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A.G. Williams of The Prosaics: “Avoid singer-songwriters at all costs”

Diversity is incredibly significant, as long as it is the result of equality of opportunity and not equality of outcome. Everybody should feel they are represented and it is important to see role models in film and television and of course music. I myself am proud to fly the flag for the cripplingly dead-pan and […]

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Diversity is incredibly significant, as long as it is the result of equality of opportunity and not equality of outcome. Everybody should feel they are represented and it is important to see role models in film and television and of course music. I myself am proud to fly the flag for the cripplingly dead-pan and disconcertingly pale.


As a part of our series about rising music stars, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing The Prosaics, aka A.G. Williams, one man with a machine, who through his songs offers both romance and disappointment and is a solution to the vacuous pop that seems to dominate the airwaves. His songs are wry, scornful and cripplingly English. ‘Frown’ the debut single from this uniquely clever and obscure music artist, is out now via DistroKid.

‘Frown’ explores the under-appreciated notion that all emotions should be worthwhile in the human experience. The song controversially triumphs the thought that one should strive to be unhappy. Excommunicate from the cult of silver linings and fake smiles. The track was recorded entirely naked in the dark!

His songs are far from prosaic, with A.G. preaching from a pulpit of keyboards, surrounded on all sides by towers of antique and quirky synthesisers when he performs live. His lyrics are a scathing critique of the world he sees around him — consumed by fickle television ‘idols’, political unrest and Ed Sheeran. Songs of British grit and whimsy paint the slate skies and drizzle of the industrial UK Medway Towns where he now resides (as the Northern ‘mad-chester’ scene did some 30 years ago).

The sound of The Prosaics is best described as a raised eyebrow, a disapproving glance over one’s tortoiseshell spectacles, a jog around an amputee ward, a takeaway curry on a brisk walk home, an explicit funeral wreath or simply as something worth listening to. VERY British!


Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?

I am somewhat convinced that I may be the product of a chemical spillage in a British War factory, some time in the late 70’s, however my mother assures me that I was born in Lewisham, London. This was of course before moving to the beautifully bleak, should’ve, could’ve, would’ve been shut-down, industrial seaside towns of Medway, on the South-East coast of England. I say would’ve of course, if it hadn’t been for the engrained stubbornness of us locals, to stay on existing no matter how grey the sky, or how long the fish n chip shop queue.

Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?

It is not at all interesting to mention that I have always had a love for music, but it is at least slightly interesting to tell you that I have always had a love of; writing, of making people laugh, of irony (which I share with another love of mine- the late Christopher Hitchens), of Scarlett Johansson (for rather other reasons than that of dear Christopher) and of talking about myself. And well, Song-Writing just so happened to tick all but one of those boxes. Let’s see how the new single does and then I’ll have a think about calling up ScarJo.

Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?

I dedicated a song called ‘Dress Sexy At My Funeral’ to the mum of a deceptively tall and muscular Canadian man in the front row of my first ever show, who made the foolish mistake of heckling me. This is very much part of what you would expect at one of my concerts, however in hindsight I do feel both slightly bad and rather lucky for escaping, having changed every other lyric where possible to ‘your mum’. The song I was performing was a cover of an excellent song by Smog.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

There’s lots of funny show anecdotes and things that go wrong on stage that make The Prosaics shows what they are. That is just the way it is, when you preach from a pulpit of keyboards, surrounded on all sides by towers of antique, quirky synthesisers. I’ve had audience members handing me batteries mid-song to fire up old omnichords or impromptu theremin solos when some of the more vintage equipment fails me.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

In my private life, it seems I have set some kind of weekly goal to consume as many Ritz biscuits as I can humanly manage. And whilst that is going quite well, I do feel my health and finances deteriorate. Musically however, my new single ‘Frown’ is a project that is keeping me smiling…

We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?

Diversity is incredibly significant, as long as it is the result of equality of opportunity and not equality of outcome. Everybody should feel they are represented and it is important to see role models in film and television and of course music. I myself am proud to fly the flag for the cripplingly dead-pan and disconcertingly pale.

That would certainly be one colourful flag.

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

1. Stop trying to be a guitarist- you’ll get there and the consequent increase in female interest will be unorthodox-edly negligible. Stick to synths. Is an example really needed here?

2. Do not believe everything you read in musician interviews. Example: Exhibit A.

3. Avoid singer-songwriters at all costs. They are as bleak and unoriginal a bunch as you will ever meet. I am afraid I do not possess the upper body strength to provide examples here either.

4. Try to provide examples when asked to in written interviews to increase your chances of being asked back. Damn it.

5. Tell anybody who bangs on about the ‘creaminess’ of guitar tones or the ‘warmth’ of their DAW plugin where to shove it. They can’t hear a difference, they just have a small p — s.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

Have you ever thought about how rare it is for a band to become successful?

Your ideal member has time on their hands, talent, looks, charisma, drive (both psychologically and in terms of owning a van) …and then you need to find that four or five more times! Heaven knows that’s one mighty ask anywhere, yet alone Medway in the UK!

Best off going it alone if you can.

You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

Enormous influence, yes, I would agree with that.

I think I would want to inspire the anti-movement movement. People are always movementing. Nobody knows what they’re complaining about and even fewer know what to do about it. Be honest with yourself and do what you can.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

Too many people to mention, so here are just the ones I forgot to buy Christmas presents for:

· Andrew Kesby (continually supported me in the Kent & Medway music scene)

· Keith Nickson-Romagna (ditto, and a damn good sound engineer)

· All of my close friends & family (for tolerating, supporting, underwear flinging etc.)

· Davey Ray Moor (from CousteauX — hell of a bloke, I owe him a lot) And too many specific stories to give enough time to here.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

A great musician once said:

‘Why smile about town? It’s ok to be down, frown!’ — and I feel that is particularly poignant in a time where there is this bizarre international obsession with being happy. The quote continues ‘Is feeling not enough? It’s real.’

I just reckon that’s something to think about.

Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂

SacrJo of course! Although please apologise on my behalf for calling her that twice in this interview, I know she doesn’t like it.

Failing that, of course I wouldn’t turn down a vegan brekkie with Morrissey, but then I hear he’s not huge on people either, so I worry we would both just be sitting there not talking.

How can our readers follow you online?

I cannot stand social media! So please go to my website www.theprosaics.co.uk and sign up to my mailing list to stay up to date.

This was very meaningful, thank you so much! We wish you continued success!

Many thanks.


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