My Inspiration: Jack Mylchreest – In My Stride | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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North-East alt-country artist Jack Mylchreest releases his debut EP, In My Stride, an exciting collection of tracks that showcases the breadth of his songwriting talents. Anthemic stadium sounds, bluesy barnstormers and a ballady duet (with Lauren Shaw) it’s got everything a roots/country/folk fan would want to hear.

Here, the artist tells us about the inspirations of each track on the EP… 

In My Stride is my Debut EP, and my first serious release as a solo artist. This project really started as me just wanting to drop a couple of singles; I had a few songs that were ready to go but I kept writing and writing, so in the end me and my producer realised we’d be better forming a cohesive EP instead. 

My biggest songwriting inspirations come from artists like Tom Petty, Bryan Adams and Chris Stapleton. Tom Petty covers such a wide range of genres across his music and I love how no 2 albums are the same, sporting great rock roots numbers but then also some delicate acoustic tracks. When it comes to Bryan Adams, I just think he is the master of writing a hit song, his lyrics are simple and his melodies are memorable. Finally there’s Chris Stapleton, who is certainly my biggest country influence. The ambient production and instrument choices he makes in his songs really gives them that outlaw country vibe, which I absolutely love. Between these 3 big names, I was able to decide the feel I was aiming for as an artist and a writer.

Sober opens up the EP with a bang. It’s a song about someone who was at the top of their game, experiencing great success, but unfortunately went off the rails due to struggles with addiction. I wanted to replicate guitar tones and riffs I heard people like Chris Stapleton and The Bros Landreth use, that rugged, and authentic guitar twang with lots of overdrive. I had this really cool riff idea and a hook for the chorus, then it sort of wrote itself really, it’s a no-nonsense country tune.

Home for Good 
This track is about a friend of a friend who moved away for work. She moved to France for a few months, but quickly realised that it wasn’t for her and she became incredibly homesick. This pushed her to finish her job there and move back to be with her best friend. It’s a soothing, bluesy number, with a really lovely feel to it. The solos and vibes of this track were really inspired by my love of John Mayer and blues music as a whole. When writing, I knew it was going to be a ‘Stratocaster’ tune, serving up very clean but classy tones.

Tryin’ is about someone I know who went through a really tough time in their relationship. They separated from their partner as they felt the spark had disappeared. It became clear to me and the band that this track had summer single potential, so we went after that indie-pop vibe, turning it into a tune you could really bop your head to. Tryin was originally inspired by a musical hero of mine, Mr James Bay. James is a phenomenal guitar player and writer, so I approached this song thinking of how he would structure his own; fast paced but with a really meaningful lyric, and of course a catchy riff.

Safe with You 
Ah, The song that started it all. I did a showreel back in 2021 with the producer and cinematographer Alex Williams. When we finished we had an hour spare, so he asked if I had anything I wanted to try, an original perhaps? I said I’ve actually got this song, it’s not finished but we can give it a go. That song was ‘Safe with You’. We cut a live lounge version of it and the track was born! The lyrics focus on my daily battle with anxiety and the difference one person can make to your outlook on life; with the track’s vibe taking inspiration from Morgan Wade, Luke Combs and Brothers Osborne to name a few. 

Put simply Wait is my love letter to my partner Sophie, the absolute light of my life. She makes me a better person and I’m just so grateful to have her with me day in and day out. The lyrics centre around the fact that I would do anything for her, since I know she’d always do the same for me. This was originally intended to be a solo, but after improvising some harmonies during a live session with my friend Lauren Shaw, me and the producer agreed she just had to be on the studio version. The song grew from a simple piano ballad into an all out soundtrack piece, not my usual thing, but I couldn’t be more pleased with it. This one was really inspired by the piano player in my band, Lyndon Philliskirk. I’d envisioned it being just me and an acoustic guitar, but the second he recorded his piano part, I knew that needed to be the focal point, ‘Wait’ wouldn’t have been the same without him.

Lastly Homesick closes the EP. It’s just me and a guitar, no tricks, no thrills. The song is about going away to a new place, meeting new people, and just not wanting to come home. I wrote this one many years ago while heading home, aboard a plane without a guitar. I feel like this song wasn’t inspired by a musician or artist, it was just me writing how I felt, and back then I wasn’t even thinking of putting out original music, how times change.

I hope this EP brings as much enjoyment to you as it did me making it, and I hope you found it interesting learning what inspired its creation. These songs mean so much to me and I’m so proud of what my band, my producer and myself have been able to accomplish.

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