Minor Soul – Interview And More

Minor Soul is an acoustic-pop band created by two young brothers, Jack and Max Wagner, aged 20 and 18.


Born in London of English and American parents, they grew up in a high-rise overlooking Hong Kong’s storied waterfront, raiding their father’s collection of Rock classics – everything from the Velvet Underground and Bowie to Jeff Buckley.


Add an insatiable hunger for the latest sounds coming out of Europe and the US and you have a singer-songwriter duo who, despite their youth, have been experimenting, performing and writing together for years, and who display a deep sense of song crafting tradition – influenced by the likes of Dylan, the Beatles and Coldplay.


Read our exclusive interview with Jack and Max from Minor Soul on the day they releaes their first single, and share some of their experiences of working with Dave Stewart.


UE: Introduce yourselves to our readers who don’t know who Minor Soul are:

Jack: We are two brothers who grew up in Hong Kong and we make acoustic pop music.


UE: Your first single is out today, that must mark quite a milestone in the MS journey, looking back, how has the journey been?

Max: Thanks a lot. Yea, it’s pretty amazing to think back on the past two years and try to put the pieces together as to how all of this came together. There have been times when we felt on top of the world, other times when we thought we weren’t worth much, but in the end, we are extremely proud of the journey.

Jack: We’re lucky to have a dedicated fan base too. The whole Minor Soul team has put in lots of hard work, but it’s so worth it. And it’s been a blast.


UE: You are already being compared to Simon and Garfunkel in so many ways, how does that make you both feel?

Jack: We love it! They have definitely helped shape the harmony aspect of our sound, and our look to a certain extent, especially with our black-turtleneck look. But I feel like the songwriting itself is really different to Simon and Garfunkel. We definitely have a more modern songwriting style. But it’s a great complement and honor to even be compared to them.


UE: What has been your biggest pinch me moment on the MS journey so far?

Jack: Probably working with Dave Stewart or with Toby Gad. We can’t decide to be honest. Those guys have influenced us so much, they are both so talented and it was mind-blowing to work with them.

Max: We learnt lots from Dave about the whole process of becoming a developed artist; it goes without saying that he has plenty of experience in that field. Toby is simply a magician, and the nicest guy on Earth.


UE: Dave Stewart discovered you on YouTube I beleive, can you tell us what happened next?

Jack: That’s right. He heard some songs we put up online and invited us out to Los Angeles in July 2011 to work with him; it was great. He produced a lot of tracks, we co-wrote a couple, and he introduced us to so many inspiring musicians and artists like Joss Stone, Orianthi, Michael Bradford…

Max: We hadn’t even played our first real gig yet at that time so we were absorbing tons of advice and information from Dave.


UE: Has working with DS changed your approach to writing, recording, playing in any way?

Max: Without a doubt, and we’ve learnt a lot since then, working with other people. Dave has music in his blood so the second he picks up a guitar, a song is in the making. He gave us a very cool vibe, and sometimes now, Jack and I will do what he does and literally be in the middle of a party or something, pick up a guitar, and write. Dave’s production on Beneath My Skin helped guide our sound for the future too.

UE: How many tracks did Dave work on with you?

Jack: I think about 12.

UE: Your single Beaneath My Skin is out today, tell us about the tracks you’ve chosen for it…

Max: Actually we are just releasing Beneath My Skin as the single track, and then we’ll be releasing more singles very soon, one after the other.

Jack: Beneath My Skin is a very personal song about my girlfriend, and I think at the heart of the song is the message that sometimes we have to take a step back and realize just how important some people are to us.

UE: And when can we expect to hear a full album, or do you think you’ll just release a series of singles \ EP’s.

Max: For an album, still not sure. But we’re going to be releasing plenty of singles. We’ve got one scheduled for release in December also, which is really exciting. We’re aiming for one or two singles a month I think. It’s about time we got some music out there for people to have on their iPods!


UE: You’re doing a few live dates in the USA soon, can we expect a visit to the UK in the near future?

Jack: We would love to go to the UK to play some shows. We were born in London so it would be a nice homecoming for us! Would definitely catch a Chelsea match if we go back too.


UE: Is there anything else you’d like to say?

Max: Check out our new music video for “Streets of New York” which just came out. You can see it on YouTube. We wrote the song with Toby Gad, who produced it.

Jack: And stay away from drugs!


UE: Thanks for chatting to us MS.

Max: Thank you!


Beneath My Skin is out now to download on iTunes here. You can follow Minor Soul on Facebook here, twitter here and visit their website here.


Beneath My Skin

Streets Of New York

Beneath My Skin - Lyrics

In every letter you write,

In every letter you write,

And every word you say,

You shine onto me a new light,

And fight all the darkness away.

And every time you break down,

And every kiss you give,

I’m reminded of all that’s at stake,

And all that we have to live for.


My heart is an open box,

For you to fill up,

With letters and broken clocks,

So we forget the time.

And I try to forget the world,

That we reside in,

By singing about the girl,

Who lives beneath my skin.


In every smile you bring,

And every heartbeat you steal,

You give me new songs to sing,

And show me new ways to feel.

And every moment you’re gone,

And every time I’m away,

I feel my mind come undone,

And I struggle with words to say that…


My heart is an open book,

For you to write in,

Stories of thieves and crooks,

Who stole people’s hearts.

And I try to forget the world,

That we reside in,

By singing about the girl,

Who lives beneath my skin.


Oh Oh Oh, who lives beneath my skin. (repeat)


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Beneath My Skin Single –

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