Interview with

Wyndham Wallace

Wyndham Wallace is genuinely the name of an Englishman who’s lived in Berlin, Germany since 2004,  after spending the previous eight years running the UK office of Berlin’s City Slang Records. His first book, Lee, Myself & I (about his friendship with Lee Hazlewood) has been published in May, 2015 by Jawbone Press. He often works as a music and (occasional) travel journalist, writing regularly for (amongst others) Uncut, The Quietus and  Classic Pop (for whom he is the New Releases reviews editor), as well as contributing to other publications including The Guardian, The Sunday Times, Electronic Beats,  BBC Music (RIP) and  Slow Travel Berlin. He is also a writer/editor/photographer for the acclaimed A Poor Man’s Connoisseur Guideseries, which has now published three volumes (Oslo, Tromsø and Træna), and his photographs have been published in The Guardian, Berliner Zeitung, Uncut, View and more.

Facts

1: Every passport is an accident of geography.

2: For every solution there is a problem.

3: Every raindrop is a kiss from heaven. (That’s what the sign said on Kurfüstendamm in 1987, and who am I to argue?)

Questions

What is the biggest inspiration for your writing?
The desire to tell a story with which others can identify. The thing that I worked hardest at on Lee, Myself & I was to make sure that every sentence was emotionally honest. I believed it was the only way to ensure that anyone else reading it could imagine being in my position.

How and when did you get into making writing?
I always wanted to be a writer, but when I left university I was hired by a music PR company instead of a music magazine, and restricted myself to writing press releases. I began providing music reviews ten years later to Uncut magazine, in 2004 (under a pseudonym), and from that point on writing slowly became a part of my life. But it was only after Lee Hazlewood – the subject of my first book – died that I began to think I was tired of working in the music industry and should perhaps consider focussing on my own creative endeavors more fully.

What are your 5 favorite albums of all time?
There is no definitive answer to that, but, right now, as I type, I’ll go with

Talk Talk – The Colour Of Spring

Rachmaninoff’’s 2nd Piano Concerto

Simon & Garfunkel – Sounds Of Silence

Jim O’Rourke – Bad Timing

Nils Frahm – Victoria OST

What do you associate with Berlin?
Home.

What’s your favorite place in your town?
The sight of the TV Tower as I am flying back into the city.

If there was no music in the world, what would you do instead?
Enjoy the silence.

What was the last record you bought?
Unfortunately I get sent so much promotional music every day that I can’t remember the last time I actually bought a record. I struggle to keep up with gigabytes of downloads a week.

Who would you most like to collaborate with?
Nils Frahm.

What was your best gig (as performer or spectator)?
That’s another impossible question, but Nina Simone at the Royal Festival Hall in London, 1999, was pretty astonishing.

How important is technology to your creative process?
I’m certainly not planning to write my next book by hand …

Do you have siblings and how do they feel about your career?
I have a younger sister. I can’t imagine my so-called ‘career’ keeps her awake at night…

Our favourite:  Lee, Myself & IHilli (At The Top Of The World)  

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