Do I need school to be...

a singer songwriter? with Dan Elliott

April 21, 2022 Alex Villacís Season 1 Episode 29
Do I need school to be...
a singer songwriter? with Dan Elliott
Show Notes Transcript

This week we have the super talented and hilarious musician, Dan Elliot. Dan is a singer songwriter originally from Cork, currently based in Dublin who has a passion for teaching. Dan’s music is soulful, honest and as someone who has had the pleasure, nay, the privilege to see him perform live I’m happy things are opening up and he is back on the stage doing what he loves and brining joy to us all. Want to get a taste of Dan? Then this episode is for you! 

On this interview we spoke about:

  • How he got into music and performing
  • The maybe cliché artist who made him say: “Yes, I can do that.”
  • His love for teaching but the moment the decided to get on the music boat
  • What playing live teaches musicians
  • His love for printed books and much more! 

Want to learn more about Mr. Dan Elliott? Here are some links:
Instagram
Facebook
Spotify
YouTube
Twitter
Newsletter

Dan’s recommendations:
Everyone You Hate Is Going to Die by Daniel Sloss
“Two Shades of Hope” by Foy Vance (Live in London)
“The Age of Anxiety” by Jamie Cullum (Live from Craxton Studios)
Fleabag an Amazon Original

In an effort to make this podcast accessible, we make transcripts of every episode. You’ll find the transcripts on our website here

Special thank you to Ro Halfhide for the music on this show and to Immaculate Lemaron for proofreading the transcripts and helping this podcast be as accessible as possible.

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Follow us on Instagram, Facebook and support the show on Buy me a Coffee. We are currently looking for sponsors, if you know someone or are a local businesses in the Rotterdam area that would like to know about our sponsoring plans, reach out to us here.

Support the show
Dan Elliott:

Absolutely. Oh, go and see, go and see and go and play as many shows as you possibly can play. Everything counts. Play on the streets, play in pubs, play, cover gigs, play your own music, play everything that anybody offers you.

Alex Villacis:

Hello, friends, and welcome back to another episode of do I need school to be the podcast in which we Alex is going to sit down with creatives and ask them about their journey into the creative field focusing on their education, the teachers who shaped them the box or shaped in the movies in general, what their journey was like, if you're somebody who is thinking about entering the creative field, I hope this show will be a resource to you and show you that we all have different paths, and they are all valid. So let's go. Hey, friend, welcome back to the show. I hope you're having a great week and that you're ready for a great episode because because this week, I have done Elliot on the pot. Dan is a musician currently based in Dublin, who actually wanted to be a teacher at one point. Yeah, he'll tell us all about when he made that pivotal choice to follow his passion for music, how he learned to perform what He loves about performing. Why experience is so important. His love for actually printed books and much more. Really happy are here. And here's my interview with Dan Elliot. Hi, Dan, how are you today?

Dan Elliott:

Very, very well. How are you?

Alex Villacis:

I am also very good the Netherlands is getting finally some nice weather, which is rare.

Dan Elliott:

The same here in Dublin. It's getting. I mean, it's really windy. Like I was gonna say if people want to go on my Instagram story, but this isn't live. My Instagram story today you can check it out. Maybe it's literally a tree in a nearby cemetery has just been like ripped in half. And it's like a proper old narrowed looking tree that just got ripped apart by the wind over the weekend. So the weather here is sunny. But you know, we still got to be careful when we walk outside.

Alex Villacis:

I saw that and it looks crazy. I thought it was a movie shooting. I felt like wow, these people actually invested money, they rent that a tree and they put it there. I mean, Damn, that's, that's commitment right there. It's

Dan Elliott:

intense. It's intense. But yeah, it's getting warmer at night. So it makes such a difference as well. Like I'm looking at my bedroom window right now. And it's only 7pm. And it's still not fully dark. Which is great. Because you know when it gets dark at like four o'clock in the afternoon that is makes me sad in my in my bones.

Alex Villacis:

But here we are now enjoying this time. For the audience, please tell us who you are and what you're currently working on.

Dan Elliott:

My name is Dan Elliot. I'm an Irish singer songwriter from cowork based in Dublin. I currently working on a collection of songs. I have a new single kind of ready to go pretty much. I'm just trying to get the pieces together if you know what I mean, surely get the artwork and everything sorted out in a way that I like I'm getting the music videos and things put together. But I'm really excited to release it very soon. And hopefully organise a couple of gigs in Ireland and hopefully maybe even further afield.

Alex Villacis:

And how has the pandemic affected you as a singer songwriter? Because I actually saw you play live in sofar. Sounds Rotterdam before in those times before the pandemic way, way, way back. Maybe some people remember those times

Dan Elliott:

when you could just do stuff and not wear masks or provide certificates for anything. You could just go places and do stuff. Those were also rare times. Yeah, that was that was a great. That was a great weekend, actually, rather than it was really cool.

Alex Villacis:

Yeah, I really enjoy that. But like for you not being able to play like I know you were doing zoom gigs. I also attended one of your zoom gigs, which was pretty awesome. How did that change? Like, how do you feel different?

