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Interview: 2020 Must-Know - Thomas Headon

Interview: 2020 Must-Know - Thomas Headon

"19-year-old Thomas Headon won the Year 10 maths award, only has like six good songs, owns a cardboard cutout of Harry Styles, according to famousbirthdays.com he works professionally as a model," and "releases music in the hope to be verified on any form of social media" is the biography offered by London-based (but Melbourne-raised) Thomas Headon's official Spotify account. You'll find the same humour also across his social platforms, endearing Headon even more to his devoted fans who appreciate every tweet from "BLEEP BLOOP", to a Zoom meeting invitation, and an update on the current status of his hair.

Headon currently boats over 500,000 strong monthly listeners on Spotify, and his online pals repay his reciprocal friendship with fan-art, custom memes, and unconditional love. And with a second EP already on the way (Headon shared only last week that, "I am going to finish the second record within the next two weeks"), to follow up last month's boy-next-door 'The Greatest Hits' EP, it seems like there's no better time than the present to add yourself to the ranks of The Thomas Headon Fan Club.

MUST-LISTEN: 'Clean Me Up', 'Grace'.
YOU WILL LIKE, IF YOU LIKE: Role Model, Christian Leave, Dayglow, Isaac Dunbar, Conan Gray, COIN… and saying good morning and good night to your cardboard cutout of Harry Styles on the regular.

COUP DE MAIN: "Grace said she likes pot plants inside / Cold hands and tea-stained cups / Brick houses and winter when it's not cold outside / Cool socks and midnight drives and old phones, analogue clocks," you list in your song 'Grace'. What do you like?
THOMAS HEADON:
Hmmm. Idk seeing this listed to me is kinda funny because I’m not really an old analogue guy… or winter, really, lol. Much more of a summer fan and new things that work better and driving in daylight to be honest. Other than that idk I think I’m pretty easy to impress, I enjoy a lot of things. I like food a lot. Barbecue sauce and bananas are really on my mind right now. Not together though, that wouldn’t taste very good.

CDM: In 'Butterflies', you say, "I still get butterflies / When you're inside my mind / And I only wonder if you get the same." Is having uncertainty over if your feelings are mutual/reciprocated the hardest thing about forming nascent relationships?
THOMAS:
I think for me, definitely, yeah. When it comes to things like relationships and people, I find communication really difficult; it definitely doesn’t come naturally. Which is weird because I genuinely really enjoy people, but I think I hold back quite a lot on people as a whole because I’m unsure of how they feel / think of me... usually before I’ve even given them a chance to know me lol. Anyway, I’m quite shy; I hate it.

CDM: What was running through your mind while writing 'Car Window'?
THOMAS:
I wish I had a more interesting answer for this question, but sadly when writing songs I’m usually just thinking more about what the production will be. Production really interests me and I love that side of things once the song is actually written and recorded. 'Car Window' was one of my favourites on this EP because I wrote it really quickly about an encounter I had with this GORGEOUS girl at a red light, but the production side of it I was thinking of immediately. Think as soon as I wrote the chorus I already knew that after the, "How will I know?", I would put a higher pitched, heavily tuned, "How will I know?". Y'know !!!!!

CDM: How does your music-making process work?
THOMAS:
Right now, it’s constantly changing, which is cool, and I’m glad I haven’t settled myself on 'one way' to make music yet. This EP was largely made by myself and my very talented manager / producer Max. Five out of six songs were me writing lyrics to basic production ideas I made in my bedroom, then sending him the project files, and he would really make it much more of a finished product, adding a couple elements and giving it a mix. I think doing that really made me create 'my own sound' and learn what that means to me which is a really cool way to start. Now I’m working on a second project and I’m doing it much more session-based, working with only a few producers I like working with, and moving kinda in a different direction. My 'process' has changed a lot now, and because of it, I’m making different music. I’m super happy with it.

CDM: Do you write your lyrics specifically for the songs, or do you write poems or prose and then evolve them into song-form?
THOMAS:
Nah, definitely write them specifically for the songs. I’m not even much of a lyric guy, like I don’t listen to music and go, "Aaah love these lyrics." I’ve never been into poetry much either. I wish I could be though, like, I’ve tried so hard because it seems so cool but sadly I just don’t find it interesting enough lol.

CDM: Lyrically, what's your favourite song that you’ve written?
THOMAS:
Hard one, but probably, 'Her'. It’s the most personal and straight-up honest of the EP. I really like that though, I think that’s what makes songwriting interesting to me. Lyrically, as well, it ~clearly~ alludes to another song of mine that I’ve written, which I’m proud of myself for. My old english teachers would like that.

CDM: What do you think is the difference between a good song and a great song?
THOMAS:
THE VIBES. I love the vibes. It’s my favourite word. I don’t know what exactly the vibes are, but neither does anyone. When a song has good vibes, it’s a good song. When a song has great vibes now, whoa, it’s a great song. Below I’ve included some songs with great vibes. They’re pretty popular so it makes sense that they’re great songs with great vibes, but if you haven’t heard them I strongly recommend them.
- 'Broke' by Samm Henshaw
- 'Sincerity Is Scary' by The 1975
- 'Dead Celebrities' by Easy Life
- 'Theme From New York, New York' by Frank Sinatra

CDM: At what age did you write your very first song ever, and what was it about?
THOMAS:
Hahaha omg I think I was like 15. It was a song called 'Six' and it was about this really nice new acoustic guitar my mum had just got me. The melody was a straight-up copy of an Ed Sheeran song too. It’s never seeing the light of day, I think I still have the voice memo on my computer somewhere lol. It was super fun though, I remember the feeling of when I finished it, I felt like I had written ‘Tears Of Heaven’. Took me a good year-and-a-half of writing before I wrote something I was confident to show people though. That was a good time.

