Zandari Festa 2015 will take place in Hongdae from October 2 – 4. In order to spotlight some of the talent performing at this year’s event, Korea Gig Guide and our friends at Do Indie are teaming up to ask a bunch of acts five simple questions.
For this installment, we’re talking with British singer-songwriter Jon Byrne.
1) Why are you excited to be performing at Zandari Festa 2015?
It is my first time In Korea and Asia so it’s a totally new experience for me which I am really looking forward to. The festival looks amazing and I’m looking forward to listening to some Korean bands and learning more about Korean music. As a storyteller this is a great opportunity for me to experience a different culture and take in all that’s around me, breathe it in, and let it become part of me. This is what excites me.
2) What can people expect from a Jon Byrne live show?
My stepmother died 10 years back, she loved to paint and she had this box she used to carry her paints around in. After she died my dad gave me the box saying she had left it to me. I took the paints out and painted this huge sun on the wall in my studio. When all the paint was used up I put a microphone in the box and a friend of mine reinforced it with steel plates, it works great as a stomp box, acting like a heartbeat running through my songs. I feel like a freight train flying across America at top speed as I stomp a steady beat chugging my guitar and howling down my harmonica.
I try to make my one-man show entertaining, upbeat, real, honest, and powerful and I believe I have every piece of passion possible for what I do and sing about. I live and almost die with that passion on stage. I also like to break my set down with some ballads sang on piano.
3) For fest-goers not familiar with Jon Byrne yet, what should they know about you?
What I write about most is things that have happened in my life. The place where I grew up is a small and hard-hitting ship building town called Barrow-in-Furness. It’s full of warm and colourful eccentric characters. A very British thing! This is something that lives and breathes in my music. I believe that God placed within my spirit a great social awareness and empathy of the lives that are happening around me. There is a good deal of dark humour in most of my songs that I hope that Korean audiences will enjoy and find some interest in.
4) Aside from performing, what else would you like to do during Zandari Festa 2015?
I have never been to a festival overseas so I’m looking forward to experiencing it, I have looked online at the festival and it looks fantastic. I don’t know a great deal about Korean music so I’m looking forward to watching some bands and artists perform, gathering some inspiration, and also hopefully checking out other things that might be happening aside from the music.
5) It’s important to stay hydrated at music festivals. What’s your festival drink of choice?
I no longer drink alcohol. I say this as it used to be my only drink of choice and it certainly never kept me hydrated, so it’s just good old water for me now and maybe a lovely cup of tea and the end of the day.