Dan Elliott:

You go from doing you know, a lot of life like my whole thing. I love writing songs, recording songs, I love everything about being a musician. But live performance is the thing I love the most being onstage in front of people and interacting with people and those zoom gigs were a godsend, they really did. You know, they gave me a sense of purpose. And just, you know, it's not the same, but it's as close as you could get. It's still performing, you know, you're still performing for people and interacting with people and making people laugh and having hopefully, I don't know, making some sort of an impact in somebody's day that they enjoyed whatever you were doing. So they were great. But obviously you're going from a world in which you know, like I said, just walking around with a guitar on your back and singing songs and all different kinds of venues was just standard practice to have that taken away was was harrowing. Look, we we just about survived our way through it. And it's kind of getting back to something resembling normality now, so

Alex Villacis:

I like the spirit of honesty being like it was awful. But here

Dan Elliott:

we are five. Oh, it was I just finished the book last night by a comedian called Daniel sloths. And he's gorgeous. I think the chapter of the book was I thought my thoughts and my thought Got one. And he was just talking about the pandemic and I so empathise I only just said today to a buddy of mine. He was like, Where are you going? And I said, I was going for a walk. And he was you can as to, you know, where are you going? And I was like, bro, I'm going for a walk, I need to get out of this space and just go, like the band because I'm very bad at being stationary. So with the pandemic, you know, being stuck in a room, or in a house or not being allowed to leave my five kilometre radius. So, so tough. I travel a lot for work. So yeah, being being stuck is a horrible feeling for me. So yeah, Panda was awful. And anyone who says it wasn't as a liar.

Alex Villacis:

Yeah, some people learn how to bake bread. Others just fell into a spiral was dumb. Yeah,

Dan Elliott:

I did, I did, I ran a little spiral of doom, more running spiral of doom. That was my process for the whole pandemic, pretty much. I mean, it did give me the chance to record the songs I'm releasing this year, which was nice. I recorded them all myself at home. On my grandparents old farm in West Cork, it was really pretty beautiful time of the year, the Euros was on, I was just in a house on my own watching football, swimming in the sea and recording music. And it will always go down probably is two of the best weeks of my whole life. And that happened during the pandemic. So that has to be borne in mind as well.

Alex Villacis:

But this is not a pandemic podcast. So that let's get back to the conversation. So you are a full time musician.

Dan Elliott:

Yes, indeed.

Alex Villacis:

And how did you get here? Like, how did you just pick up an instrument when you were three years old and started playing beautifully? Or, like how how to paint us a word picture? How did this all happen?

Dan Elliott:

I didn't play much music growing up, really. We did piano lessons, my parents made us do piano lessons, which me and my siblings, my siblings, and I rather, we all resented them very much. We did not enjoy playing the piano. But I did it for a while. And then I was in secondary school. And I remember very, very vividly like one of the first weeks of secondary school. So high school for anyone who's not from Ireland, or I don't know what you call it in the various places you might be listening from first week high school, the choir do this performance. And I can hear these see these guys my age and the choir singing. I'm pretty, pretty sure I can do that. Like I know, everyone thinks they can sing in the shower. But like, I'm almost sure I can do that. So I entered the school talent show. And I didn't win or anything like that. But I had a great time. And people said, yeah, that was that was really good, man. So I started playing the guitar properly. I kind of had some lessons when I was young. And honestly, from the moment I sort of played music onstage in front of people, it'll sound cliched, or like I'm saying it. Because it's a good thing to say. But honestly, pretty much everything else went out the window. Like I was, you know, I was a decent student. And I was good at some sports, but I just focused pretty much all my attention on music. I went to college that a year of college took a year out to play music. I went back for six months and did both. And then when I couldn't do both anymore, I just I left college and I've been playing music ever since.

Alex Villacis:

What were you in college for?

Dan Elliott:

I was studying to be a primary school or elementary school

Unknown:

teacher. Oh, that's so cute. It's,

Dan Elliott:

it's a great job. I mean, I've over the years, you know, when I was in college, you do a bit of subbing and stuff for teaching practice or whatever. I mean, it was fantastic. I loved it. It's a great job. But it was just I had to pick one or the other. And I physically couldn't do the two things anymore. I was doing like seven nights a week playing music, and five days a week in college and just like staying up all night trying to do assignments, and I was just this zombie of a human being. It was great. I mean, it was one of the best times of my life because I remember just just being busy is great. Whatever problems you have, you can put on hold as long as you're busy enough. Like it's not sustainable. And it's not a good idea. But I remember like, you know, having one or two things I had to deal with, like, no time to go write an essay about early childhood education. And I have to go play a waggon wheel in a pub. So no time for problems today.

