My Keane interview was more candid than expected
I've interviewed a decent amount of musicians over the years, and gotten my share of by-the-book answers.
Typically when you ask an artist about record sales -- especially if they haven't sold many lately -- they'll tell you they don't care about the numbers and yadda yadda.
Since Keane is coming to Merriweather Post Pavilion this week, I spoke with lead singer Tom Chaplin about the band's new EP, hip-hop collaborations and their struggles with fame. But I also wanted to know what he thought about their sales figures. Here's a link to the piece, which ran in today's paper.
Keane's first album, "Hopes and Fears," was huge. It sold millions upon millions, and made them overnight stars. But every album since then hasn't sold as much.
I asked Chaplin if he ever thought about that, and instead of giving me a stock answer about not caring, he was quite frank about it. Check it out ...
Here is his quote, in its entirety:
"When we finished with the first record, it was a monster. It did so unbelievably well and it exceeded all of our expectations, but we all sat down at the end of it and said, 'We never want to make a record like that again.'
We wanted to make a record which finally brought out our own artistic sense of direction. We didn’t want to make another "Hopes and Fears." We could have easily done. We could have easily cashed in, but we wanted to be in it as artists, as opposed to just cashing in on all the success of that first record.
We said, 'It doesn’t matter if we don’t sell as many records the next time around. Let's make a record for ourselves, for the right reasons.' I think ultimately, that puts you in a better place.
Sometimes you think, 'Wouldn't it be lovely to sell that many records again,' but to be honest, we're made for life, and we’ve got a large fan base. It's done a lot for us, but it's not how we define ourselves. We're not worried too much about the number of records we sell.
You never know what's around the corner. We could quite easily make an album that's a big smashing hit, but at the same time, we could end up making an album that's weird and strange and off in a different direction. We'll just have to wait and see."