Interview: Sofar Sounds

Mar 21 2014

There are many ways to present the world with new music. Doing this in an unpretentious and undemanding manner whilst prioritising the direct relationship between the real giver (the artist), and the real recipients (an excited and open audience), is rarely one of them nowadays. This is why Sofar Sounds has so quickly become a musical phenomenon. Below, Chris Mahoney from Sofar adds to the notion of any kind of set up, anywhere, being possible if music is the centre...does anyone have the contact for the Antarctic Base Camp?

[Billetto] Sofar Sounds is growing and growing. Sofar+ is proof of that. How big can this get?

[Chris Mahoney] We're in +60 cities in over 30 countries and there is no end in sight. No one has put a limit on how big we want to become, so we'll keep on growing. One of our aims this year is to start in a new city every month. March will see us start in Lisbon and Cardiff. Next month should be Malta.

[B] The list of Sofar cities on your website is long already. But I bet you have a (secret) wish list of countries and locations you would like to have a Sofar event in? Where would an extreme place be?

[CM] I want to host a show on a riverboat down the canal in London, but we could go more extreme. How about the Antarctic Base Camp? Could someone put us in touch with those guys?

[B] Do you do live recordings? And would there potentially then be live albums available to purchase for curious souls, fans and people not able to go to the events?

[CM] We've just started live streaming our London shows for anyone that can't make it down, and have recently released our very first Sofar vinyl compilation album. You can buy it online or pick it up are our next festival.

[B] The Sofar+ event in April is a festival with food pop-ups too, right? We have a lot of foodies in our community, so any chance you could reveal some of the food guests will be able to buy?

[CM] Well, we don't want too give much away, but there'll definitely be some tasty food stalls at our event. They'll cater for all the veggies, vegans and meat lovers alike!

[B] You can’t choose a favourite child, but is there one specific Sofar event that has gone down as particularly memorable? And why was this?

[CM] We did a show in Clapton earlier this year and had a band called Caged Animals play. It was a great night overall, but it ended with a bang when their bassist stood up and gave an impromptu rap entitled 'Man-Eater'. It was amazing. It's always the best when things happen spontaneously - which tends to happen a lot at our nights, you just have to see it to believe it!

You can sign up for the next tickets to be released for the April 26th Sofar+ Festival, secretly somewhere in Shoreditch.