Alex Villacis:

Yeah, it's that the you have like you're feeding two different boats. And they're starting to drift apart and you're like, Okay, I have to choose one now. i

Dan Elliott:

Exactly. Right. I mean, I've thought about it over the years. And when you asked me to do this podcast, what made me the pandemic, and I've had kind of injuries and stuff over the years that I've kind of meant to haven't been able to gig for a month here a couple of months there. It does give you pause, that, you know, I was 20 I think when I left college, like for forever, maybe 21. And if I had stuck it out, I like two and a half years to go or no two years, whatever it was, if I had stuck it out, I would have gotten you know, I'd have a degree and in the pandemic I would have been able to teach in a school. But because they didn't have that degree because I hadn't finished a degree. I obviously couldn't, I couldn't play music because there was no music. But you know, so like something about life, like getting older and the realities of life teach you that, you know, when your parents say, please go to college. They know, they know what I'm talking about. But I mean, for me at the time, it was just, I cannot give myself you know, completely to both things. I am unwilling to be 50% on, you know, both things. I don't want to mess up either of them or be like, a bad student and a half good musician. But, I mean, I've never regretted it, you know, it was just it was it felt right at the time. I did, it went after it. And it was great pandemic happened, and it was awful. Now, it's kind of getting, it's getting beginning to get good again. So,

Alex Villacis:

and the thing about college and study, it's always gonna be there, you can go back, anytime.

Dan Elliott:

Exact Exactly. And that's what I said at the time. I was like, Look, if it doesn't work out, whatever, we'll go back tail between our legs, like, Please take me back to college. But it was a decision I made long time ago, and I've never really had cause to regret it.

Alex Villacis:

You know what, that's kind of also another like, before we started recording, we were talking about why this podcast exists. And another reason why it exists is exactly because of that, because in life, the only thing we can do is make the best decision possible with the information we had in that moment, of course, and you couldn't have for who could have foreseen a pandemic, I mean, the or God.

Dan Elliott:

I know. I mean, there's a very, very funny YouTube, I don't have it on YouTube, or Instagram or something. But I saw Barack Obama talking about the potential of a pandemic, like eight years ago. And then one of the first things Trump did was like dismantle the pandemic preparedness squad, or whatever it was called Task Force. And then like, whatever, how many however many years into his presidency, the pandemic hit for years, and yeah, but you know, of course, I was a 21 year old college dropout, I wasn't foreseeing pandemics coming down the road, right. And your life, like when you have you have to weigh it up as best you can at the time. And like you said, look, I think the thing about this podcast as well is we'll talk about how I ended up where I ended up, but you but you can end up anywhere.

Alex Villacis:

So in this journey from being in college, to becoming a musician deciding to leave college and so did you have anybody who was an influence on you like a teacher? So I am saying that teacher isn't the loosest sense of the word, like a book can be a teacher, the nature can be a teacher, anything can be a teacher. So did you have anybody like

Dan Elliott:

that? I'm sorry, their phone rang again. And I'm just going to ignore it. I'm so sorry. I don't know who could be calling me like you said, nobody ever calls anybody ever. Teacher, I mean, specifically actual teachers. I had a teacher in secondary school called Mr. Gary. He was a German teacher. And he was incredible. And I think he kind of, he kind of brought out the teaching in me as in when I went to college to study teaching, I was like, I think he was one of the things because he had this incredible way of running a room. He just owned the room. And the way he taught was sort of like you had a real proper understanding of what he was saying. So as in I've always found that, you know, I can learn things off I can memorise things, listen to it, understand something, I can have it, if that makes sense. So in terms of an actual teacher, he was great. Miss O'Rourke in fifth class, big shout out to her as well. She was also awesome. When I was 11. And in terms of music, I mean, as soon as I started playing, it was kind of the person who sort of broke through for me I really loved Billy Joel and James Morrison. Paulo Nutini but and it's gonna sound stereotypical, but Ed Sheeran, his performance on Jools Holland when he played the A team just on his own no loop pedal, no band, no, nothing. I didn't know you were allowed to do that. You know, I didn't clinic I was the eldest of the four siblings of which I am one. And I didn't have an older brother, who you know told me like about music or cool music or this what you listened to or whatever. And my parents went into the unknown a kind of modern music. My dad played traditional Irish music in a band, but again, that was not really something that interested me to be honest. So when I saw Ed Sheeran, and I had sort of just begun to play music myself, and he was just one guy on his own all the time. For me, bands seemed totally impenetrable. I was like, I'm nowhere near competent enough to be in a band. I have no idea how to like, you know, write music like dictation. I can't even write it. Like, you know, like, proper sheet music. I ate the whole thing was where I couldn't understand it. But when I saw a guy on a massive TV show, playing the guitar on his own, and that being okay, I was like, Oh my god. So I don't know if I'd call that like a teaching moment, but I was really really inspired by Ed Sheeran and kind of what he did to get to where he was. I guess that's the closest thing I could say, because I just I didn't want to go to college when I left school, but when I left school, I was like, I have no idea what being a musician means. So I better go to college for a minute. And, you know, and do that, because that's the thing you're supposed to do. But as soon as I kind of, you know, found my feet, I moved to Dublin from Cork where I'm from, and as soon as I sort of found my feet, I was like, yeah, I gotta get out of this college thing. So it's always been kind of, you know, the draw has always been really strong towards playing music. And even in the pandemic, I was like, maybe I could do something else. Maybe I could learn maybe sign up for a degree or whatever, because we have time. I think to be fair, if I had known the pandemic would last as long as it did, I might have done that. But I was always like, No, I am not quitting on this. I'm not leaving this profession. This. This is the thing I'm kind of meant to do. But I think yeah, Ed Sheeran was the person who sparked it in my head, that somebody with a guitar and a voice could just do it himself, or himself.

