There's no doubt about it, Irish duo Picture This are well on their way to establishing themselves in the music world. As they prepare to head to the US for a huge showcase event and having just released their self-titled EP, they kindly agreed to this interview to chat influences, song-writing inspirations and future plans.
PW: Please introduce yourselves.
Picture This: We are Ryan Hennessy and Jimmy Rainsford from Irish band Picture This.
PW: How would you sum yourselves and your music up in five words?
R: Meaningful pop music for everybody.
PW: When did you first realise you wanted to be performers? Was there a concert you attended or album you bought that encouraged and influenced you?
R: When I first heard the What's The Story Morning Glory album that I stole from my brother for the first time.
J: Seeing a video of Metallica’s S&M live for the first time.
PW: Hailing from Ireland, have you ever felt any pressure to live up to the careers of Boyzone, Westlife and other hugely successful acts?
J: We don't feel under pressure to live up to the careers of any other acts. Although we do admire their success, we believe wholeheartedly in our music and we work extremely hard. We have to live up to our own expectations.
PW: Which band or artist would you say most similar to?
J: The Script!
PW: Your lead single "Take My Hand" has reached the top 10 in the Ireland airplay charts and Shazam where it's had close to 700,000 views. Did you ever expect the track to get such a reaction?
R: We never expected the track to get a reaction this big. Although we knew it was an amazing song, we could've never expected so many other people to feel the same way but we are so grateful that they do! The support is phenomenal.
PW: Tell me about the video. How did you come up with the concept and is being creative in that way something you enjoy?
R: We wanted a music video that described and mirrored exactly what was going on in the song. The video reflects the summer romance portrayed in the song. Being creative in this way is the most important part to us. We shoot all of our own videos and write, record and produce all of our own songs. Creative control is vital to us.
PW: Who or what most influences your song-writing and how easy or hard do you find the process of putting a song together?
J: We write songs based on moods and experiences, this inspires us more than the music of other people. Real life experiences and relationships. The process of putting songs together is very easy for us and is done very quickly. Having our own studio allows us to produce songs very quickly and efficiently.
PW: In your opinion, which is the greatest song ever written and why?
J: “Imagine” by John Lennon.
PW: You're flying to NYC in August for an industry-debut showcase on August 18, having attracted attention from UMG, Warner and CAA among others. How excited are you and are the nerves starting to build at all?
R: We are very excited to be coming to the US together for the first time as a band. We feel very lucky that we have the opportunity to play some gigs in New York-- so we are not nervous, just very excited!
The show will also celebrate the launch of your self-titled EP. What can you tell me about it?
R: It's a 5 track EP which was written and recorded in our home studio with 3 tracks that have already been released on social media with accompanying music videos which all received massive reactions as well as 2 never before heard tracks. We're so excited for everybody to hear it!
PW: Do you have a favourite track on the collection and if so, which is it and why?
J: “Take My Hand” is our favourite track right now as it's the song that brought us together as a band and it's a song that has had great success for us. However we love every single track so if you asked us again in a week we would probably give you a different answer!
PW: Aside from the NYC showcase, what are your upcoming performance plans?
R: We have an Irish tour coming up which starts in September and it's completely sold out! Our first ever tour and it's sold out months in advance with over 10,000 tickets sold! We just can't believe it. We're also touring the UK in November.
PW: If you could share a stage with four other bands or artists, who can be living or dead, who would they be and where would you play?
J: The Beatles, Michael Jackson, Queen, and Mozart at Madison Square Garden.
PW: What are your thoughts on social media and to what extent has it helped your career?
R: Social media is the future of the music industry. It has played a pivotal role in the rise of our band it allowed us to build a massive, dedicated fan base for our music which we were then able to take to sold out venues. We love social media!
PW: Finally, where would you like to see yourselves five years from now and what advice would you give to anyone looking to make it in the music world?
J: We want to playing stadiums in the next 5 years and having more and more people hearing and becoming invested in our music. Advice: write music that you want to listen to yourself, and that you're happy with. Take no notice of what the "suits" think: it's all about the fans. Appreciate every single person that supports your music, they're the people who will allow you to follow your dreams.
Watch the video for "Take My Hand" below and for more information on Picture This, visit their website, give their page a like on Facebook or follow them on Twitter. Tickets for the NYC showcase are available here.