It's been already over a month since Vom Vorton contributed his great original song The world is round to this project. It's more than time to throw our 5+1 questions at Tom, and see what answers he comes up with.
The Pop! For Kids Project: Hello Tom! What have you been up to recently?
Tom Morton: Well, I've been writing and recording a lot due to the time of year, but more on that later! I'm trying to have quite a busy musical year in 2011 to follow up the EP that I released at the end of last year (Plots & Plans), so I've got quite a few gigs coming up. I also provided some science based songs for the Geek Pop festival recently, although the science involved is dubious at best!
TP!FKP: What are your earliest musical memories?
TM: I had a tape of songs recorded off the radio called Tom's Favourites that I used to play all the time. I think the songs became my favourites because they were the only ones I had rather than being picked for any specific reason, but some of the better ones included Letter from America by The Proclaimers, Heaven Is a Place On Earth by Belinda Carlisle and of course the incomparable Rick Astley with Never Gonna Give You Up. I guess I would have been about five at the time. I also used to put on 'musical' shows with my cousins throughout my childhood and most of us have carried on making music to this day. They're mostly doing better than me, but that's OK - I'm proud of them!
TP!FKP: Do you think good music is important for young children?
TM: I think music in general is important for young children, and if that music happens to be good (and bearable for grown ups as well) then it can't hurt!
TP!FKP: What's the best bit about being a musician?
TM: When it all goes right - finishing off a new song and feeling proud of it, or realising in the middle of a gig that everyone is having a really good time. Getting to do something really fun and have other people enjoy it too!
TP!FKP: Do you have any favourite children's songs?
TM: I certainly do! I don't want to live on the moon first appeared on Sesame Street in 1978, and is sung by Jim Henson as Ernie. It is absolutely wonderful! So sweet and with a nice melancholy tinge. I've thought about covering it in the past, but there's no improving on perfection. I also think the child-friendly Beatles songs get a bit too much stick - if you can write a catchy song about an octopus or a brightly coloured submarine then go for it, I reckon.
TP!FKP: You recorded The world is round as part of FAWM. Can you tell us a little bit about this yearly challenge?
TM: FAWM stands for February Album Writing Month, and it's a timed songwriting event that, this year, generated over 10,000 new songs. It's a hugely positive event where people upload their songs and encourage each other to reach the goal - 14 songs, in theory, but it's a personal challenge and people's output varies from a couple of lo-fi webcam recordings to huge studio-recorded opuses (opii?). I managed 19 songs this year, which I'll be trimming down to the best ones, polishing up and releasing as a free album sometime in the next couple of months.
The Pop! For Kids song request arrived just in time for the start of February and The World Is Round was the first song I posted. Thanks for getting me started!
TP!FKP: You're very welcome Tom, and thank YOU!