If you’ve heard the music by singer/songwriter Calvin Love, it’s easy to tell that he’s inspired by his dreams, his travels and art. SeagateCreative caught up with the Canadian native to talk about his creative approach to music, inspiration and the effects of meditation.
SeagateCreative: What’s a new idea you had recently that you feel will impact your creative approach to your work?
Calvin Love: I came up with some ideas about shooting specific video footage that would visually represent every song on my record. I’m getting more interested in the visual arts & aspects of performance to take things to the next level.
SeagateCreative: How do you keep your head clear of the everyday things in life so you can remain creative?
CL: I try to meditate everyday at least for 20 minutes or so. It helps me keep balance in my mind as I have a lot to think about these days. So it helps when things become overwhelming.
SeagateCreative: Once you get the perfect idea for a song, how do you take it from concept to completion?
CL: Usually almost every time I get this certain feeling like “MAN, that sounds great!” It’s hard to explain.
I trust my ears in knowing what sounds good, but 99% of the time if it doesn’t stick in my head, give me shivers or make me dance alone in my studio then I don’t usually pursue the idea.
Taking ideas to the finished form is different all the time. Sometimes it takes me weeks to finish a tune other times it takes me a couple hours. The process usually always starts with a melody on guitar or keyboard and ends when it’s completed and heard in playback after recording.
SeagateCreative: Tell us about some of the equipment you’ve used to help you creatively?
CL: Gear and equipment does help a lot, but honestly the breakthrough for me to create was finally having the confidence within myself. To know I could structure a full song just from a tiny little melody I created in my sleep, on the bus or on a walk. But, also technology has made it very easy for me to record a quick idea anywhere anytime that I would otherwise forget…and that is important.
SeagateCreative: What’s one instrument that really sparks creativity for you?
CL: Can I choose two? My Casio keyboard and guitar.
SeagateCreative: Why these two instruments?
CL: I love it because whatever melody I have humming in my brain, I can just sit down at the keyboard and make it real. I think that is really important in the process of things. After the melody comes the drumbeat and then the bass, guitar, vocals etc. It all starts there.
SeagateCreative: Have you ever had writer’s block? How did you overcome it?
CL: There was a time about 3 years ago when I was completely blocked I could not create more than a fragment of a song. It was a real confidence killer. So I decided to take a break from writing music and I decided to throw myself into my photography, it gave me space. Before I knew it I wasn’t obsessing about music, and the ideas started to come back to me. I needed a break for a minute — a refresher.
SeagateCreative: Do you have any advice for aspiring artists to help them stay creative?
CL: “Don’t think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art.” -a la Warhol
SC: What’s next from you that we can look forward to?
CL: Touring and more records from Calvin Love.