Jack Hinks is an Edinburgh-based singer/songwriter and producer. Known across Scotland and the U.K. for his introspective songwriting, guitar playing, and cross-media experimentation, Jack is becoming a staple name across many genres and scenes.
You have challenged yourself to write a song representing each stage of grief...what’s the inspiration behind this idea?
I realised that most of the songs I tend to write often gravitate around the themes of grief, but I hadn’t fully explored grief in itself. There are a lot of different emotions and steps that get bundled up as ‘grief’, and I wanted to experiment with each.
Your current single Plastercast is fantastic by the way - you've also got an amazing video for the song! How important is the visual presentation of your music to you?
Thank you so much! Visual representation is rather important to me; I often have an image, and usually a colour in my mind when I’m writing and finishing a song. I like being able to incorporate that into the release, but leaving the subject matter open enough that people can make their own interpretations as to the meanings.
What were your main challenges when you started out making music and how have they changed over the time?
When I first began I would often have a lot of ideas, but found it very difficult to finish them. That’s still true now, but I find the ways in which I write have altered slightly. Recently I’ve been producing my music myself and recording at home throughout lockdown, and I think my writing has begun to fit into that model, too. I used to only ever write on guitar, as it’s my main instrument, but now I find myself stepping out of my comfort zone a little, and playing with keys and midi sounds to spell ideas out.
Who inspires your music the most?
Some of my top inspirations and favourite artists are John Mayer, Everything Everything, Phoebe Bridgers and Talking Heads.
Live music has obviously been halted for sometime now - which fantastic UK venues are you most looking forward to getting back to playing in?
The last gig I was at before lockdown was implemented was at Sneaky Pete’s in Edinburgh. I’d love to get back on stage there. My cover band often played late night gigs at until the early hours, and that was always a blast!
An inevitable question that affects the past year. ..to what extent has Covid slowed you down in your work?
COVID has been a real industry halter for so many creatives. It’s completely stopped my wedding band from performing, and writing and practicing with my band has been put on hold as well, ofcourse. I’ve been trying to keep active in lockdown but it does feel odd; releasing music without the possibility or intention of gigging it any time soon.
You collaborate with other artists, such as Fiona Liddell of Gefahrgeist. Are there any other artists you would love to work with?
I do indeed, Fi and I have been best friends and bandmates for 5 or so years now! I’d love to work with John Mayer or Phoebe Bridgers, or any of my heroes, really. For the longest time I’d love to be involved with more music for screen. I’m a huge fan of Hans Zimmer. To be involved in a project of his would be a dream.
What’s next for you, tell us about your plans for the future!
I’m nearly halfway through with the ‘stages of grief’ project, I’m looking forward to piecing it all together (and maybe adding a few extra parts) and releasing that. Once the industry opens up more, I’d love to get back to building up a live set with my band, and return to playing weddings!
Give us your top 10 favourite tracks at the moment!
In no particular order!
Sleeping On Your Own - Hugh Kelly
Settle - Rufus
The Wheel (Is Turning Now) - Everything Everything
Hymn for the Earth - Xani
Susan - Angus Munro
Nukular - Gefahrgeist
SLO - VUKOVI
Providence - Laurence Murray Project
Wonderful Slippery Thing - Guthrie Govan
I Didn’t Know What Time It Was - Wayne Shorter
Is there anything else you want people to know about you or your music?
I’m really excited for the rest of the grief EP, and I hope people have been enjoying the tracks I’ve released so far! I try and experiment within the style or genre of each song I write so that each feels a little different, but hopefully has a recognisable stamp on it! I hope when the full release is out you’ll check it out and let me know your thoughts!