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Interview: Alfie Templeman on his new 'Happiness In Liquid Form' EP.

Interview: Alfie Templeman on his new 'Happiness In Liquid Form' EP.

17-year-old Bedfordshire-born Alfie Templeman began playing drums a decade ago, followed by a resolve to teach himself guitar, bass, and production at the age of thirteen. Having released debut single 'Like An Animal' at fifteen, he's been prolific ever since, with new EP 'Happiness In Liquid Form' just released (and his fifth EP already finished and on the way).

Coup De Main spoke to Templeman about his new EP, working with The Vaccines' Justin Young, and his songwriting process...

COUP DE MAIN: The imagery of the phrase 'Happiness In Liquid Form' as a metaphor is great. What made you want to name the EP after it / the song?
ALFIE TEMPLEMAN:
Thanks! Well, it’s kinda following the whole tradition where I pick out the coolest song title and name the EP after it. 'Happiness In Liquid Form' basically had the coolest name, just like my song 'Don’t Go Wasting Time' did on my last EP of the same name.

CDM: Did you learn anything from your experience writing 'Happiness In Liquid Form' with The Vaccines' Justin Young?
ALFIE:
In terms of lyrics, I learnt a lot about how to revolve a phrase around a whole song. 'Happiness in liquid form' became like 100 more words that turned into lyrics in such a short time because we centred the attention around that 'lil sentence.

CDM: In 'Maybe This Is Time' you say about the aftermath of love: "Nobody heals this quick." What do you think is the best medicine to help with the healing process when it comes to love?
ALFIE:
I use a cup of tea for healing everything! It calms anxiety, depression, anger, and heartbreak. It really is medicine.

CDM: What was running through your mind while writing 'My Best Friend'?
ALFIE:
Nothing really! Sounds dull but I record while I write and I become so focused I forget what I’m doing. So I can’t really remember making 'My Best Friend'.

CDM: Lyrically, what's your favourite song that you’ve written?
ALFIE:
Hmmm, I like 'Don’t Go Wasting Time' because it’s really straight up. I see it as a set of instructions on how to avoid heartbreak.

CDM: How does your songwriting process work?
ALFIE:
Honestly, I’d really like to venture into writing better lyrics because normally I prioritise the music. I have a lot of great poems so I’ll try turning them into tracks.

CDM: Having started playing drums at seven, before teaching yourself guitar, bass and production at thirteen, do you think that being self-taught has had an impact on how you approach songwriting?
ALFIE:
Songwriting-wise, I just accidentally come up with hooks on my guitar when I’m messing around on it. I record them then add rhythm guitar and then bass, drums, percussion, etc. Last but not least I structure everything, get up Voice Notes and sing some ideas to the instrumental, then hit record. I think being self-taught at everything but drums just helps me to learn by myself and test what I can do as a person. I’ve used auto-tune and cheap microphones (I used my iPod touch as a mic for every instrument and vocal for three years) as a tool to strengthen my voice and GarageBand as a tool to strengthen my playing ability.  

CDM: What was your very first earliest musical memory?
ALFIE:
My dad playing tunes on a CD played in the lounge and me hitting pots and pans to it.

CDM: At what age did you write your very first song ever, and what was it about?
ALFIE:
I don’t actually remember! I must’ve been about one!

CDM: What are five pieces of advice you wish you could have told your younger self?
ALFIE:
Don’t listen to criticism, do what you want if you enjoy it, keep doing what you’re doing, keep being nice, and stop eating cucumber because it is GROSS.
 
CDM: If A.L.F.I.E. were an acronym, what would each letter stand for?
ALFIE:
A Lovely Fellow In England.

CDM: And what’s on your bucket-list?
ALFIE:
Just rock out!

Alfie Templeman's new 'Happiness In Liquid Form' EP is out now. Click here to listen.

Watch the 'Obvious Guy' music video below...

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