanity’s relationship with organized religion. It’s one of my favorite songs off the forthcoming debut album, Pollyanna (out August 16th). Pottery God is an unusual song for a single, but it’s so hard to cut through the noise these days that I figured I might as well just put it out there rather than burying it on the album.
Focusing on your latest song. What were your biggest challenges with Pottery God?
Some songs come pretty easy, others take a lot of work to finish. Pottery God was one of the easier ones, I came up with the chord progression then I just started writing ideas down for potential lyrics. From there, it’s just editing and massaging things into place over time. For me, a lot of it happens subconsciously if I let myself sit with the song for a while.
How many songs are you working on right now?
I’m working on another LP right now, hoping to put it out in 2024, but we’ll see. I took about 6 months off from writing while we were recording Pollyanna. I’m glad to be writing again, it’s like therapy for me.
Do you keep to a theme with your music, or just go where the mood strikes?
I usually just follow my instincts which lead me to the same place most of the time, I guess that’s just my sound. I try to do what feels natural given the context of the song, and I think there’s a throughline with my music.
What is your favourite song you’ve recorded, and what do you love about it?
Some of my favorite songs off Pollyanna are Pottery God, Chasing Gold, The Right Attitudes, and Cold Beaches. I think Cold Beaches probably has the most potential from a popularity standpoint, it’s pleasant to listen to but the lyrics offer something to think about. I think we did a really nice job with that one.
Do you find other people’s music inspires you? Who do you listen to most?
For sure, being a huge fan of music is what inspired me to become a musician in the first place. I’ve gone through so many phases over the years, but my favorite music tends to come from the 60s and 70s. Neil Young is probably my biggest inspiration, I’ve been coming back to his music my whole life. I find that a lot of my favorite contemporary artists were inspired by him as well.
Do you write your own music, or do you have musicians you work with?
I write my all my songs, but I work with producers, engineers, and other musicians when recording.
Do you play any instruments?
Guitar mostly, but I also play a little bit of keyboard, bass, and drums.
Do you like performing live, or does it scare you? Where can people watch you?
I love playing live, it’s so rewarding to share music with others when they are enjoying it too. We’re planning several shows for later this year after the album is out, Instagram is probably the easiest place to keep track of upcoming show dates. https://www.instagram.com/gabbyandthegondolas/
Is your music available online, and where can people listen to it?
Yes, you can find it wherever you stream music. Spotify, Apple, YouTube, etc.
What’s something you never expected about being a songwriter? What have you learned that surprised you?
Some people are amazed that you write songs and say they don’t have the ability to write, but I think most people can write songs if they put their mind to it.
Have you had any experiences that really stand out because of your songs?
Playing my songs live and having people connect with them has been cool, those are experiences I’ll probably always remember. It feels good to create something and for other people to enjoy it.
What is the first piece of advice you would give to anyone inspired to write songs?
Just get started and stick with it, there’s no right or wrong way. It’s not rocket science, it’s a matter of putting the effort in. Even the greatest songwriters of all time have written more bad songs than they’d care to admit, but the key is to keep writing. Also, make what you want to make, not what you think someone else will like. Don’t make music to seek external validation.
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