Dan Patlansky speaks about his career and upcoming tour ahead of his Norwich show this week
PUBLISHED: 15:02 19 November 2018 | UPDATED: 15:14 19 November 2018
Tobias Coetsee/Noble PR
South African singer-songwriter Dan Patlansky, with support from Gorilla Riot, will be headlining The Waterfront in Norwich this Thursday [November 22].
Following Dan Patlansky’s sold out March 2018 UK tour, he is hitting the road again in a few days time on another UK tour that will see him headline The Waterfront in Norwich on November 22.
Patlansky’s blues/rock sound stems from a childhood in which he was immersed heavily in the genre.
“It was my parents constantly listening to the blues and their fairly extensive album collection that I grew up with.”
“When it came time to pick up the guitar in my early teens it was the most natural form of music to play because I felt like I knew it and I had listened to it for so long.”
Having started playing from a very young age, the hours of practice seem to have paid off as he was named Total Guitar magazine’s No.4 of the 10 Best Rock Guitarists In The World 2015 and has been nominated for their 2018 award, Best Blues Guitarist.
Playing guitar has always been a big passion for Patlansky who also gives advice for those who are picking one up for the very first time.
“I think the only thing that gets you through multiple hours of practice is the complete and utter passion for it. That makes you practice because that’s the only way you can get good at anything.”
“It’s always been a massive part of my life and I think the only way to succeed at anything in life is just having an immense passion for something and that will push you through the darker and more challenging hours.”
Patlansky’s career so far has seen him open a show for Bruce Springsteen and tour with Joe Satriani, both renowned musicians/guitarists.
“Those were obviously two highlights of my career so far, and both for very different reasons.”
“The Springsteen thing was great because it was an audience of probably about 85,000 people. It was a massive audience and an incredible experience playing in front of so many people with so much energy in front of you.”
“The Satriani thing was incredible. I did close to 30 days with him around Europe and the UK. He was an influence of mine growing up, so to be able to hang out with Joe and tour with the guy, and just get to know him was a surreal experience.”
“It was the right type of audience to expose myself to because it was a guitar loving audience and a big part of what I do is the guitar playing thing so it was a real honour to do that.”
Perfection Kills, Patlansky’s latest album, was released earlier this year and aimed to be more about the honesty and live sound of the songs. Having worked extensively with Theo Crous (a musician, producer and engineer) on previous albums, he decided to self produce this album instead.
“The song writing process and the arrangement of the songs was a massive focus, which I learnt from Theo.”
“The only difference was that I just wanted this album to be a lot closer to the live performance. If someone buys the album at a show they wouldn’t be, I suppose, disappointed or it wouldn’t be too vastly different when they got home and listened to the record.”
“I wanted that live feel, and Theo’s production style is very much more of a polished product. To ask a producer to change the way he produces I thought was quite a cheeky thing to do.”
“I just thought the best person to get that live feel across would be myself because I’m obviously present in all my live shows and I know the way that it goes down.”
Self-producing and releasing an album made for a slightly more daunting process as all the work was done by Patlansky himself.
“You have to kind of separate your brain into the performer and the artist. The producer is listening to it from a completely outside place.”
“Being an artist you are always hearing things that you like in the guitar playing and the singing that you like for almost selfish reasons. You’ve got to sit back as a producer and say is that serving the song and the album as a whole? Is that the right thing for the whole concept of the album?”
“It was the case of having two hats and having to change between the two hats constantly, which was a bit of a challenge at first.”
“It was a big risk producing it myself but I think that it paid off and that the album has been received really well. We’ve got great reviews from the album so that was a really big relief for me more than anything.”
Despite Perfection Kills being his ninth studio album, Patlansky has managed to keep up the song writing momentum.
“From the moment we’ve released an album I’ve already started writing ideas for the next one. I’m always writing and coming up with ideas and concepts so by the time we need to get into the studio it’s just about taking a week or two to get all the ideas more refined.”
“It’s never a case of writing from scratch two weeks before the album because there’s always a fairly large bank of ideas and music that’s been written over the last couple of years.”
Having already done a sold out UK tour earlier this year, he is excited to be getting back on the road again in a few days time.
“I’m always very excited to be touring the UK. It seems to be a hot bed in the world at the moment for the blues and the blues rock thing, so it really always is a pleasure touring here.”
“If I play shows in the UK compared to the Netherlands I almost find, I’m not trying to be rude, that the Netherlands audiences are very different. They will find it completely acceptable to talk through the whole set or have their backs turned to you, depending where you are, that’s not always the case.”
“In the UK, it’s very much a discerning audience and a very knowledgeable audience about the genre of music that you’re playing, which can sometimes be a very daunting thing as the audience know what they are listening to and have heard the best of the best play this type of thing.”
“I think it’s one of the most respectful audiences in the world to play for, especially when you take the music really low down and soft and the gentler moments. I find the UK audiences for the most part really respect that and really give the artist respect, it’s fantastic.”
With the Norwich show only days away, fans can expect to be treated to songs from all of his albums.
“We toured at the beginning of the year as the main release for Perfection Kills where 90pc of the set was from that album.”
“We will obviously be doing a lot from the new album but we will also be dipping into the back catalogue which for me makes the set far better to watch because it’s a greatly balanced set with old and new.”
“We are really just trying to put the best live set together we possibly can with whatever songs we can. So I think this live show is going to be, in my opinion, the best set we’ve done to date.”
Once the tour is complete, Dan Patlansky will be returning to South Africa for his Guitar Weekends and some much needed family time.
“This December I go back to South Africa which is prime time summer time. We do my guitar weekend when I get back from this tour which is like a training weekend where I teach 30 guitar players what I do and my take on the blues and music.”
“After that it’s pretty much family time until the end of January. Not much happens in South Africa, especially on the blues scene during the festive season.”
“It’s much needed family time. I’ve got two kids and a wife so I definitely need a bit of family time when I get back so I’m certainly looking forward to that.”
Tickets to see Dan Patlansky at The Waterfront on November 22 are available for £17.50 advance from the UEA Box Office website.