On Campus: Danny Aspinall

Danny Aspinall is leaving his mark on the Newcastle music scene, having dropped his debut single ‘We’ve Gotta Try’ on November 17th

Danny Aspinall
28th November 2017

Third year English Lit. student and regular Courier Music writer Danny Aspinall is leaving his mark on the Newcastle music scene, having dropped his debut single ‘We’ve Gotta Try’ on November 17th. We approached him for some words on his track, here’s what he said...

I guess I’d fall into an ambiguous mid-section between the ‘acoustic singer-songwriter’ and ‘rock’ genres, and the track ‘We’ve Gotta Try’ perfectly encapsulates this. It’s a song I’ve had laying around for a long time, musically and structurally coming together very quickly based around the opening riff. I consider lyrics an integral part of what I do, and as such the time consuming part of the song’s construction lay in the constant redrafts during the writing process.

For me, Bruce Springsteen’s album Born To Run is the holy grail of musical greatness, with tracks such as ‘Thunder Road’ and ‘Born To Run’ poetically capturing inspiring thematic ideas. I was keen to replicate these grand motifs (ideas of existentialism, youth and carpe diem-fuelled desire) and familiarise them into a contemporary colloquial voice, approaching the lyrics in various different ways and consistently editing right up to the morning of recording.

Artwork for 'We Gotta try'

The recording process itself was quite a simplistic one. Though I write and perform my songs as a solo acoustic act, I find that subconsciously I construct songs around a full band arrangement, meaning arranging the tracks with Cieran (Bass) and Travis (Drums) was a relatively easy process, given my already clear sense of direction. The idea of the production was to make it sound as a genuine and authentic as possible through capturing a ‘live’ sound and avoiding unnecessary overproduction; the words and music should be able to speak for themselves. As such, I believe all the instrumental parts and the majority of the vocal parts for ‘We’ve Gotta Try’ were recorded in one take, with me playing and layering both the acoustic and electric guitar parts.The track was completed in less than three hours, along with two other songs that were all completed within the day to try and achieve this feeling of authenticity.

‘We’ve Gotta Try’ is the first of three upcoming singles, released last Friday and peaking at number 18 on the iTunes singer songwriter chart on its first day of release. The other two singles, ‘The River’ and ‘The Ghosts of You and I’, will be released over the next two months, accumulating in an EP including all three songs, and being released in physical format. ‘We’ve Gotta Try’ is available on all digital and streaming services now!


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