Last month Tim Chaisson came through Toronto and played a couple shows before he went on a bit of a tour with Canadian Blues / Rock icon Colin James. Tim has so much going on. New Album, New Label and well an endless amount of touring ahead…
Corey: Tim, Thanks for taking the time to chat today. We know you just released a new album Lost In Light a month or so ago. It shot up the iTunes charts to #1 on the Country chart for a couple days I believe how does that make you feel?
Tim: Thank you for taking the time and Ya, well I really didn’t expect it. To have it surpass Sam Hunt and Jason Aldean was pretty neat.
Corey: With the release of the new album maybe tell us how this one has matured in a sense from the previous albums?
Tim: I think I would have to say my last one was a bit more or of an organic / rootsy based album. This one is organic as well. But, I think it’s a lot to do with the producer you work with. On the last one I worked with Colin Linden who is amazing, so good and an amazing guitar player. That one was kind of like, live off the floor put some vocals on top of it and then that was it. Very rootsy and chilled out vibe and more mellow. I loved how that went. But going into this record I kind of wanted to spend a little bit more time in production and making sure that everything was the way I wanted it before it kinda came out. I worked with Bill Reynolds on this record of Band of Horses. He was awesome to work with. We were all just throwing ideas around. Every idea is open, there was no strict way. I also had a goal to write more upbeat songs and a majority of the record is upbeat which is nice.
Corey: So as you mention a more upbeat sound. That comes with a different type of song writing I guess, compared to the slower more intense songs maybe?
Tim: Ya, totally. I wrote a bunch of songs last winter and I guess since my last record came out I have been chugging away at writing. But I really put a push on last winter because I knew I would be recording in the spring. I wanted to make sure I wrote more upbeat and catchy songs. And I know everyone tries and makes their songs as catchy as you possibly can but I wanted the song to stand alone on its own. I do tour a lot by myself. Can’t always have a band with you so its really important to have the song stand out with just an acoustic guitar. Rather than relying on production and instruments. It is nice when they both can work so that was a goal as well to just have good songs.
Corey: Having a bit more upbeat catalogue on this album. Is that something that you were hoping would lead to a more radio friendly album maybe?
Tim: Ya, for sure. I don’t know what radio will do with this album but it’s funny my slowest most stripped down song on my last record The Healing got played a lot on the Coffee House station on Sirius XM. When I recorded that song I never had any idea that I was even going to release it. Or that it would end up being one of the more popular songs off my record. When I put that record out a few years ago I actually never played it live or anything like that so it’s just funny when you don’t expect a song to do well.
Corey: Did that song (The Happening) have more meaning than some of the others on the album to you though and maybe that’s what the people saw in it and were able to connect to it in the same fashion.
Tim: Absolutely, I agree when something is honest people just may connect a bit more. And on this record there are a few slow songs on there but when I play live I just love playing more upbeat songs so I just tried to make an effort to write more upbeat songs. Although I did have 20 some songs to choose from for this album it just seemed that more of the upbeat songs made the album.
Corey: You are opening a couple dates for Colin James out east are there any other touring plans for you seeing festival season is so close?
Tim: I am doing some dates with Colin out east and out west. Then I am coming back to Ontario and doing some dates with The Stellas. I am fans of theirs so I am pumped for those. Then in April I have the ECMA’s around mid April and after that I have a stretch of headlining shows. I am not sure yet on how far West I will be going but will be doing Ontario and Eastern Canada for sure. And ya we also have some summer festivals that we have lined up but nothing announced yet but will be a busy summer.
Corey: Social Media plays a big part for a lot of artists today. Can you let us know how you view social media and how you use it?
Tim: Ya, Social Media today is very important I think. You don’t need to do anything but its definitely quite necessary. The cool thing about social media and what I like to see from other artists are tweets and facebook posts about a video or something. It makes you feel like you’re a little more connected to them. I know when I see something posted by a band I like I know I kinda wanna do something like it. It’s neat to update people, It’s a real whirlwind you know going from show to show and it’s kinda neat to capture little moments and share them.
Corey: So reaching out to fans and having the interaction after a show is that something you would think is important to you and the fans using social media?
Tim: Ya, I don’t take any of that type of think for granted. I know it sounds very cliché and cheesy but if someone comes to my show and buys a record I am very grateful for that. Because I know what it’s like to not have anyone at a show. I have done that a few years ago. But ya, I am just happy they came and the least I can do is to thank them online after a show.
Corey: During the writing process of the new album is there anyone new that you worked with or had you worked with everyone previously?
Tim: I think most of the people I wrote with on this album I have written with before. I did write with Carolyn Dawn Johnson on this one which I hadn’t written with her before. And I have written with Gordie Sampson but I have written with him before. He is pretty much my favorite song writer ever so. He is such a great song writer, and a really cool guy and good friend. Another guy is Chris Kirby who I have written with a bunch and is a good friend of mine from Newfoundland. I think we have six songs that we have written together on this record. And Merideth Shaw and I have written a few songs together. I love co-writing, I do a lot of writing on my own but it’s one of those things that I just find co-writing to be enjoyable to write a song. When it’s done and you both feel good about the song you feel you both have something special kind of thing. And sometimes when you write a song by yourself you kinda just wonder is that any good and you’re your own judge of your own art and its tough and can drive you crazy.
Corey: You tapped a CMT Canada Special, The Edison Room special last winter I believe and you made a comment on that special about writing songs. You take your own experiences and your friends tell you things then you tell those experiences through your own perspective in a sense.
Tim: Ya, you know I feel I have been through some stuff I try and connect with people that way because everyone goes though stuff. I have some friends that have been through more difficult times and know people that have gone through some tough situations and it really becomes an emotional outlet I guess you could say. It’s one of those things you try and write about and when you really feel it and it comes out in a song. It’s kind of a special thing whenever it connects musically as well. I can say in every song that I have written I have some connection to it in one way or another.
Corey: The East Coast music scence is unlike any other in Canada can you maybe describe it a bit to those of us that have maybe never been?
Tim: Ya, its one of those things that the East Coast is such a community. You relate with other people if you’re from the East Coast if you’re anywhere else in the world. There is just a cool togetherness and music is so big out there being one of the oldest settlements in Canada going back to the Acadians and how important music was to them. I actually come from Acadian ancentestry actually. For some reason it’s just part of almost everyone I know. Everyone has a parent or a grandfather that was a fiddle, banjo or mandolin player the Celtic stuff is really prominent out there. Like Folk singing and song writing has survived all this time. There are so many great musicians out there and not all of them get out to tour. You can go out to a bar on a Tuesday night in PEI and see a great song writer. There are just so many of them around just not all of them think to go out and take it to the road. They do it for the music.
Corey: Tim, thanks for taking the time to chat today. The new album Lost in Light is now available on iTunes and anywhere you can buy good music.
Catch Tim on his own headlining tour in late April and May of 2015. For more info on Tim stop buy his Website, Twitter & Facebook Pages.