interview with nick schofield

Nick Schofield teams up with practice on November 11th for a meditative lullaby where Schofield showcases a first listen to his new project, Water Sine.

Tell us a bit about your project Water Sine

Water Sine started in June 2016 as a way to create music more fluidly, using somewhat specific production parameters that guided the compositions. I used just one synthesizer (Yamaha PSS-270), one effect pedal (BOSS RV-3) and an Edirol field-recorder. Even though I tracked with Ableton Live, I treated the DAW like a 4-track recorder, so I had limited channels and editing options. The music itself is very much my way of coping with insomnia and tapping my nocturnal creative energy.

How does your work tie into noise meditation?

It doesn’t really tie directly to noise meditation, but I made the music to help coax me towards sleep, so the music has the intended effect of relaxation and release.

This is your first time producing work under your personal name, Nick Schofield. Why now? Why this project?

That’s true, I’ve always worked on music under a moniker or as a band, so this is somewhat exposed solo territory for me. Having grown up going to galleries and exhibitions with my mom, I always held high regard for artists who go by their own name. Personally, it implies acceptance. This music is ‘me’, it just felt like the most natural nomenclature.

What is your relationship to meditation?

I actually don’t really meditate, I probably should though. A doctor said I have anxiety issues a while back, and suggested practicing. Making this music is super meditative for me.

When did you start listening to music ?

My brother got me interested in music when I was 9, but moving to Montreal and studying Electroacoustics broke my mould of what music ‘should’ be. It was around then I started shedding a lot of preconceptions and just sought simplicity; all my my early ideas felt too crowded, I wanted something more singular. It took time to actualize those ambitions.

When did you start producing music?

Again, my brother urged me to give production a shot, he said I should try Garageband and I quickly became fascinated with being able to create whole compositions on my own. Before that, I was ‘just’ a drummer. After a while, people started describing my music in really similar terms, basically as being very watery, so I unintentionally found my sound. I gravitated to the idea of being a producer when I learned about Daniel Lanois and his career, he’s such a creative conduit, that’s my aspiration.

What have been big moments for you, producing, playing, or listening to music?

Hm, that’s a tough question, I’ve had some really special life-moments with music. When I was quite young I got to play a ripping drum solo to a sold-out Roy Thompson Hall, that definitely sparked something in me. Since then, what feels ‘big’ is when a musical dream comes true, like opening for Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith, Bing & Ruth and Hauschka – these are artists I genuinely admire and appreciate. Playing alongside them felt monumental, like I should keep going… it’s not for nought.

How does space factor into your music and how do you think Never Apart will influence your work on the 11th?

Location is really important! I like David Byrne’s idea that a space actually inspires what kind of music befits it; he contrasts how cathedrals enhance choral music, but the boxiness of CBGB is perfect for punk. A space works on so many levels, it’s impossible to surmise all the elements, but Never Apart is pretty ideal since it’s a place that fosters appreciation for experimental arts and welcomes community projects.

What upcoming projects are you excited about?

This project! This is just the listening-party portion of Water Sine, so I’m excited to really release it in 2018. Otherwise, I’m on the edge of my seat to finally finish an album that has been in the works for almost three years – that’s for my other project, Rêves Sonores.