It’s more difficult than you think. Singer, Matthew Richmond talks us through his musical journey and whether the glitz and glam of the X Factor has faded.
Like many musicians Matthew sung from an early age, and never really stopped.
He said: “I feel like I was one of those kids that sang before they could speak! I think it’s because I’ve always been surrounded by music. Whether it was in the car or in the living room.
He continued: “Music has always been that thing that’s always there. And let’s be real, who doesn’t enjoy listening to Michael Jackson on repeat, not me. I started stage school at a young age too. As soon as I got my small taste of performance, I couldn’t imagine never doing it again.”
Matthew also knew the struggles of becoming an artist and quickly realised the fact that it is not just you trying to become the next Justin Bieber. There’s thousands of people trying to grab the same opportunities. He had to find out young whether he wanted to become an artist, because if you don’t it might be too late.
He said: “I’ve always known that in life it was important to play to your strengths. Music and performance was mine. And it was so easy. Maths & Science not quite. But music was always that thing that I could do that not everyone else could. It gave me a sense of importance I guess. I loved how happy it made people when I sang. Music provokes emotion and to think I could move someone to an emotion by using my voice to get them there I thought was really powerful.”
He also talked about his biggest struggle trying to become an artist.
Matthew said: “I guess its originality. Staying true to your artistic beliefs in a world where everyone’s a singer it’s hard to find your niche. Because everyone’s out here trying to be relevant.”
Like hundreds of thousands of people every year, Matthew applied to the X Factor. He realised the struggle of having someone judge whether your career should start.
Matthew said: “The X Factor process was an experience for sure. It was an eye opener really because you realise how many other talented people are out there undiscovered. Although it is a lot of waiting around and a lot of yes and no’s I rate the fact that they give people a chance to create themselves a platform where they can express themselves as artists.”
Matthew continued: “For example one thing I’ve always wanted to be is a positive role model and X Factor makes little things like that happen. No word of a lie, I applied because of peer pressure. Everyone was doing the whole “If you don’t apply, I’ll apply for you” thing. So I just bit the bullet and sent it off.”
Matthew got through to the second round of the producer stage. Yes, if you didn’t know, not all applicants even get close to sniffing Simon Cowell’s cologne. But after that setback Matthew had to rethink his priorities and whether becoming an artist is still at the top of the list. Right now, Matthew is now a receptionist at a general practice in London.
He said: “I feel like the ambition to be a singer never leaves. However, I feel like my priorities have definitely shifted. Music will always be there. And I will always love singing. However, sometimes it’s about doing the must do’s before the can do’s. I do perform now and again at different venues. But until music comfortably fits all of my bills, being a full time singer might be off the cards for now at least.”
Before the interview ended he let me into what goes through his mind as he steps up to the mic and sings. Matthew said: “My lyrics! The amount of times I’ve been on stage and I’ve had to adlib my way out of forgetting my lyrics is a joke. In all seriousness, I think to really connect with your audience it’s important so sometimes you have to put yourself mentally into that scenario you’re singing about. If the person singing is hurt, you better sing like you’re hurt. The audience want to feel that emotion from you.”
Matthew is still wanting to follow his dream of becoming an international singing superstar. But I guess sitting behind a reception desk is a must do, and standing behind a mic is a can do.
Follow Matthew on Twitter: @mattrichii
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