HAVING made his name as a drummer in a chart-topping band, Andy Burrows has shown himself to be a terrific all-round musician and a successful artist in his own right. The Mail spoke with him ahead of his UK tour about his solo career, his work on a highlight of last Christmas’s television schedules and his return to the drum stool with his American friends We Are Scientists.
2012 marked the real emergence of Andy Burrows as an established solo star in his own right, stepping out from the shadow of Johnny Borrell’s massive ego.
Burrows left Razorlight in 2009 for ‘personal reasons’ and has been on a musical journey since working on a variety of projects.
Having released an album under the name I Am Arrows swiftly after his exit from Razorlight and a collaboration with Editors frontman Tom Smith, last year saw Burrows receive deserved acclaim for his excellent album Company.
The album and single Hometown received strong support from Radio 2 and reviews were universally strong and Burrows admitted it was a real boost.
“I do feel really good about it,” he said. “It’s nice to feel like it’s at a point that it is not off the back of Razorlight but as an established solo artist.”
Burrows record with Tom Smith, an album of winter-themed songs called Funny Looking Angels and featuring the sublime single When The Thames Froze, was universally lauded on its release in 2011.
It was one of numerous projects that keep Burrows ticking and he said he was keen to get back in the studio with Smith again.
He said: “I like the fact I continue to keep it varied. I want to do another record with Tom but that probably won’t be this year but I think we will do another record.
“I’ve got other projects in the pipeline but for now I think I want to keep this solo thing going and see where it takes me.”
Last year was also special for Burrows as it marked his first foray into the world of film soundtracks with his work on Channel 4’s The Snowman and the Snowdog.
He wrote the soundtrack along with composer Ilan Eskeri and performed the film’s official single Light The Night which featured in the iconic flying sequence.
Burrows explained how that project came about and why it has inspired him to work on more film soundtracks in the future.
He said: “That came about through Ilan who I wrote it with. My wife had actually been his assistant so I had got to know him through that.
“I have always had an interest in getting into film soundtracks and we were both fans of each other’s work and he thought of me when this project came up.
“It was a great experience as I’ve never done anything like that before. It was an amazing project to be involved with.
“I would definitely like to do a soundtrack again. I enjoyed it and it would be nice to work on things that don’t involve travelling all around the globe when I have a four-year-old daughter at home.”
Burrows takes to the road in the UK later this month for a run of live shows where he will play songs from his latest album – although reproducing any numbers from The Snowman and the Snowdog soundtrack could prove a task too far.
He said: “I’m excited about the tour. It is the first consecutive run of dates I’ve done in this country for this album and the rehearsals are going well.
“The set list will be based mainly around the album but I will throw in some other things from what I’ve done over the years.
“We would like to do some things from The Snowman and the Snowdog and are working on ways of getting that in but being an orchestral piece it is quite hard to get a full orchestra on the stage every night.”
Burrows made his name as a drummer in a band and he still scratches that itch by taking the sticks with American rockers We Are Scientists.
This year will see him hitting the road again with his pals as they release to the world there fourth album and Burrows said he was grateful to have the chance to do it.
He said: “We’ve just made the fourth album. I’ve been living in New York for the last year and working on that. It has been great.
“I love those guys and I’m thankful that they keep the drum stool free for me as I know I mess them around doing all the other things I’ve been working on which will always pose problems.
“The new record sounds great and Keith has written some great music and really upped his game on the songwriting.”
Burrows will also spend 2013 following closely the expected rise to stardom of his friend Tom Odell who has been heavily-tipped for success and has already been awarded this year’s critics’ choice award at the Brits.
“He is a friend of mine and I’ve written a song which is on his album”, Burrows said. “I’m looking forward to watching his career unfold which will be exciting to see.
“It is very exciting and reminds me of the beginnings of Razorlight for me. I would like to think he would come to me for advice if he needs it but his feet are firmly on the ground.”
Burrows performs at Birmingham Temple on Saturday, February 23. See the venue for tickets.