When the world is bleak all one can do is take it upon themselves to create their own sunshine. That’s what the mind behind Rainy Day Café did a couple of years ago when most of us were glued to the couch, waiting for impending doom while we mindlessly scrolled on our phones. Instead of doing that, Rainy Day Café got to work and from that came what he calls “summery songs.” Despite the leaves changing around us, we talked about these warm musings, an artist’s locale inspo, and more in this back-and-forth exchange.
Kendra: You came up in the punk scene, playing in a handful of bands before taking a turn as a solo artist. What sort of insight do you think having that foundation in punk has granted you now that you’re on your own?
Rainy Day Café: I think it’s made me who I am really. The main thing I think it’s taught me is how to be self-sufficient. Growing up, I always admired bands that did everything themselves, from DIY music videos to home recordings. It was very inspiring seeing my heroes making their art with what they had available to them, It made me feel like I could do it too!
Kendra: What was the driving force behind kickstarting Rainy Day Café?
Rainy Day Café: The original idea for this project came during a COVID-19 lockdown. I was living in Manchester at the time finishing my last year of university. It was the middle of winter and I was stuck inside all day. I just wanted to make something as far away from that as possible, so I started writing all these happy summery songs as a way to escape my bleak surroundings.
Kendra: You noted that you moved to the coast, and you can really hear that hazy, sunny atmosphere in your debut, “Gone for the Summer.” Do you think that locale can make or break an artist’s creativity?
Rainy Day Café: I think it certainly helps creativity but I really believe you can make good art wherever you are. As I said, I was writing a lot of songs in lockdown in a pretty uninspiring setting but I was just trying to imagine sunny days by the sea when searching for inspiration.
Kendra: This song has an air of nostalgia to it. I think because when I hear it, I can imagine it playing over a fuzzy VHS tape of old vacation footage. When this song first came to mind, did you hop back into your own memory bank and pull from past summers?
Rainy Day Café: It’s really nice to hear that you connect with the song like that! When I wrote it I was just thinking about how fast time goes by sometimes. Although I’m eager for the future, I think it’s important to look around and appreciate the people around you and what you have, because one day it’ll all change.
Kendra: This is just the beginning for Rainy Day Café. Is more music on the way soon?
Rainy Day Café: There is plenty more on the way! I’ve got a big folder full of demos on my laptop, I just need to decide which ones to record first.
Kendra: Side note time – with it being a Back 2 School season, I’d love to know your favorite field trip or just school memory.
Rainy Day Café: Oooh! That’s fun to think about. My favourite school memory is probably when I joined my first band. A few kids were jamming in the music room at school and I wandered over and asked if I could join in. Reluctantly, my now good friend Owen lent me his guitar and we jammed through Back in Black by AC/DC. It felt good. We’re all still really close friends to this day.
Kendra: Lastly, with “Gone for the Summer” out now and potential new songs on the way, what’s on the agenda as we head into fall and soon…2023?
Rainy Day Café: Well, I just want to keep on recording and putting out songs through next year. I’d also like to find a band so I can play these songs live! But for now, it’s just me in my little room, and I’m pretty happy with that.