Taking on the world is one tough task. With so many artists striving to hit different milestones in the music industry, it can be hard to stand out against the crowd – but Sophie Clark is definitely making waves. Frontwoman of the band Clark & Company, she’s on her way to conquering the world with her brothers and friends by her side.
Read on to take a step into Sophie’s world!
When did you all realize that you wanted to pursue music professionally together?
Well, in our freshman year of high school, my brothers and I were in a hard rock cover band. It wasn’t until I started writing songs for the band that I realized this was something we could do uniquely and with our own sound. When I realized that I wanted to write acoustic songs instead of rock songs, I decided to ask my brothers if they wanted to form an original band separate from the cover band. Eventually, Clark & Company became our main gig and I started writing songs like crazy. After our first album, which had more of a singer-songwriter sound, we decided to put our current saxophone player, Cameron Thelander, in the band. This gave the band that bluesy, jazzy feel we have today.
How would you describe the group’s musical sound?
I think I just described it, bluesy and jazzy with a singer songwriter backbone. A lot of our songs range widely in different styles and sounds, but I think that’s also something that brings our sound together. Some people have even called it “Gypsy music.” I kind of like that.
What would you say is the most challenging thing about making music in a group with people you’ve known for so long?
I’d say the arguing with siblings during practice, but as we’ve gotten older it’s not so much of a problem as it used to be. Usually Cameron is the buffer, but we just had a practice with only the three of us and it went pretty well.
You’ve been nominated twice for the USA Songwriting Competition and International Music Awards, is there anything you do to get into the songwriting groove?
Songs come to me when they want to. The best ones come from some far away place in my mind and come singing out of my mouth before I even know it.
What inspires you the most musically?
I grew up with Bob Dylan, and The Band, and all those guys so that’s always in the back of my mind. I also have a fascination with Southeast, so I’ve gotten into old Nina Simone-like jazz songs. I think both are huge influences and play into each other constantly.
What was your first live performance as a group like?
I was probably nervous, but I always feel better with people on stage with me. My biggest struggle has always been the talking thing. Sometimes it works and sometimes I still struggle with it. If I could just get onstage and sing, that would be ideal for me. I’m a very shy, introverted frontman.
Who or what motivates you to succeed?
My super-supportive parents. They’ve been here since the very beginning, and for that we’re so grateful.
The group’s first album Three Swords was released in 2014, and you’ve all come a long way since then – how would you say you’ve evolved as musicians since then?
I think we’ve definitely fallen into a specific style that we’re comfortable with now. At first, it was sort of just trying things out. I think Josephine Had A Dream, our newest album, best represents our sound as a whole, even though it’s still all over the board.
So far, what’s been the most memorable moment of Clark & Company’s musical journey?
For me, it’s the people who come out to the shows. I love how music simply brings people together, and I get to see people who’ve been in my life that I probably wouldn’t have connected with often if not for the band.
When times get challenging, what keeps you moving forward?
We are all in different, music-less majors, Cooper, Graphic Design, Simon, Creative Media, Cameron, Sound Engineering, and me, Creative Writing and Creative Nonfiction. We all have our own passions we want to pursue outside of the band. Scheduling practices/shows can get tough sometimes, but we all find the time for it because we all still want to keep creating music. Our goal never was to get big, and we’re happy just playing on the side in our home town.
What impact do you hope Clark & Company’s music has on your audiences?
I hope it’s something people can turn on and feel a human quality of comfort and connection.
Is there anything you’d like to say to your fans?
I have fans? Kidding. Fans—You don’t have to listen to us, but if you do, I hope you enjoy it at least a little bit.
Are you excited to hear what Clark & Company have in store? Let us know by tweeting us at @CelebMix!