Frank Turner is no stranger to long nights on the road. Even before his decade on the road solo or with his backing band, The Sleeping Souls, he was touring with his metal band, Million Dead. Now he puts on the energy of a metal concert while playing folk punk tunes from ‘The Other Stage’ at Glastonbury to pubs in New Brunswick and everywhere in between. Releasing his sixth full length album, Positive Songs for Negative People, in August 2015, he’s been touring non-stop through the UK, Europe, and all over North America. Turner makes his way to Edmonton on March 6th, playing Union Hall once again.
Why Are You Listening: What is it about England, aside from it being home, that makes it the topic of many of your songs?
Frank Turner: Well, it’s where I grew up and where I live now. I write autobiographically, so it’s going to come up a lot. But I also like the sense of place inherent in folk music, and indeed in stuff like Springsteen. I have a lot of affection for England.
WAYL: What was the hardest part of recording the latest album?
FT: Getting into the right studio with the right producer. It was something of a battle with the label to get them to endorse the methodology I wanted to employ for this record. I wanted to record it like it was a debut – well rehearsed in a live environment and then recorded quickly. It took a long time to find the right producer; when I got in touch with Butch Walker, everything fell into place, and the actual session was plain sailing.
WAYL: What are looking forward to most for the 2016 festival season?
FT: We have a great season coming up, on both sides of the Atlantic. I can’t remember which ones are announceable just yet (and I’ve got in trouble for this before!), so let’s just say it’ll be a good summer.
WAYL: What new song are you having the most fun playing live and why?
FT: Get Better has become a set closer, which is gratifying, to see a new song elevated to those heights. That feels good.
WAYL: You recently played your first shows ever in some parts of Eastern Canada. What other places are on you list that you would like to play that you haven’t had a chance to yet?
FT: I’m generally keen to break new ground, so I’d say anywhere I haven’t been yet, arguably. South America looms large.
WAYL: How do you stay positive when you’re exhausted from constantly recording and touring?
FT: I’m incredibly fortunate to do what I do for a living; I’ve done my share of shitty jobs, and I have a lot of musician friends who don’t get to do this full time. Remembering that helps.
Frank Turner & The Sleeping Souls hit Union Hall in Edmonton on March 6th. Tickets available from Ticketfly.
Images courtesy of Universal Music