Chris Haze - We Are One
2017 has been a great year for music so far, and it's only February! Someone we are big fans of at Merryn Music is Chris Haze, who we interviewed for Independent Music Monday back in October 2016.
His new EP "We Are One" has been released today, so to celebrate that fact, we caught up with Chris to find out more about the song, the influence behind it and also how he was lucky enough to be a support act for Coolio!
Hi Chris, we've listened to the songs on your EP and we love them! Please can you tell us the influence behind your new single "We Are One"? What was the writing process?
"We Are One" was written in under an hour for an ad brief I received from my publishers in America. The brief for the ad was Equality, Coming together and Being one. Which is exactly what the world needs with everything that is going on at the minute. So I felt it was close to home and was very interested in writing something for it. The song was to be submitted for the ad the day after I got the brief so I got straight to work on writing lyrics to fit the description. I composed an instrumental for the song originally the same day I wrote it but I was feeling the instrumental. So I went looking through old files and found an old piano riff that I recorded over a year ago. The lyrics I had just written fit right into the piano piece and that's when "We Are One" was born. The song was initially written for an ad but I wasn't able to get the song to the level it needed to be at for the advert in such a short space of time. So the song became the title single from my forthcoming EP also entitled "We Are One".
Where was the song recorded?
The song was recorded and produced at my home studio in Galway.
What has the reception for "We Are One" been like?
So far it has been amazing and truly overwhelming. Everyone really seems to get the concept and relate to it which is my only aim. It's all about the support and I'm so lucky to have all my fans helping me spread the word about my music.
The video for "We Are One" is so captivating and inspirational. How did you come up with the concept for the video?
It was hard to come up with the concept for a while. I wanted to portray the message in the strongest and best way possible so it took me a while to figure out the best way to do it. I had an amazing team of dancers from D-Dance Galway who choreographed the dance to the song and lyrics and done a fantastic job. The morning of the video shoot I was walking around with all the lyric sheets in my hand thinking, "I'm not gonna be able to get anyone in on this" but the exact opposite happened. When I approached people to feature in the video holding the lyric sheets and told them about the concept of the song and what it was about everyone seemed more than happy to get involved. My mission was to get people from every walk of life involved. Different nationalities, races, genders, religions etc to show that we are all one. We are all human and we all feel the same feelings.
Which is your favourite track from the EP and why?
My favourite song on the EP is "We Are One" and I'm not just saying that because it's the first single. It just has an amazing message in it and I'm very proud of that track and what it stands for.
Your single "I'll Run" debuted in the top 10 on the Irish Singer Songwriter chart on iTunes and knocked Hozier off the top spot. That must have felt amazing!
That was a huge milestone for me and my career. To independently get a song into the iTunes Top 3 was just crazy and amazing. Again it humbled me to know that there was that many people out there willing to support and buy my music. It was a really nice feeling. And now my new EP "We Are One" is in the "Best Selling Pre-Orders" on iTunes for a fourth day in a row. It's just crazy. There are people in the industry who don't believe in me and my music but there's clearly a lot more fans and supporters that do and that means everything to me.
What has been your proudest moment?
Being able to tell my mum that my new EP is in the "Best Selling Pre-Orders" on iTunes.
Do you have any tour dates coming up?
At the moment I have no tour dates organised which is really getting me down. I have no management or booking agent helping me organise and promote shows so with me promoting this release, writing new material and producing it, it's really hard to find the time to organise them myself. I am actively seeking a professional live agent to make sure this changes asap.
We read that you've been a support act for Coolio! How did that come about and what was that like?
I got a call from a promoter in 2013 asking me if I wanted to support Coolio. I said "Is it a tribute act?" because I never thought at that stage in my career I would be offered a slot like that. But it turned out it was the real Coolio and I was buzzing about that gig. The show itself was wicked, he came on and smashed it. He got the whole crowd chanting my name while Gangster's Paradise was playing out. That's one of my all time favourite Hip Hop tracks. So to say it was an experience would be an understatement. Afterwards we had a couple of drinks backstage for a few hours and ate some of the best chicken I've ever tasted. They got it specially made for Coolio.
If you could play any venue in the world, which one would it be and why?
My dream gig would be to sell out Madison Square Garden in New York with screaming fans and have them sing every word of every song with me. You know when you've sold out MSG you're doing alright! :)