Geraint John Jones is an Alt-Pop/Folk Singer who composes, sings and plays guitar. You can find him busking around Europe as well as playing in local venues, cafes and bars. Always on the go, the British boy has travelled far, having lived in the UK, France and Germany. He will soon embark on a European Tour so don’t miss when he comes to your town!
Geraint has an enchanting voice and it doesn’t hurt that he’s also got intoxicating eyes and that British accent. We have fallen for his melodic love song and the enchanting video for “The Last Waltz”.
What (or who) brought you to Paris?
I first came to Paris with a friend when I was 18 years old and I fell in love with the place. I liked the mixture of dirty streets and the bourgeois cafes, I found that very romantic somehow and I then went back when I was 22. I had bought a train ticket and found a flat on a sublet for one month, the next thing was that the guy didn’t want to come back, so I stayed for one more month, then another, then met a French girl. In all, I ended up staying for 3 years.
What were you doing there?
For the first year I was playing full time on the streets and in the cafes, after that I had a string of part-time jobs in various cafes around the city to supplement my music earnings. Working in a typical local cafe is not only an amazing way to learn the language but you also learn about the people. I think that without this experience, I wouldn’t have integrated as well I did.
Where do/did you prefer playing in Paris (street, neighbourhood, …)?
On the street I have two spots; In the past I’ve been associated with the Marais, which I love, but I wouldn’t say that it’s my favorite. My favorite is actually Le Pont d’Arcole, it’s the place where I started and where I always go back. On a warm summer evening you can play there all night, accompanied by the Seine as your backdrop and with the lights of Paris on your side, you can create a lot of magic on that bridge.
Is there any special place/spot in Paris you love?
Lots! But I’d say Menilmontant and Belleville are definitely the best areas in Paris. It’s very bohemian and there are lots of little cafes doing concerts and other things. If your into Hemingway’s Paris and the stories from others around that time, I’d recommend going there, I’d say that it’s the closest thing that you will find to the Belle Époque in modern Paris.
Where do you live now?
What type of music do you enjoying play ?
It all depends on the mood but I like the really emotional, big songs where I can let out all of myself. This isn’t in a depressive way but it’s more a release, I like to use my voice as much as I can, I’m sure my friends would agree!
Do you write all your own songs ?
90% yeah. I have a couple of songs in French, with those I worked with two very good friends of mine to write the lyrics, as I wanted the text to be authentic.
What inspires you (to create your own songs)?
Again, it’s a release. If you’re feeling a certain way (happy or sad), it sometimes goes away when you write it down. In times of heart-break, “the professionals” say that you should write down all your thoughts and emotions on a piece of paper and you’ll feel better, I suppose that’s what songwriting is.
Where do you find your inspiration ?
It sounds a little cliché but love. Not Disney love but more lust and desire. I’d say I write most of my songs when I’ve a little bit of something and want a little bit more.
Which music influences you ? Who are your favourites artists/musicians ?
There are many, but I would say that the people that have always stuck with me are Ryan Adams, Bob Dylan and Pete Doherty. I discovered these people at 15/16 years old, when I was just getting into music and I still listen them today. More recent influences would be people who don’t sing in English; I’m massive fan of Chanson Française and I pride myself on my knowledge about the scene (some would say show off).
Vocally I’d say Claude Nougaro is a massive influence on how I strive to sing. I am also a big fan of the Lebanese band Mashrou’ Leila and I even translated one of their songs into English, it’s called “Robes” and you can find on my youtube channel.
Tell us about your first movie video “The Last Waltz”.
Who is the director?
The director is a good friend of mine that I met when I was playing in a football team in Paris. He is a French filmmaker who works professionally in France and when I showed him the songs for my EP he decided to do me a massive favor in making me a Music Video.
Who is the actress?
The actress is now also a very good friend of mine, her name is Raphaelle Abramczyk and she is a young, actress based in Paris. She is the friend of a friend and when we played her the song, she liked really it and decided to come on board.
Where was it shooting in Paris?
It was shot in Robin’s apartment at Barbès – Rochechouart in the 10th arrondissement.
Your first solo EP “Fo(u)r Love Songs” is released on February 26th 2016. Tell us about it.
The EP took around 8 months to make, it could have been quicker but as it was my first I wanted to go slow on it. I composed half of the songs in Paris and the other ones in Berlin. When I moved to Berlin I met an Italian called Goran who sings in the band “Galeb and The Seagull”, he wanted to produce an EP for me and this inspired the start of it. In the end he ended up moving back to Italy before we started, but luckily I had another good friend called Jamie Collier who helped me so much in the recording and the arranging the songs.
Will you do a tour in Europe ? In France ? When? Where?
I’m still confirming dates but it’s going to be in May/June this year. I do already have some places confirmed in Strasbourg and Lyon but I hope to pass by a few more towns in the East of France, some in West Germany and in Switzerland too. A Parisian show is on the cards but I guess you’ll have to stay tuned for that!
Do you have a favorite French film or director?
My favorite French film would have to be Delicatessen. It’s by the same director that directed Amelie and although I do love Amelie I think that Delicatessen has just a little more grit. It’s very funny and the lens choices and the sound design are very well thought through. There is the scene at the very start, where the noises of the entire apartment all come together in a very creative way; they mix the sounds of squeaking bed springs, the beating of a dusty rug and the chopping of a butchers knife into this sort of percussive beat, great cinema.
His first EP “Fo(u)r Love Songs” is set for release on February 26th 2016.
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