At CelebMix we love celebrating new music from rising artists and we have a treat for you today! To celebrate Pete Gardiner’s new single “Pretty Smiles” we partnered with him to offer our readers and Pete’s fans an incredible giveaway. You could win a shirt with lyrics from Pete’s single! Just retweet this article, tag CelebMix and Pete and don’t forget to follow us both on Twitter!
Pete’s single isn’t his first, but it’s definitely one of his strongest. The lyrics are incredible, the sound is a bit intoxicating, and his voice draws you in so that you both understand and feel the emotions he is singing about. The music video for Pretty Smiles is absolutely breathtaking, the setting is something Pete planned himself – as he wrote the single he has a vision for what would accompany it, and it fits perfectly.
We did an interview with Pete about his single and more about his love for music to share with all of you!
Tell us the most exciting part of writing your new song; “Pretty Smiles”.
Well the lyrics were written a few years ago, after a memorable evening with someone. It was about someone who I knew I wasn’t going to have any kind of future with, but who I didn’t want to forget either. It was written very quickly. You can hear an urgency in it, like the whole song is one long rant that builds up until you think it might burst. That’s the way it came out of me, almost improvised. I remember sitting with the guitar singing out the first thing that came into my head and a lot of what poured out became the final lyrics. That’s rare for me. A flash of inspiration like that usually only gets me a chorus or a few lines of a verse and I have to work hard at the rest.
You debut single “All These Things” was wildly successful; do you plan on having one overall sound or do you still want to experiment more as you continue songwriting?
It’s difficult for me to have an overall vision for the sound. I’m usually quite laid back about it. The most important thing is that the words have room to breathe. I like the sound of All These Things, but then a lot of people I’ve spoken too have told me that they much prefer the acoustic version that I play live. That’s been said about a few of my songs and I think it’s a sign that I shouldn’t get too swept up in polished pop productions. I’d hate for people to lose sight of the fact that at the heart of all this there’s just one guy with his guitar in his bedroom writing songs.
The video for “Pretty Smiles” is set in the romantic 1920’s, what about that time period stood out for you as the perfect setting for this video?
Well it’s funny, you’re asking what about the 1920’s stood out to me. In the last interview I did, I was asked why I chose a 1950’s setting and another person asked why I chose the 1940’s. I’m glad people don’t know what decade it really is because I like the idea that it’s not any decade. It can be whatever time period you want. It could be like a parallel universe where the glamour of old Hollywood never died out. I just wanted the atmosphere to be nostalgic. The kind of place where James Cagney might shoot somebody who owed him money or Marilyn Monroe has her own table on permanent reserve.
That environment just seemed to lend itself to the story of the song. A bartender falling in love with a dead movie star is a great metaphor for wanting someone who is unobtainable for whatever reason. I’m glad we were able to bring the idea to life the way we did.
Your debut album comes out this year, what do you want your fans to know about you before we hear the entire album?
There’s not a lot to know, I’m just a songwriter living in a caravan, and all I want out of this life is bottle of wine that costs more than six pounds and a beautiful wife who lets me drink it. Who knows, if people like the album maybe someday I’ll get both.
What song was the most challenging for you to write? And the most rewarding?
There’s a song called James Dean that took a long time to come together. It deals with devastating long term effects experimenting with drugs can have on somebody who had such a bright future ahead of them. The subject matter was sensitive and hard to penetrate correctly with words. I had the chorus written for two years before finally settling on the direction of the rest of it.
The most rewarding songs are the ones written specifically for other people. A long time ago I had a song called Robert Street. I wrote it for a girl who was going through a very hard time. I recorded it for her and if I was at her house I’d sing it to her live. It’s a nice thing to be able to do for someone you care about.
What do you hope fans take away from “Pretty Smiles”?
There’s some sort of frustration and a desperation in it that might resonate with people. Every now and again somebody will come along and set you on fire, and I don’t know but maybe this song could help a few people put out the flames.
You can watch Pete’s incredible music video here- it’s definitely unique which is part of what makes watching it feel truly like an experience.
Now that you’ve heard his single, watched the video, and found out more about him; don’t forget to share this post to be entered to win one of his special lyric shirts! It would be an awesome addition to your fall wardrobe.
What do you think of Pretty Smiles? Tweet us at @CelebMix and let us know.