From my smartphone to yours.
Enjoy the unique sounds coming from Portland, OR in this week’s Portland Selfie Session! Brought to you straight from the smartphone of musician/music-enthusiast Sarah DiMuzio.
Recently, on a spectacular rooftop in central Portland, Sarah DiMuzio met with the very talented, multi-instrumentalist singer-songwriter Tim Murphy. Tim has been playing the drums since he was just nine years old, and has played in just about every genre of band you can think of. Brand new to the city and straight out of New York, Tim is already fitting into Portland extremely well. He loves Elliot Smith, has a cat, and he drives a Segway for a living. How much more Portland can someone be? The song he played for Sarah, “Cabaret Card,” is actually inspired by an old NYC phenomenon appropriately titled “New York City Cabaret Identification Cards,” which in short was a permit needed by musicians in order to perform around the city. (More information about that here). So without further ado, let’s get to the interview with Tim:
Tim Murphy – Cabaret Card (A Portland Selfie Session)
So you’ve been writing/recording songs for about a decade now, is that just for fun? Or was there a bigger plan like licensing?
No, there was never really— anything that has or ever will come of it is an added bonus. But for me there’s nothing better than just writing & recording a song myself. It’s like a feeling of accomplishment having a complete idea totally down. And I’m not an engineer by any stretch. I’m not good at it. But I’m able to write my own songs, do it all myself. I play guitar you know, and drums, basic piano and bass, I’ve been able to do it all myself. And it’s just out of necessity more than anything, it’s not that I think I’m the best at playing these instruments…It’s just the easiest.
What’s your songwriting muse? You mentioned Elliot Smith as an influence, but what do you like to write about?
The muse itself, well my girlfriend is staring over at me… (laughter) Well I’ve been writing songs way before she was in the picture. So I think for me creative inspiration is the one thing I don’t really have control of. I’m able to practice drums, and practice guitar, but as far as creative inspiration it just kind of comes or it doesn’t And it’s just one of those things you have to let flow naturally because if you try to force a song it comes out really terrible. And I’m just saying that from experience. So muse, I’m not sure there’s one thing in particular that’s ever been my main influence, it’s just the creative inspiration that comes and goes. When I was younger it was— I was way more prolific you know, as far as writing and recording went, because when you’re young there’s just a thousand fleeting ideas every minute. And as I’m older now, not that I’m an old man, but the process is more refined in that when an idea comes I always make something good out of it, but there’s less ideas that come? But then again they’re able to be more tangible, moldable ideas because I’m more mature and know what I’m doing, ya know?
Do you have any upcoming releases?
Not really, I’m new to this town as of one and a half months, I’ve been playing drums with a couple different bands in the area.
Where can people buy your music now?
As far as buying it, people can just listen to it for free online on my SoundCloud. [listen here]
You mentioned playing in bands, do you have any shows coming up?
Well not really as of yet, like I said I’m really new here. But there will be. I’m still trying to set up my apartment.
For more on the Portland Selfie Sessions click HERE