Named by fellow Dublin stars Fontaines D.C. as one of their “favourite artists in the world”, Paddy Hanna is a relatively new name with bags of experience; previously sharing stages with Burt Bacharach, B.C. Camplight, Joan as a Policewoman, Billy Ocean and Cate Le Bon to name but a few.
Now, the spotlight is firmly on him as he prepares for the release of his upcoming album The Hill on 16th October.
Produced by Dan Fox of Girl Band who also features throughout alongside bandmate Adam Faulkner as well as Daniel Fitzpatrick and Jill Redmond, The Hill is as Paddy says, “an internal musical about how the past and the present exist at the same time in our minds. It deals with the struggles of mental health, the sometimes difficult search for happiness and the moral conflict of growing up in Catholic Ireland.”
Ahead of the release, we caught up with Paddy to learn more about his musical background.
Tell us a bit about yourself and how long you’ve been making music for?
Before properly discovering my aptitude for music I used to sing alone in a disused playhouse at the back of our garden, one day I went there to sing and discovered a hive of wasps, I was stung several times. At 15 I was given a harmonica by a friend, the first song I learnt was the Eastenders theme tune, I never looked back from there.
At what point in your life did you decide to make a career out of your music, and what influenced that decision?
To this day I still feel like an imposter calling myself a musician, and so I can’t really say I ever had that moment where I proclaimed “music is now my career”, but I suppose it was having a head full of ideas and nothing to lose that started things for me.
What is the main source of influence for your songwriting?
A disorganised mind is a very helpful writing tool when it comes to music, I go as far as calling it a gift. Distractions can become wonderful influences, letting the mind wander until it finds a creative home. I am occasionally envious of those who have the laser focus to sit at a desk for 8 hours and write like impassioned robots, but sure if we were all the same things would be awfully dull.
What is something you’ve learned about yourself through making music?
I am a stubborn goat who can take a good beating, which by the way, is very helpful.
Is there anything you wish you’d known when you first got into the music industry?
That beer is not an acceptable form of payment, but payment without beer is also unacceptable.
Who are some of your favourite upcoming artists from Dublin?
I always have time for Naoise Roo, a wonderful singer and writer based in Dublin. I was very fortunate to have collaborated with her recently on a track with my other band Autre Monde, who indecently, you should also check out.
What would your dream tour & rider look like?
A Guided By Voices support tour, I know I would probably get bottled by their famously inebriated fans, but I just want to get pissed with Robert Pollard and drink from his fabled cooler of ice cold beers. Simple pleasures and what not.
If your music was to soundtrack any film or TV show, which would you choose?
A popular football related show, I would take great pleasure in having a song that is an anthem for footie fans despite knowing nothing about the sport.
What’s the bucket list goal for you as an artist?
I want to achieve a certain level of gravitas, so that I might someday wear a cravat and call people “darling” without looking like a total arsehole.