Nick Cody’s earliest memory of playing music is busking in Guildford city centre in the UK in 1975, before he even started working. As a songwriter, he’s formed ensembles for his music projects such as The Caravan of Dreams and The Small Change Diaries. His latest is The Heartache and we caught up with Nick to find out more.
Most of my work has been studying human behaviour and my experiences have inspired many of the lyrics that appear in my songs.
How would you describe your musical style?
I would describe the musical style as electric roots music, with a strong emphasis on producing great grooves, memorable melodies, and sharp lyrics. This is “music to spark the brain and make you want to tap your feet.”
Were there any particular artists or groups you took inspiration from?
I’m a great fan of artists like CC Adcock, Daryl Hall and T Bone Burnett. In recent years I also find Nick Cave’s work wonderfully inspiring, great songs with great melodies delivered with true passion. All these artists have a definite point of view and a unique creative voice. They also continue to develop their material, always the sign of a great artist.
What were you doing before making music?
I was and still am an international communication trainer where I teach therapists and coaches all over the globe, especially in Japan. Most of my work has been studying human behaviour and my experiences have inspired many of the lyrics that appear in my songs. Travelling in Japan and USA also gives me a superb opportunity to seek out some amazing instruments that have become central to the sound of the band.
Where did the name ‘Nick Cody & The Heartache’ come from?
Many of the songs are lyrically bittersweet and talk about loss and heartache, hence the name “Nick Cody & The Heartache”. My previous all acoustic band was “Nick Cody & The Caravan of Dreams”, but as this material is all electric, I thought it right that the new ensemble should have a unique name reflecting the nature of the new electric roots-based material.
If you could collaborate with any living artist, who would it be?
My dream would be to work with either Nick Cave or Tom Waits. I’ve seen Cave many times and the experience is often like a transcendental trip, never dull always provocative in the best musical manner. Tom is wonderfully unpredictable, and again always pushing the boundaries of what he does.
Tell us about your latest release. What’s the inspiration behind it?
‘Can’t Stop’ was inspired by watching and listening to many of Daryl Hall’s superb Daryl’s House episodes, where Daryl plays wonderful old school roots/soul music, always with a great groove. I imagine this song being played in a 1960s club with a great beat combo.
When did you write it and where did you record it?
This is one of 42 songs written and recorded in the last 13 months during Covid-19. I started writing in my home studio and never stopped. I’m lucky to have a great producer Carl Rosamond and a network of superb artists across the globe including Michael Ross from Nashville and Towse also from the USA. We cooperated remotely on all tracks and I’m delighted with the results.
How does your latest release represent your style?
‘Can’t Stop’ is very groove based with Rich Ferdi on percussion who I have played with for years, laying down a great groove. Michael Ross plays some superb lead guitar that makes this track really pop. Unlike previous albums, this material is all electric with an emphasis on melodies that pop and lyrics that stick in the brain. I’ve also become a massive fan of the 3 to 3.30 min song; simple and concise.
What are your hopes for the release How’s the rest of 2021 looking for you?
This is the first release for “Nick Cody & The Heartache”, and my hope is that it will alert people to our all-electric roots ensemble. I’m really happy with the material and we have at least enough tracks for two full albums “in the vault”. We’ll be playing our debut gig in the UK on October 2nd as part of the Green Eyed Records launch and details will be on nickcody.co.uk.
Finally, if you could go back in time and give yourself one piece of advice, when would it be and what would you say?
My advice to my younger self would be to get as much music tuition as possible from an early age and always invest in the very best instruments. These two ingredients really help in the writing and recording of quality tracks.
Also, collaborations and playing with other great musicians is a great way to inspire musical creation. The journey continues to be quite fascinating and it has allowed me to meet some truly amazing people all over the globe who similarly can’t imagine a world without great music.