Alex Villacis:

I love that. It's like you didn't know these things were possible until you saw somebody else doing them. Exactly. And you're like, Yeah, you're like, Yeah, suddenly, like this is this whole new path? This thing that I can do? Yeah,

Dan Elliott:

I mean, like, if you more and more, I always say the best thing about like, the internet, and YouTube's anyone can be a musician. And the worst thing about internet, YouTube's anyone can babysit. But for a long time to become a musician, or somebody somebody listened to, you just had to be on the radio, you have to get on the TV, you have to get on the radio. And if you didn't do that, that's it. You're not going to be a musician. And I mean, now there are like, there are musicians that I know who are really successful in Germany, do you know, and they're just playing like, reasonable sized venues in Germany, and it's back home people still playing music is like, yeah, he's a super big deal in Stuttgart. He didn't have to go like down conventional roads to get there. You know what I mean? So I think seeing stuff like Ed Sheeran, or even there are people, you know, who blow up as in, I'm not a big, I'm not a big social media guy. But you see people blow up over this kind of anything can happen. And I mean, I think definitely, if you interview somebody else in five years time, and they, you know, are famous or big, it's social media does that for a lot of people now just, you know, people see people on social media doing it. And they say, Well, I'm gonna do it. You know, I guess I guess my point is, I was listening to like Billy Joel playing Shea Stadium with a 12 piece band. And I was like, Well, I can clearly never do that. Then I saw Aaron, on his own on TV. And I was like, well, I could probably do something like that, at a much lower level.

Alex Villacis:

Totally. And my question to you now, so I interviewed two other musicians, for these podcasts, like one of them was Rojas fighter, who is a Dutch musician. And he told me about how much the audience impacts how he plays in the how he sees the audience as a teacher of like, it's different from and that that brings, that comes to my mind, because when you're playing for social media, your audience, it's, it's there, but it's not the same. And I think with a pandemic, with the Zoom sessions, you can also tell that it's not the same, like, do you see? Like, how did that playing life affect how you developed or how you learned to be the musician you want it to be?

Dan Elliott:

It's kind of everything for me, I'm playing live, it's Allison. I, I love going to see musicians. And depending on the musician, if they wanted to sit there on stage and not really say anything, that's fine. You know, like, if you want to sit down and play the songs, that's fine. But other times, I've walked out of shows because like, the musicians been on stage. And they've been so bad at interacting with the crowd. And it's like, bro, or, or, you know, Mr. The band or Mrs. In the band, or wherever you are, you have the audience right there. They're captivated. Just tell the sing the chorus, just don't sing one of the choruses and let them sing. Like, I brought my brother to see, I won't even say who it is because it's rude. But it was I went to his show in Dublin at the Olympia theatre, and we're really excited to see this guy play. And we could have just listened to the album and the car. And it would have been the exact same experience, nothing changed. You know what I mean? Like, if you go and see somebody, I think you should expect the person to entertain you. And I think that's the whole thing. If you're going to be going to a show you need to be entertained. And yes, for certain artists, it's just playing the music is what they do, and you expect that but for me, I can't help but interact with the audience and bounce off the audience and talk to the audience and involve the audience. And I feel like it just makes the whole thing it's what it's what I love about performing. If you told me Dan, go and do a gig tonight and don't say anything. I feel like I can't It's doesn't work for him. I have to I love it so much I love I love playing like that we met in the we meet we met in Rotterdam.

Alex Villacis:

I think so are you like I saw you play? Yeah, we played

Dan Elliott:

them. And I'm sure that show I would have told loads of stories, but all the songs and tried to tell you what it was about to sing about. So when I sang about it, you were like, oh, yeah, I get it. Because he said the thing before about, you know, whatever. So I think yeah, in terms of my songwriting or whatever, no, I just write the songs. But I'm always thinking about the audience. I very seldom just go up on stage and just be like, I don't care about the audience. I'm just gonna play whatever.

Alex Villacis:

You know, I totally agree with your experience. Like, I, the biggest one that I've ever seen plays Maroon Five. And I have to say I left disappointed, because I thought exactly the same thing. I could have listened to this. Like, it sounded exactly like the album. Yeah, that there was absolutely no interaction with the audience. Nothing. And then I saw play, I think, I don't know if it's the before and after via Ed Sheeran play live. He was playing in a torn Hala, which is a gem essentially, in Germany. And the ticket was 22. I know well, oh, there it is. And it was a 25 Euro ticket. Class, unheard of for now. And yeah, it's all this interaction is that you feel like you're part of the show. And when they get you to sing the chorus, you're part of the show, of

Dan Elliott:

course, and he and he makes his songs like it's three minutes long. And the album he makes it 10 minutes long, because he I just love the bits in the middle of it, you feel like you're getting like a really cool, unique experience by being at his show. And that's what you're paying for. And I know some people might go to massive shows, like you said, Maroon Five, and I'm sure to be fair for like Maroon Five. It's much more difficult to you know, go off the cuff and be spontaneous, because it's all choreographed. And there's like, there's lights and timings and all these kinds of things. But you know, for me going to a show to do exactly what you know, they do on the record. That's kind of just boring, you know?