CDM: What do you hope for people to take away from listening to your music?
THOMAS:
Pffffft idk. I’m inspired by a lot of music I listen to... so I think it’d be sick if some people listened to my music and went, "Huh, that's really cool, I wanna make something like that." It’s cool to occasionally see people message me asking questions about production for this song, or lyrics for this song, and how I did this, or that. I try and reply to all them because I’m still in that same position with so many artists and bands too.

CDM: If T.H.O.M.A.S. H.E.A.D.O.N. were an acronym, what would each letter stand for?
THOMAS:
Thomas Headon Only Makes Amazing Songs. He Even Adds Drums On Neighbours.
Idk why neighbours is there, I couldn’t think of anything else

CDM: What’s on your bucket-list?
THOMAS:
Genuinely have been actually wanting to make a note in my phone for so long of all the things I wanna do. Not a bucket-list because I think that’s lame, but just shit I wanna do list, y'know??? I’ve wanted to learn to backflip for so long. I also really wanna learn to speak German because I have two German managers and idk what they’re saying to each other half the time. There’s so much. Suppose now is the perfect time to learn it all to be honest...

CDM: If you could steal one thing without consequence what would it be?
THOMAS:
Super weird, but probably the Queen's Crown Jewels. Not for any reason, like, I don’t even really think it's cool, I’d just wanna see how easily a bunch of old people freak out over something so treasured going missing lol. Also, would be hype to see how much the Government would pay to get it back. Talking about this sounds illegal I feel like someone’s watching me type this, I’m moving on.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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CDM: What's your favourite Harry Styles song and why?
THOMAS:
WHO WROTE THIS QUESTION WHY WOULD YOU ASK ME THIS THIS IS SO DIFFICULT but right now it’s 'Cherry' :) As much as I love 'Falling', 'Cherry' is superior currently. Although, saying that, I saw 'Falling' live at the Brit Awards and that was some out-of-body experience. So maybe I’m wrong. Either way, 'Cherry' or 'Falling' are my favourite right now. Harry does well with those sad-time bangers.

CDM: If you were a country, what would be your national anthem?
THOMAS:
'Duncan' by Slim Dusty. It’s wholesome and makes me wish I had more friends called Duncan. Also it’s hilarious to think that children in schools would have to sing it at every assembly. Please listen to it and imagine that. Your day will get instantly better.

CDM: Do you miss Australia?
THOMAS:
Yeah heaps. For obvious reasons being I have a lot of friends and my family is in Australia, but also this winter here in the UK just made me really, really miss warm weather and the beach lol. It’s cool though, I think going back there for Christmas and other occasions will make me treasure my time there a lot more, with the location, but more with my friends as well. Especially considering it’s so different to where I am now, again, people-wise, and location of course. I miss making music there too… I’m very grateful for the position I’m in here in London but I was properly left alone in Australia. Literally had no responsibilities other than sitting in my bedroom making music.

CDM: What are your top five necessities for isolation/quarantine/lockdown?
THOMAS:
Top five, okay.
- Books. The internet gets boring sometimes. Books are calming and actually perfect for a time where you’re legally being forced to do absolutely nothing. I’m not much of a story-reader, but if you’re looking for some creative inspiration, I’d recommend 'Limit Yourself and Unleash Your Creativity' by Ralph Burkhardt. Interesting stuff.
- Alcohol. Not if you’re underage. Or driving. But if you’re neither of those things then it’s pretty self-explanatory.
- ZOOM BECAUSE YOU WANNA CALL YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY AND SEE THEM AND TELL THEM YOU MISS THEM AND LOVE THEM.
- For me, antihistamines. I get bad hayfever and right now we’re going into spring, so the pollen is strong, my friends. Now is NOT the time to get ill, so get them antihistamines to control that sniff and be feeling great.
- Music. That’s super lame and vague, but I was just listening to Stormzy and thought, "Well, not just Stormzy, it’s music in general that's keeping me happy," so whoever you get your music from make sure you're listening ! Keep the tunes pumping !

CDM: You’re one of our 'must-know’ artist picks for 2020… who are yours?
THOMAS:
Am I actually? That’s really sick. I feel like I have so many talented friends who everyone should be checking out, so I’m gonna try and name as many as I can in no particular order::::
- Slush Puppy. This is my friend Sam. He’s not backed or pushed by anyone and just makes music in his garage for his high school friends. They love it and so will you because it’s actually sick. He’s also only nineteen, which is insane for what he’s done purely by himself.
- Nabes is my very talented friend and producer of 'Clean Me Up', Stephen Barnes. He’s just put out his first track because he’s super bored in quarantine but I’ve heard the rest of his music and I love it. Love everything he does. I wanna be Stephen.
- Matilda Mann is one of my best friends here in London and she makes very calming acoustic songs that I wind down to. Her first EP came out a lil bit ago, my personal favourite is 'The Loch Ness Monster'.
- Maya Delilah is also one of my best buds and her and Stephen make music that I really like. She has a song called ‘Gato’ that’s sick. Think it’s about her cat lmao.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Watch a video for 'Grace' below...

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