Long-time collaborator and friend of the brand Miles Copeland sat down with us on one very rainy day in May. We took refuge in his flat, just upstairs from our Lamb’s Conduit store and talked all about WONDERFULSOUND, lockdown listening and how the Singles Club – a bi-monthly 7” singles subscription service - came to be.
We are also excited to say that Miles will be writing up a monthly album recommendation, exclusive to Oliver Spencer readers. We trust Miles wholeheartedly to drip feed us the very best on what to add to our playlists. You can find Miles' first choice here, but first, it’s time for a catch-up.
How did yourself and Oliver first meet? Was it over a mutual appreciation for fashion, music or both?
Oliver moved his empire into my street (haha) so our paths were bound to cross… I actually had my studio on Lamb’s Conduit at the time and a mutual friend told Oliver about WONDERFULSOUND when we met, we clicked. We have a similar London existence - a Portobello Road history and an obsession for style and fashion and I always think like-minded people are drawn to each other.
We've partnered with you on a number of occasions to produce the soundtrack for the show. Is there one particular show that stands out?
As the Music Director, I’m probably one of the few people involved creatively at the fashion shows to experience the final production as I’m out the front controlling the music and sound with the best view. Everyone else is backstage doing their thing, so I’m well placed to witness the end result and every single Oliver Spencer production has been 1st class. We took over a space in East London for SS20 and turned it into a Hong Kong street market. I composed and designed the sounds to invoke a street market: bicycle bells, birds the locals chatter, 50cc bikes and had that playing while people entered the space creating an atmospheric soundscape and it brought the place alive with the set design. Fantastic.What was the music like in your home while in lockdown?
I started a new music project/band called Sometimes Songs that I’d been trying to get off the ground for a while but never found the time. Well now I had plenty! It’s a collaborative collective with me at the helm, but writing at this point remotely with friends associates & artists from the label. I basically drove everyone in my house mad writing, playing, looping and mixing. I’m really happy with the results; the sound and the songs pick up where I left off with The Superimposers, which was my last full-time band.
For those new to WONDERFULSOUND, how would you describe the aesthetic?
New artists inspired by classic recordings of soundtrack music, 70s Californian songsmiths, over produced easy listening, psychedelic soul music, European Library music, anything with an acoustic woody sound. The extravagance of the music producers from the 60s and 70s all brought forward with a 21st century attitude.
RYDE BOMBER JACKET
The way I see things moving forward, and I think this is currently true of most independent ideas, is creating a niche movement and growing your fan base. It’s very sincere and I believe in it. Hence the Singles Club. It’s been such a success… everyone involved - artists and subscribers - have been very supportive and what a bargain at £3.50 per month.
With the Singles Club, what would you say your process is for selecting what you send out to subscribers every two months?
Originally it was all WONDERFULSOUND artists but myself and Ceri Preston, who helps me curate my Soho Radio show The WONDERFULSOUND Libraries, were finding music that was only getting digital releases. I began approaching artists and labels, explaining the idea and always getting enthusiastic responses. The last single was an exotica easy listening project that the guys from Hiatus Kaiyote under the guise of The Sweet Enoughs and it is amazing. I crammed as much music that you can on a 7” vinyl! The next one is a piece of perfect pop that came out last year, but slipped under the radar from a current artist in Canada. You’ll have to sign up to find out what it is.
Now we're allowed to travel, where's the first place you'll be visiting outside of the UK?
I’m desperate to get to Japan. I’m lucky enough to go regularly and I miss those record shops, vintage stores and the perfect food. I do have a trip booked to record a new LP with the Monks Road Social collective at a studio in the Andalusían mountains just below Granada… its work so I’m allowed, right? That’s going to be a beautiful time working with, amongst others, Dr Robert (Blow Monkeys), Mick Talbot (Style Council) and Matt Deighton. The end result is going to sound like a true 100% bonafide WONDERFULSOUND release probably seeing the light of day early 2022! Oliver Spencer and your subscribers will be the 1st to know!Is there an artist or band that you feel our readers should be listening out for?
This is the nice idea about the regular feature we are launching via the journal. I’ll be recommending a piece of music every month “share the knowledge” as a friend once told me. So obviously the Eddie Chacon is one to watch out for (read here) and his producer John Carroll Kirby who is an artist too. There’s an artist called Duval Timothy who is based in London and Sierra Leone and he is a true art-based musician with subtle social commentary wrapped in beautiful music.