Alex Villacis:

Yeah. I also saw right before the pandemic, I saw a laser.

Dan Elliott:

Was it a big big stadium? Or was it? Not at

Alex Villacis:

all? It was top 700 people? I don't know how that happened. This said Where was this? It was in Amsterdam in part of Lisa. Oh, pause.

Dan Elliott:

That's a great yeah.

Alex Villacis:

It will like second row. She was right there. It was my sis they will, we will impact other sister. And I thought I really want this to be a good experience. And he was because between the sounds you talked about fries?

Dan Elliott:

Yes. Yes, exactly. That's exactly. Yeah.

Alex Villacis:

It's like those little moments.

Dan Elliott:

The best gig I've ever been to and this is kind of like the sums up how I feel about gigging and performing. Foy Vance has an album called live in London. And he just it's an evening with Foley vans, and he plays all the songs. And I went to see the show in Dublin. And he had no setlist, he was kind of just making it up as he went along. And the first four songs, he just set the piano and went from one song to the next song, straight into the next song into the next song, with a bit of talking in between constantly playing the piano. And that's it. The first 20 minutes of the show was just him on piano and him on the guitar, like swapping and it was like two hours. And I mean, I honestly recognised about three songs, they were all new, or not finished or whatever. He was just up there talking to us, you know, and just playing around and I did three shows in the summer, they kept getting rescheduled because of the pandemic. What we eventually had to do was take my one big show and make it three smaller shows like with limited capacity. But it was amazing because they went up on the first night and played one setlist, and the next night played another setlist. And the third night, you're so comfortable that you're like, hey guys, I wrote this song yesterday. It's okay. If a player does like go Overbrook. And I'm like, you know, making mistakes. And everyone's like, that's cool, because we all we're all part of this together. And I'm absolutely there for you know, like you said, Go and see Maroon Five, go see whoever the big bands are and enjoy that massive experience because that's an experience to that's a different experience. But I just love that. Yeah, I would call that that's a show of gigs. gigs are the best.

Alex Villacis:

So if you could give a tip to young musicians, it would be go see as many shows as you can.

Dan Elliott:

Absolutely. Oh, go and see go and see and go and play as many shows as you possibly can play. Everything counts, play on the streets, play in pubs, play, cover gigs, play your own music, play everything that anybody offers you. It's all experience. And I think you can tell a mile away if I'm at a show, and the person on stage is or could be very good songwriter, a very good singer, but they struggled to talk in between the songs and in short, they struggle to maintain our attention between the songs. And they can you can just tell it's all just hours on your belt. It's like anything else, the more you do it I'm sure you've done the first two episodes of this podcast, maybe you're nervous, maybe you didn't exactly know what you're doing. But you kept going kept interviewing people, you kept working on it. And here you are gigging. Such a fun thing to get to do as well as,

Alex Villacis:

Hey, friend, it's Alex just interrupting this conversation to remind you that in order to have the optimal experience, and enjoy all the links in the show notes, you can subscribe to the show on any platform you're using to listen to this podcast. And yeah, it supports the show, it will improve the algorithm for you. So we will show you more shows like this one that you will potentially like. And if you wish to support the show, you can follow us on social media, all the links are in the show notes as well as a link to buy me a coffee, which will help pay for the hosting and I also love coffee, but enough my Bible, let's get back to the show. Okay, so my next question is you as a teacher, so you went from wanting to go to like going to college to be a teacher? Why do you want to become a teacher?

Dan Elliott:

I love teaching it this kind of comes very naturally, I guess. Same way music and performing, I feel very comfortable onstage, I feel very comfortable in the classroom. I used to train my little brother's football team with my dad. And I just I loved how you know, we play a game, when we lose the game. For like a specific reason we bet, okay, we need to improve that part of our game. And we'd spend all week working on it, then we play the next game. And we'd win because we were so good at the thing. We were bad at the week before. So recent, so I loved that. And I knew that when I was going to college, I didn't really want to go to college, I was like, if I'm going to do anything, I'm gonna do teaching. I mean, it's an incredibly rewarding thing to do if they were bad at catching the ball. So I taught them how to catch a ball. And the following week, we caught every ball.

Alex Villacis:

And how would you feel about teaching music? Like if a young aspiring musician came to you and said, I want you to teach me would you take them on? Like, have you ever thought about being a mentor to somebody? Or are you currently a mentor to anybody? How would you feel about that?

