Name: Othello Woolf

About me:  I'm Oliver and spend my time making music under the pseudonym Othello Woolf. Growing up, like most people, I had no idea what I wanted to do but the seeds were somewhat sewn when, aged 16, I managed to get some work experience shadowing a music lawyer for a few days.

He happened to be in the midst of representing Gary Kemp in Spandau Ballet's famous court case where they had fallen out over of song-writing royalties. I sat next to him in court taking notes and the legal formalities were dull as anything but when each band member was up in the dock trying to explain how they wrote certain riffs and melodies (then the judge would listen back over the speakers) it was fascinating and inspiring! I had taught myself piano and not soon after, my friend's band were looking for a keyboard player so I jumped at the chance. That's how my journey in music began and I've been writing and performing songs ever since.

 

Listening to: Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti are blowing my mind right now. I think he's the best song-writer around - the songs on 'Before Today' are so effortless and beautifully crafted, catchy but also experimental, I'm just in awe really. And I love how the band play in a really laid-back way, you can tell they're great musicians because it sounds tight but loose at the same time, which is so hard. I doubt whether they've thought about it though, the record sounds like they're just having so much fun playing the songs. I haven't yet had a chance to delve into Ariel Pink's back-catalogue but I hear there's lots of gems from the days when he was recording hundreds of songs onto a crappy old cassette recorder. I'm looking forward to hearing those and of course hoping desperately that they'll make another album as Haunted Graffiti.

Reading: I'm ashamed to say I'm not reading anything at the moment, just not finding the time. The last book I read from cover to cover (I'm pretty bad at finishing books) was 'Big Sur' by Jack Kerouac. I was glued and it left me with a huge desire to throw caution to the wind and spend the rest of my days taking Benzedrine and stumbling from woman to woman in a daze of creative euphoria. That hasn't happened yet but it's been bookmarked for sure.

 

Watching: The last film I saw on the big screen was 'Tree Of Life', the new Terrence Malick. The woman sitting next to me walked out after ten minutes, spitting under her breath 'what the fuck is this?'. It definitely wasn't your average blockbuster, but what do you expect when you go see a Terrence Malick film?! Since then I've been re-watching his other films on DVD, no other director makes films like him, he's my favourite along with Sergio Leone. Just love those long slow-burners.

 

Eating: Usually nothing too spectacular. I'm not very good at sticking to meal times so it tends to be picking at things here and there. I was once lucky enough to eat at the three Michelin-starred The Waterside...where I was getting so ill with the flu that I couldn't taste any of the food. Bad timing to the extreme.

Promo Info: My debut album's out on the 5th September and for a limited time it will be a free download on www.othellowoof.com, so grab that! Then it will be on Spotify and iTunes. I usually play live as a five-piece but I'll also be road-testing a solo setup at a 6 Music night at the Cat & Mutton in Broadway Market, late September. If any Londoners are in the area, come on down, I would love to get your thoughts.