Every Monday we will be bringing you an unsigned singer or band as part of our Independent Music Monday feature. This week, we caught up with Joe Monaghan who performs under the moniker of Train Room find out more about him…
Where are you from and how did you first get into music?
My name is Joe Monaghan and I'm from a village called Balla in Co Mayo. I first got into music when I was 7/8 years old, all my older brothers were in local bands and there was always musical instruments laying around the house.
Who were your musical influences when you were growing up and who are your influences now?
Firstly from a young age I was listening to The Jackson 5 and Queen, from there I progressed to a lot of alternative music when I was in my early to mid teens. Bands such as Radiohead, Supergrass, Oasis, Neil Young, Beastie Boys, Stereo MCs, The Small Faces, Blondie the list goes on really.
The first album I bought was Betty Boo in 1990 :) - Still proud of that fact.
Nowadays I listen to a lot of American alternative stuff. Wilco, The Shins, The National would be fairly influential at present.
How would you describe your sound?
I find it difficult to put a label on my sound. I self-produce all my songs and from within the production process I seem to develop a sound which tends to re-occur in each track. Some tracks have a lot of space within, which probably gives an electric atmospheric sound.
What is your latest single called and what was the influence behind it? (please feel free to ignore this question if you don’t currently have a single out)
My latest single is called 'The Lives of Others' which I suppose is in the folk ballad genre. It was a very quick recording, no real influences, just very organic and authentic when tracking so decided to put it out as a single.
What’s your local music scene like?
The scene of local original musicians is very vibrant at the moment. There are lots of singer songwriters in the county which are starting to gain success both nationally and internationally. This is a big change as before it was very quiet on the original music front. We just need more original venues to play live as it's very hard to get gigs in the west of Ireland for original music unfortunately.
What do you have planned for the next 12 months? Any albums or festivals?
I plan to release my new EP in July which is the follow up to my debut 'Delicate Bones'. I'm still in the process of forming a live band and once that's set in stone I will pursue the festival circuit. The launch gig for new EP will be in the Workmans venue in Dublin in July and I hope to gig a lot more after the launch around Ireland, UK and Europe.
Is there anyone you’d love to collaborate with?
Probably Kate Bush and maybe Lee Mavers. Just for the simple reasons that they're pretty awesome :)
Any funny stories surrounding your live performances?
Hard to think of many funny ones, but I do remember playing a cover gig a few years back in Mayo. I always refused to play 'Wagon Wheel' and some woman came up to me and said 'Play Wagon Wheel or you're f**king dead', I didn't know it so I thought 'Galway Girl' would be a good substitute. Halfway through 'Galway Girl' the same woman was making the 'I'm gonna slit your throat' gesture with her finger, so we got our phones out and got the chords gave it a bash and after the opening two chords of Wagon Wheel the woman walked out of the pub :)
What is the one thing that you want readers to know about you?
I'm humbly sound :)