Dan Elliott:

I've got a couple of friends who just started playing music in Dublin. And I enjoy kind of it's not teaching I don't think are mentoring? I wouldn't call it either of those things. I would just say that, you know, they asked me questions about how do I get a gig here? How do I get a gig there, and I'm so so happy to make a phone call for them. Not that I'm a man of any influence, whatsoever. But I have worked in the city for a while. So I do have their phone number I can at least call the guy seeking to get my friend has a couple of friends who are starting to get on the Delvin scene and they're doing really, really well. And they're doing really, really well all by themselves. But I do like, I guess I don't know, the teacher in me or whatever. That part of me I love that they you know, call me up and say, Hey, I had this thing happened tonight. What would you do if this happened? And I'm like, Yeah, well, this is what I do. But I always kind of say it again, like I said earlier about experience, and just kind of hours under your belt, just you can, you know, explain everything. But just being on stage and playing the guitar and singing songs in front of people. That's what really, you know, that's how you learn.

Alex Villacis:

Yeah, experience is the best teacher after all. Absolutely. So now we're getting to that point, the show in which I asked the question is the future of learning stuff? Where are we going? What is happening in the world? Because I always related to this that before. If we go back to the Renaissance, for example, if you wanted to be a musician, you would apprenticed under somebody who was a musician, if you wanted to learn how to make furniture, you would apprentice under one person. But now like you said, before, we have YouTube, and we can learn anywhere. And you also have experience teaching, especially teaching young kids, where do you think education will go? Like, where do you want it to go? How likely do you think that is? Like, what are your thoughts on the future?

Dan Elliott:

I mean, ah, God in heaven, that's, I don't know. I mean, I think I think it's fantastic that, you know, we can educate ourselves as much as we can, the older I get, the more I am just blown away by the knowledge at your fingertips all the time, I'm, I'm sitting here at my desk, I'm looking at all the books on my bedside table. And just, there are so many things in those books, anything from reading about, you know, sports, or Springsteen or books or you know, books about life or psychology, these things, you know, the boundless possibility of the things that we can learn and I think, I sometimes when reading or listening to music, or watching a TV show, have moments of wow, oh, that's wild that has really landed and I actually, that has sort of changed the way I look at a thing, which I think you know, in life, it's, it should be kind of constant growth. And I don't think growth need be termed like self improvement. I feel like sometimes we class things as self improvement, and there's almost like a pressure on that. Because you gotta get better you're gonna get better and better and better. I think if you just think of it as You know, life being this never ending perpetual thing whereby you can just choose to experience and care about the things you want to care about. And I mean, the amount of times it's happened to me that I've suddenly become passionate about a thing or a person that I never knew what I didn't never expected this to happen. But because I was open to the prospect of being alive, I met somebody, or saw a show, or, you know, I, when I say being alive, I mean, like, you know, it's there to be lived and seized. And, you know, we all we all work really hard. Everybody's got a job. And sometimes it's, you know, it's really hired. And I'm saying this as a musician, so don't listen to me, because my life isn't hard. But you know, it can be really, it can be really easy to, you know, nine to fivers, and live for the weekend, and whatever, it's actually a friend of mine, right now. He's doing stand up classes, as constantly stand up music and using her evenings, like whenever she can, and she reads all the time. It's like, love the fact that you choose to, you know, choose to be alive and do things. That's not really answering the question. But I find that education is, education is you know, and you go to school, that can be stringent. And there are exams and degrees. And that is one kind of education. Sure. And that's good, that's important, that is vital, that needs to stay there and be there forever. Maybe there are ways certainly in this country where I'm from, where we can improve that system, and improve service, make sure fewer people are left behind. And now I've got loads of friends who are primary school teachers, and they do incredible work. And this people who work in the schools are amazing. I do think occasionally they are let down by the systems that are in place. I can say that as a musician who, you know, didn't finish his degree. So don't listen to me. But I think as vitally important as those things are, they're absolutely, there's so many avenues to become, you know, to become whatever it is you want to become. And I think with school, I always figured life for me would be school, secondary school, college job. Although it's not like that, you know, and I've only have friends who did do that, and now have a job that has nothing to do with their degree. Because, you know, they upskilled however, whether it was through online learning with the actual course, or just going on YouTube and figuring things out. I don't know. I mean, the answer to your question, what do we see education going? I have no idea. But I do think education, and growth is everywhere. And you know, I don't know the things you want to do the things you want to do, go and do. Go and do the things you want to do. And I mean, it's not that simple. We all have responsibilities, like I said, and jobs and things that you know, get in the way. But insofar as you can, there's a thing you want to do, go and go and do the thing.

Alex Villacis:

That was so inspirational. That was so inspirational. Oh, my God. It was? No, it was because a lot of people think like, like two episodes ago, I had started too late. I think it's episode. I don't know what is coming out. It's live podcast. She worked in sustainability took a course about changing careers. And she said, I want to be a photographer now. She could afford it financially. And she went for it. So I love what you're saying that we all have responsibilities. Yes, it's not as easy as say, I'm gonna throw myself to the life of an artist that everybody says lucky. But you can always like learn more and during your free time, and I have an important question for you. Yeah, me. Do you think digital books will replace paper books? And I'm asking this because you're saying that you have a stack of books next to you. So what are your thoughts on that?

