Frasier Banks…Is that your real name (unofficial first question) ”My name…You probably won’t believe me when I say this but I dreamt my name. I know it sounds like one of those made-up stories, but I did. Frasier was actually the name of my sister’s cat haha (probably named after the show) but as for Banks? – I have no idea where that came from… But yeah, when I was 16 I had a dream that I was introduced on stage as Frasier Banks to a crowd full of people cheering. And when I woke up, the dream had been so vivid, and I’d felt so confident going on stage that it just stuck. It felt right. And Frasier Banks was born.” Born he was and ready to bring us some kick ass pop tunes!
1. How did you get started as a musician?
According to my parents, I started being interested in music from the moment I learned to speak… My dad is a classically trained musician and naturally I think he wanted to see me enjoy music as much as him. I began playing the cornet at around the age of 5, and then piano around 7. I think piano became my main interest as it became a vessel for creating my own music, and allowed me to start writing in my early teens. From there, I entered the pop world, much to my dad’s horror haha…
2. Who and what inspires you and your music (fave record/track)?
People inspire me a lot. Art. Literature. Religion. And history too… I think that’s why writing is so important to me because it allows me to not only have an opinion but to put that viewpoint into a piece of work within pop culture that anyone can relate to, agree with or oppose if they want to. It’s more than just making a statement. Similarly, other pop artists who do this massively inspire me, but I fear there are too many to name, and I quite like that no one really knows for sure who I idolise.
3. How did you end up at The Institute?
I ended up at the ICMP after a stint at Goldsmith’s University. It didn’t work out there, mainly because of my love of partying. I knew that the ICMP would allow me to focus solely on my greatest passion in life – writing. And so maybe that’s why I’m more driven now than ever before. Although I am still very partial to a Jack Daniels or ten.
4. If you wouldn’t be doing music for a living, what would you be doing?
Probably A&R, or styling. I worked briefly with an underground Hackney-based stylist as a teenager and instantly fell in love with what goes into the visual side of pop music. Many of the people closest to me have noticed I pick up on up and coming artists long before they ‘make it’, and other artists and acts that I know of tend to ask my advice on their imagery and how to materialise their concepts; visually. Aside from the actual music I create, I absolutely love the image side of everything.
5. Who is your biggest fan?
Probably my closest friends. They see the work I put in to writing and how much I care about the songs I write. And they know me so well that I think they know, perhaps more than anyone else, what it all means to me.
6. What was the first record you ever bought?
Not even embarrassed to say this. Britney Spears – Oops I Did It Again. I told you, pop is in my veins and always has been. But before my parents started giving me pocket money to be able to buy my own music, I listened to a lot of my siblings’ records, Bon Jovi, Bryan Adams, Alanis Morissette…
7. What was the first or most impressive concert you’ve ever seen?
Gwen Stefani on The Sweet Escape tour when I was in my mid-teens. I think that was the first time I saw music and fashion have incredible wild sex right before my eyes.
8. Besides music; any other secret hobbies/passions?
Partying, partying, partying.
9. If you could collaborate with anyone (living), who would it be?
There are too many to name… I’d be really greedy if I could be! I’d love to write with Dr Luke and Max Martin. And I’d die to collaborate with Katy Perry; I already know what I’d want her and I to write about, but if I told you, I’d have to kill you haha.
10. What/where would you dream gig be?
In space. I mean, it’s already been done I think? But that would be incredible.
No question about it; this man bleeds pop music and after you listen to his songs you’ll be glad he does! Thank heavens partying is compatible ;)