Stan Walker’s raw, distinctive voice captured the people of Australia in 2009 when he won the title of the last season of Australian Idol. His career instantly took off after signing a contract with Sony Music Australia, receiving multi ARIA nominations for his past singles and albums. Walker has also produced platinum singles such as ‘Black Box’ and ‘Loud’, featured on his first published album ‘Introducing Stan Walker’.
After a few years of travelling, writing and judging on New Zealand’s X-Factor, the idea of producing ‘Truth and Soul’ came to mind. Each song displays Walker’s unique voice and will undoubtedly capture his audience like never before.
1. Your 5th studio album is due to be released this week! What inspired you to re-interpret soul classics from legends such as Ray Charles and Bob Marley?
Well first of all, I love them. They are some of my idols, like Bob Marley, he is just incredible. He is everything that I want to be, in terms of what an artist does by producing something powerful for the people. Ray Charles is a legend within soul music and I feel he has the same impact for his audience and for the music industry.
This album was a bit of a surprise for me, because I have been doing so much in the past three years, I have been overseas, writing new songs and recording. There was pressure for me to release; people would say “C’mon Stan we need something out” and I would say ‘I’m not ready!’
Then the idea of a soul album was mentioned and I thought, ‘no way.’
I then started thinking that I am constantly uploading covers and singing this music and these songs, so why not make an album of it? I have had to put my other music on hold, but I feel that this album is for me and it has been a complete surprise of events, but I am loving it.
2. How would you explain the meaning behind the title ‘Truth and Soul’?
That is basically what it is, the truth of the lyrics and lyrics from the soul. The songs were written in a particular time and place where it meant something. I wish I wrote the lyrics, because I can relate to them.
3. These artists on the album are obviously some of your biggest inspirations, how do you personally reach out/inspire others particularly the younger demographic that may have a similar up bringing to yourself?
I believe that music is the most powerful tool given and through music you can actually communicate and change people. It looks beyond colour, race, background…anything. It is a universal spoken language, even if you can’t understand it, you can still feel it.
5. Well, you were voted as New Zealand’s most popular celebrity early in 2015 amongst young people, so you obviously are an inspiration! What does this mean to you?
It’s trippy! (laughs), I don’t think what other people may think. I am constantly just thinking how I can take my music and lyrics to the next level. Although, it is amazing to think that all these kids and all these people have said my name as their inspiration and favourite celebrity.
6. ‘Truth and Soul’ definitely shows a high level of mature and raw talent, which displays your growth within the industry. How do you think your 5th studio album differentiates from your previous 4?
It is definitely a lot more raw; it’s not like pop or producing something for the radio. I get to actually sing songs written by my idols, which have so much power, it is awesome.
7. Now for the question we are all curious about, will you be touring anytime soon!?
Yes definitely, it is the main thing I am focusing on at the moment. A lot of people will listen to the album, but the one thing I know is that I can do it a whole lot better in real life. Anyone can do it on an album, but I want to showcase what I can do live.