Dan Elliott:

There's a question my mother, beautiful. I won't say her name. Because that's going to drop my name, mother's name and this podcast for fear. People hate what I say and go and find her somehow. It gets

Alex Villacis:

your marriage name for your passwords. Sometimes. I'm just saying security,

Dan Elliott:

but not my passwords, my passwords. I'm not gonna tell me what password or

Unknown:

Damn it almost.

Dan Elliott:

My mother is a librarian. And she you know, I think part of the reason I write songs is because my mother made me read books. So I've always been sort of decent at English as a subject because I was constantly reading, you know, if you want to get better at reading or writing or, you know, being being a student of language read, and I always wanted books in my hands as opposed to reading them on a Kindle or an iPad. I never ever SRX on my Kindle. I was like, Why do you? Why are you doing that's, ya know?

Alex Villacis:

A purist, a true purist,

Dan Elliott:

if you want to, yeah, give me that. Really. That tournament. You sound like a big asshole. But um, I I was at home during the pandemic and there was no bookstores and I didn't have a book or there was a particular book I really wanted to read. And I went on the store online and found it. And, you know, they give you like a 50 page sample, read it, and I bought it. And it was great. So I mean, I don't know how the money plays out. If I go into a bookstore tomorrow, and there's a book I want to buy in, it's 15 Euro. And I go online, and it's 10 Euro, who is the person who doesn't get the money is that just because he didn't have to physically manufacture a book, as long as the writers are getting the money that they would have gotten anyway, I'm happy. It is a, it's a fantastic resource. I mean, I'm reading a book at the moment by an author called David deal. He's a comedian in the UK. And I literally heard him talking about on a podcast, or I saw an article on a website about this book, I read like the first two pages of it, I'm like, I'm absolutely reading this. So I bought it straightaway. And it was just there in, you know, on my iPads. So I think I don't think that books will ever be replaced. I think we're always going to need books and stories and literature. I know they can now be put onto digital devices. But I do think we'll always have people who need the book in their hand. And mostly, because that would be really sad. I don't think books are going anywhere.

Alex Villacis:

Yeah, I love that. And for me, personally, I love the feeling of the book being thicker on this side. And then like, going through the book,

Unknown:

I love feeling so

Dan Elliott:

good. I finished the book last night and really noticed it towards the end, there was like 50 pages left. And it's why I'm so tired today. But it's a book called everybody you hate is going to die by Daniels loss. And it's just the best read. It's fantastic.

Alex Villacis:

Now that we're here that this is a perfect segue to the final question, which is, is there anything you would recommend? Is there a book or movie,

Dan Elliott:

everybody you hate is going to die. It was fantastic. It's just a really honest appraisal of do it. You know, it's an honest kind of his honest perspective on a bunch of different topics, it's 10 different chapters on 10 different things. And, you know, it really kind of reminded me of how important it is to be two things to be kind of self sufficient. And when I say self sufficient, I mean, you gotta be happy as to be you. It's so important. And I had struggled with that all the time that, you know, no one's ever going to fix you, there's not going to be a girlfriend or boyfriend is going to be the person that fixes you. And it's really bad of you to ask someone to do that. You know, if you, you should obviously, you know, it's again, it's really tough. I have difficulty with this all the time. But he just talks about how vital it was for him to find happiness himself. We could find somebody else who just accentuate his happiness. You know, you can't force somebody to be like, You be the person who fixes me, you know, you got to whatever. And so that's a book you could read. What else has made an impact? For events, his writing, he's got a song called the two shades of hope. And he's got a song called and so in closing, which are both just astonishing feats of songwriting. Jamie column has a song called the age of anxiety. I said again, I heard that and I was like God, Goddess. Yes. Well, trying to think Is there a movie lately that's made a massive impact? Oh, I think it was the last time I had a really good, awful looking cry at the television. I watched fleabag during the pandemic, and I thought just again, will always balls me over it because it's the thing I I tried to do, and but find the most difficult it's just people who are honest. People who are honest in the things they create. And I've got friends, and I'll give you some of them. Calum or Gary O'Neill, Aaron ro allready, Maria Kelly, these are Baskerville. Some of them are friends. Some of them are people that we really admire and wish they were my friends. But they're so so honest, in what they say on stage and, and what how they perform. And you can see it viscerally affecting them while they perform. So I just I think I love things that are honest. So fleabag I found very very evocative and moving during the pandemic, maybe that was because I was upset at the time. flew by go watch fleabag read that book by Daniel sloths. Yeah, but again, at the same time, don't listen to me. I don't know DARPA.

Alex Villacis:

I love when people give me a lot of recommendations because I love writing very long show notes. Like I love putting all the links and all the resources so I'm gonna know I love it. I generally like go check out the notes for the other episodes. I love me like I have five or commendations for you? Yes. I just love that.

