Kenny Hughes- Chats To Us About His New Track Namely ‘Midnight Man’ And Working With Evert Snyman Again
Interview By Duzzy Clayton
South African travelling Blues Rock Singer-Songwriter Kenny Hughes has been a Blues & Rock Musician for the past 6 years, having an amazing time meeting new people, seeing new places and playing my music at great venues on his journey. Kenny loves the whole experience and vibe … there’s nothing else he would rather do!
Kenny released 6 singles to date, with his 7th single ‘Midnight Man’ set for release on Friday 3 February. To date 3 of his single proudly made it to the no 1 slot on the SA TOP 40 with MiX FM (two even made it to the TOP 50 tracks of 2021). Kenny was also a finalist in the US Banger Music Awards, and enjoyed radio premieres, features and chart entries in the UK, as well as countries like Germany, Canada and Australia. In addition to radio plays globally, he was also fortunate to participate in podcasts and interviews globally, and featured on TV shows like Expresso Live, Die Groot Ontbyt and Doodgewone Jo with Jo Black.
Hi Kenny, Welcome back to Fanbase Music Magazine, it’s great to chat with you again ahead of your new single ‘Midnight Man’.
HI! Thanks so much for having me back. Additionally for the continued support. I really appreciate it.
First of all, can you tell us how you came to that song title and what the song is about?
The idea for Midnight Man came to me while I was still briefly living in Bloemfontein. It was ahead of a festival, “Rockin Bloem” and I had a few friends over who were to join me at the fest. We were just sitting around and I was strumming through a few chord progressions and randomly sang what would become the chorus, “I’m a midnight man” and my good friend Phillru Van Achterbergh told me he liked the sound of that. Coupled with the chord progression and funky rhythm, he suggested I roll with it. The song was complete not long after that. That’s essentially what the song is about, the fact that I do most of my best work after midnight. When the rest of the world is asleep, our creativity as musicians keeps us awake.
Where was the track recorded and who worked on it?
As with most of my singles to date, Midnight Man was recorded at Pariah Studios alongside the one and only Evert Snyman. The two of us made it what it is today.
You seem to like working with the legend that is Evert Snyman, can you please tell us what he brings to the table and what it is like to work on music with him?
He’s a creative before anything else. Spending any amount of time with the man will reveal that fact in no time at all. What he brings to the table is a fresh perspective. Most of the song is completed by the time I get to the studio, Evert just adds his signature flavor and I love him for that.
How has the track differed from your last single ‘Destiny’, or any other great body of work you have released?
It’s funny, but to me Destiny and Midnight Man are quite similar in the sense that they’re both pretty much what I see my sound as having developed in to. I love the funky feel of both tracks and, for now at least, I think that’s my signature sound. I asked Evert which genre he thinks the track fall in to and, to paraphrase, he said, “it’s Kenny Hughes man!”
Will you be releasing an album or is it only singles at the moment?
At the moment it seems to be the way to go. Bite sized nuggets of information are all the general public seems to consume currently and so releasing singles fits quite nicely in to that scheme of things. Who knows what the future holds. Sponsors, I’m talking to you!
Can you please tell us what your writing process is like?
Simple. Really simple. When a guitar riff or vocal line pops in to my head, I put the voice recorder on my phone to work. Random chords, riffs, lyrical lines etc. follow and when I feel like I’ve run the tap dry, I listen to the recording and pick out the parts I like. I’m pretty sure that’s how a lot of musos do it.
For people who are not familiar with you yet, can you give us a brief answer on where you grew up and living now and how you got into music?
I’ve lived all over the place. I come from Johannesburg originally, but we moved around a lot. To date I’ve lived in 22 different houses, both with my family and on my own. I got in to music because of my parents. They’re avid fans of the likes of CCR, Dire Straits, Clapton, etc. So I grew up around very guitar-driven tunes. I guess it was all just a matter of time.
Photo By Gawd Squad Entertainment
What sort of music did you grow up on and how would you describe the sound of music you make??
Mostly classic rock. Only at a later stage did I get in to the Blues and finally funk. I’d say my sound is a blend of Blues/Rock/Funk. Thanks to friends though, my palate has diversified to include basically everything, barring Pop for the most part. Pop tends to annoy me.
Can you explain a typical gig experience if our readers were to attend one of your shows?
It all really depends on the gig they attend. Being a full time musician is quite tasking and I therefore play wherever they’ll have me. For this reason, some shows are more laid back, others are more powerful, and finally, shows with the full band are just the most electric and vibey. Come check it out for yourselves, folks, and you tell me!
Thank you for doing this interview, do you have any last messages for our readers and your fans?
Thank you so much. It’s a cliché for a reason, but without the support, none of this would be possible. Truly, and sincerely, thank you for all my fans and for all the support over the last few years! To bigger and better things!
Photo By Roxanne van Oudtshoor