Talking Music: Michael Malarkey: From Vampire Diaries To Mongrels – Part 2

Yesterday, Entertainment South Wales featured the first part of our interview with Vampire Diaries actor and singer/songwriter Michael Malarkey.

Michael has just released his debut album, Mongrels, and will be touring the UK during October including a date at Cardiff’s Clwb for Bach on October 23.

Today Michael discusses her new album with Andy Howells…

Can you tell us about your new release?
I called it Mongrels, partly because of my own mongrel heritage – I’m part Arab, part Italian, Part Irish, etc. etc., but also because of my mongrel musical nature as well. I wanted to explore different grounds and sounds and in that sense the songs are like my own litter of Mongrels.

It’s a pretty eclectic record and in a way all the songs are different journeys into different corners of my mind. It’s like a colourful carnival ride through my crooked subconscious. Mongrels also kind of represents a sense of rootlessness, of longing, a mixture of hope and sadness that affects a lot of artists and dreamers alike. It’s a record of the changing of the seasons, of wading through the darker parts of your soul and coming to terms with your own impermanence.

It’s kind of dark I at times I guess, but that’s just the world I come from. Some people say Leonard Cohen is dark too – even depressing – and I never understood that. I find it uplifting, healing.

You’re coming over to the UK and playing Cardiff – have you visited the UK or Wales before?
I’m a dual citizen actually and lived in London for 9 years. Spent most of my 20s there. I did my BA at LAMDA in West London and started off in the theatre, working at The National and in the West End, before returning to the States to focus more on screen-work. I’ve only been to Wales one other time I think when I went for a wedding. Always love coming back to the UK as it feels like a home away from home.

What are you listening to presently?
Spinning the new records from Ghostpoet, Dead Cross and Alex Cameron at the moment. Recently on a Tears For Fears nostalgia kick as well.

What can people expect from your forthcoming shows?
There’s a few solo dates on the European leg of the tour, but the majority of the tour – and the entire UK leg – will be with a full band. Alex Eichenberger (Cello) and Tom Williams (Bass) will be joining me again from the Knots tour. Alex also played cello and did BV’s on Feed The Flames and Knots, so she’s actually been on the Malarkey squad from the beginning.

My good buddy Robert Britton Lyons (Lead Guitar) who I worked with on Million Dollar Quartet in London will also be hitting the road with us. I’m also excited to have Brandon Bush (Keys/Synth) who co-produced Mongrels and Paul Stone (Drums) on board. We will be playing the record as well as a few older songs.

  • Michael Malarkey plays Cardiff’s Clwb Ifor Bach on October 23. Tickets are available from the usual outlets.
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