A couple of months ago we introduced you to Loyal Trooper, one of our favourite new artists for a while. Since we introduced him he’s had coverage and airplay on the likes of Steve Lamacq and XFM, so he’s certainly no flash in the pan. The singer/songwriter better known to friends and family as Andy Walker took some time out of his busy recording schedule to sit down for a bit of a chat. For those not familiar with your music, how would you describe your sound? I’m useless at this question. I try to convey my point of view in my songs, attempting to communicate with people in a frank and honest way. Bill Hicks once said that he talked to his audience in the same way he’d talk to his friends. If people didn’t like what he was saying and walked out, booed or didn’t want to listen then that was their way of saying they didn’t want to be his friend. I look at my songs in the same way. Why should we listen to you rather than every other new artist out there? I guess that depends on the individual, not me. Lyrically and sonically, I write and present my music the way I want to. If people choose to give it a shot and see if they like it then that’s ace, if not then that’s fine too. I’m not a fan of having artists forced down my throat, so I’d hope I’d never do the same thing. I’m just going to keep on doing what I do till I can’t do it anymore. Enough people will find out about me through playing live, getting a free MP3 or having their mate recommend me for me to get where I want to be…eventually! How do you see the future of music online? I like these sites (like There Goes The Fear actually!) who will give the currently smaller acts coverage and post an MP3 and/or article but also recommend that, if people like it, they ought to buy the artists latest record. On some bands websites or MySpace’s you can ‘donate’ them some money via paypal if you’d originally downloaded their work for free. I think that’s a good concept at least. I dunno, it’s a fine line isn’t it. I need money coming in from sales of my music to be able to keep doing it. However, people have been getting music for free for years and you’d never truly stamp it out and nor would you want to. It’s like me taping stuff off the radio when I was a kid and then if I liked it, I’d go out an buy it. I’m trying to give people demos and rarities so they can get songs from me if they’d like to. There does comes a point though where you can only give so much away for free, I do have to eat afterall. Either way, websites and music blogs are clearly the way forward as I think print is a dying medium in music. I’d still like people to make physical records though, I’m not so keen on the idea of MP3’s being the only form of purchasing music. On songwriting - how does it start for you? Lyrical concept? A riff? Turn of phrase? Or a drug fueled orgy that gives you a hazy idea for a great song? It depends really, I don’t have a set way or writing. I’m currently demoing the album and I’ve been trying to get the music and arrangements perfect first and foremost. Lyrically, I’ve been struggling recently as I’m trying different ways of writing and it’s not clicked for me yet. It will do though I’m sure, I’m just attempting to write out of my creative safety zones. I’m afraid we don’t have any drug fueled orgy’s in Finsbury Park. We’ve got a Tesco, Nando’s and lots of high priced parking. That’s about it. What’s your favourite song (by an artist that’s not you…) so far this year? Hmmm…I guess ‘Love Is A Boat and We’re Sinking’ by Dinosaur Pile-Up has been there with me pretty much all this year. Who do you tip for great things in 2009? Alan MX, Dinosaur Pile-Up, Favours For Sailors, Skint & Demoralised What’s one thing everyone should bring with them to one of your gigs? Can I have more than one please? It is Christmas after all. A fresh set of strings and tuner for my guitar. Ear muffs. Brandy. A Bill Hicks DVD to watch between peoples sets to escape the tedium of listening to The Ting Tings being played by the DJ.