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Paul Smith

Musician — Newcastle Upon Tyne

Name, where are you from?
Paul Smith, Newcastle upon Tyne via Billingham.

Describe your style in three words?
Suit And Hat.

What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
Neil Young at Glastonbury 2009.

If you could be on the line up with any two bands in history?
The Beatles and Kate Bush, just to see them play!

Which subcultures have influenced you?
Punk (mostly post-punk), DIY musicians and filmmakers. Zines and lo-fi music.

If you could spend an hour with anyone from history?
Frank O’Hara, my favourite poet. He liked to have fun and had lots of amazing painter pals in ‘50s New York. I might also end up in one of his poems!

Of all the venues you’ve played, which is your favourite?
The Royal Festival Hall in London last year was an amazing gig in an amazing venue. There's a Steinway piano in every dressing room and I love being on the South Bank in London.

Your greatest unsung hero or heroine in music?
Karen Dalton - lost folk/blues singer whose work has been rediscovered but still needs a bigger audience.


Paul Smith is best known as the frontman of Maximo Park. After Maximo Park released their 6th studio album 'Risk To Exist' in 2017 last year, Paul is back with a brand new solo album.

The new record is called 'Diagrams' and is set for release on 26th October 2018 via Billingham Records.

The first track you played on repeat?
'These Dreams' by Heart.

A song that defines the teenage you?
'Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now' by The Smiths. 

One record you would keep forever?
'Any Other City' by Life Without Buildings.

A song lyric that has inspired you?
Every Leonard Cohen song (and most Joni Mitchell songs). But let's say 'Amelia' by Joni:

“I was driving across the burning desert,
When I spotted six jet planes,
Leaving six white vapour trails across the bleak terrain,
It was the hexagram of the heavens,
It was the strings of my guitar,
Amelia, it was just a false alarm.”

The song that would get you straight on the dance floor?
'Ince Ince' by Selda.

A song you wished you had written?
'Sign ‘O’ The Times' by Prince.

Best song to turn up loud?
'Back In Black' by AC/DC.

A song people wouldn’t expect you to like?
'What Do You Mean?' by Justin Beiber.

Best song to end an all-nighter on?
'The First Big Weekend' by Arab Strap.

Any new bands you are listening to right now?
'Trouble' by Girl Ray.
'In My Head' by Our Girl.
'Something More' by Nabihah Iqbal.
'Baby Luv' by Nilufer Yanya. 

Name, where are you from?
Paul Smith, Newcastle upon Tyne via Billingham.

Describe your style in three words?
Suit And Hat.

What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
Neil Young at Glastonbury 2009.

If you could be on the line up with any two bands in history?
The Beatles and Kate Bush, just to see them play!

Which subcultures have influenced you?
Punk (mostly post-punk), DIY musicians and filmmakers. Zines and lo-fi music.

If you could spend an hour with anyone from history?
Frank O’Hara, my favourite poet. He liked to have fun and had lots of amazing painter pals in ‘50s New York. I might also end up in one of his poems!

Of all the venues you’ve played, which is your favourite?
The Royal Festival Hall in London last year was an amazing gig in an amazing venue. There's a Steinway piano in every dressing room and I love being on the South Bank in London.

Your greatest unsung hero or heroine in music?
Karen Dalton - lost folk/blues singer whose work has been rediscovered but still needs a bigger audience.


Paul Smith is best known as the frontman of Maximo Park. After Maximo Park released their 6th studio album 'Risk To Exist' in 2017 last year, Paul is back with a brand new solo album.

The new record is called 'Diagrams' and is set for release on 26th October 2018 via Billingham Records.

The first track you played on repeat?
'These Dreams' by Heart.

A song that defines the teenage you?
'Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now' by The Smiths. 

One record you would keep forever?
'Any Other City' by Life Without Buildings.

A song lyric that has inspired you?
Every Leonard Cohen song (and most Joni Mitchell songs). But let's say 'Amelia' by Joni:

“I was driving across the burning desert,
When I spotted six jet planes,
Leaving six white vapour trails across the bleak terrain,
It was the hexagram of the heavens,
It was the strings of my guitar,
Amelia, it was just a false alarm.”

The song that would get you straight on the dance floor?
'Ince Ince' by Selda.

A song you wished you had written?
'Sign ‘O’ The Times' by Prince.

Best song to turn up loud?
'Back In Black' by AC/DC.

A song people wouldn’t expect you to like?
'What Do You Mean?' by Justin Beiber.

Best song to end an all-nighter on?
'The First Big Weekend' by Arab Strap.

Any new bands you are listening to right now?
'Trouble' by Girl Ray.
'In My Head' by Our Girl.
'Something More' by Nabihah Iqbal.
'Baby Luv' by Nilufer Yanya. 

Paul Smith | Silver Rabbit (2018)

Maximo Park | Risk To Exist (2017)

Paul Smith & The Imitations | Break Me Down (2015)

Maximo Park | Apply Some Pressure (2005)