Dan Elliott:

Can I just say something on that subject? Yes, very briefly. Yeah, I get sometimes occasionally, I get overwhelmed by somebody saying you have to watch whatever, or you simply must read whatever. Because time is, you know, finite, I only have so much of it. And there was a moment I realised I looked at a big list of movies on my phone, as on my notes, apps, making this list of movies and TV shows and books and all these things, albums and everything. All of a sudden, I realise I'm not enjoying consuming things. And I'm doing this because I feel like a half two, and watching this movie, because I feel like I have to watch this movie, because it's a movie you're supposed to have seen. And I mean, as much as you know, I think those are great songs. And it's a great book, and it's a great TV show, like, watch the things you want to watch, you know, and let yourself kind of meander through and end up landing on books that make an impact and you know, landing on the you know, I think the best way to be is to, you know, be curious yourself. And if you know, if you pick up that book by Daniel's laughs and it sounds like something you'd enjoy, read it. And if it sounds like I don't think I'd enjoy this, don't read it, because I told you, you probably should, because that's silly.

Alex Villacis:

I feel the exact same way about those lists, like 30 books you need to read before you're 30 or 20 books need to read for your 20 or something you don't normally over, you don't know what I need.

Dan Elliott:

Yeah, and it's already overwhelming as well. And I think sometimes I said earlier about growth versus like self improvement, self improvement, like pressure. Like, don't run, look like, I don't know, who's sexy Henry Cavill run because you enjoy running. Go to the gym because you enjoy it. You know, like, I'm exercising more lately. And like, I'm doing this I enjoy it. I'm enjoying beginning to look better. But it's not because I'm trying to be you know, it's like a somebody in Instagram told me to do it. I'm doing it for me. You know, same with reading and listening to music, listen to the stuff you like to listen to.

Alex Villacis:

You know what I had it yesterday. So I started this book. Okay,

Dan Elliott:

Wikipedia reader,

Alex Villacis:

we get a critical point of view, a Wikipedia reader. I read half of it. And then I made it to half and I thought I'd no longer care. Why am I struggling with this? I'll give it somebody else. Somebody else will enjoy it, I'm sure but it's just like,

Dan Elliott:

exactly. And that's a great, that's a great gift. The book on Yeah, yeah. It's like,

Alex Villacis:

be curious. Follow your bliss. And if you don't like something, I think

Dan Elliott:

that's the word though. Curious. Be curious. Be open to stuff you know, don't not like you know, don't get someone if someone recommends something. Don't just say you're never gonna read it. But you know, you just don't have to read it. You don't have to consume everything. You know, there's again, like there's so many podcasts, obviously saying it before we started the interview. There are so many podcasts on the phone right now. Terrifying. I got listen to all of these people imparting wisdom or talking about football or whatever. Sometimes they just want to listen to Harry Potter audiobooks, and that's enough for me.

Alex Villacis:

And that's also bliss. Okay, so we have we have made it to the end of the show. Is there anything you want to plug in anything you want to recommend? You can promote yourself? Any?

Dan Elliott:

I mean, my name is Dan Elliot, I'm on Instagram, Spotify YouTube. I'm on every social media platform you can think of wow, I think I'm I don't think my tick tock I think I was. But it made me sad. So I stopped. I have music coming up soon. Hopefully live shows in Dublin, hopefully further afield. If you'd like me to come and play in your city or whatever, please do send me a message on something. Drop a comment on a YouTube video. I see all that stuff. And I would love to know where people are listening from. But yeah, a lot of new music coming out this year. And hopefully a lot of shows too.

Alex Villacis:

All very exciting. Thank you so much, Dan, for coming up to the mic with me. This was really deep. So emotional, true. Funny.

Dan Elliott:

I think I'm just really tired.

Alex Villacis:

You said until the recording.

Dan Elliott:

There was once or twice that I was talking and I was like, oh god. What am I saying? Yeah, no, thank you very much for having me. I really enjoyed. Thank you.

Alex Villacis:

And I hope you enjoyed this episode with Mr. Dan Elliott, and he's thoughts on life performing music books, and all that cool topics we covered. Personally, I'm a fan. His song for you has 72,000 listens on Spotify, and I'm pretty sure half of them are mine. Yeah, no shame. Want to learn more about Dan listen to his music, check out his recommendations. They're all linked in the show notes of this episode. Yes, I also have a link to Daniel's lossless book, everybody your hate is going to die. It truly is awesome. I read it. And now I'm listening to it on Audible because I'm also a Daniel sloths fan. And yeah, go to those notes. And as we come to the end of the show, I want to say thank you for joining me on another episode and giving me your time. I hope you're enjoying these conversations. Please subscribe to the show. Give it a review or give us feedback. It's always welcome. Are there questions you would like to ask Creatives or do you have somebody who would like to recommend for the show? You can reach out to me on social media or email, which is all linked in the show notes. Also special thank you to Anne, Catherine and Marcus for supporting the show through buy me a coffee. I love you guys and I appreciate the encouragement. Also, thank you to Rohan Haida for the music for this show, and to immaculately Marin for her help proofreading the transcripts and helping keep the podcast as accessible as possible to close. Thank you for listening again this week, and I hope to be back in your ears very soon. Until then, keep learning and stay curious. Bye