I received a charming email from Isaac asking if I would have a listen to his E.P and consider putting him on at Youth Anthems.  Introducing himself as a singer-songwriter who also performed magic and dance I couldn’t really not investigate! Following a visit to his Bandcamp page and several listens to his fantastic “Gravity” E.P I was a convert and booked him right away for the next available Youth Anthems gig.  The first thing to get straight here is that Isaac is not being booked because he is young, he is not a “comedy” booking so that people can be amused/entertained like watching baby videos on Facebook.  Isaac is not only an incredibly proficient musician but even more importantly he’s a great songwriter and can turn a great lyrical twist when needed.  I’m honoured that we can have him come and travel from Halifax to play at Youth Anthems and I’m sure you’re all going to enjoy his set too.  Have a gander at his Facebook page too so you can see which festivals he’s playing this Summer.

Introduce yourself!

Hi! I’m Isaac, and I am a 14-year-old goofball who has been armed with a ukulele and put in front of an audience for your entertainment! Watch me pretend to know what I’m doing as I work my way through my eclectic originals, comedic covers, and more! Feel free to laugh (with or at me), clap, dance, and sing along!

How did you first discover the Ukulele and what attracts you to it over other instruments?

I got my first ukulele for my second birthday, and my instant reaction was to pick it up the wrong way around and chew the tuning pegs. I started ukulele lessons when I was 5, and being the professional I was back then, I said absolutely nothing, and then cried when my teacher tried to put stickers on the frets. I love the uke because it’s the only thing I can get my teeny fingers to play

Who would you say your favourite bands are and which would you say influence your own music?

I absolutely love Queen! I am also madly in love with David Bowie, and I am big fans of Biscuithead and the Biscuitbadgers, Hope and Social, Fire Beneath the Sea, and the Brett Domino Trio. (If you haven’t already, you should definitely check them all out!). I am mostly influenced by the likes of Tim Minchin, Bill Bailey, Bo Burnham, and Jon Cozart.

How did you get into magic and does this ever come into your live performances?

I got into magic by watching Dynamo (who I was honoured to meet a few years ago), and a magic set that I got for Christmas. I used to put on shows in my living room and the dog would be my assistant. I would have my mum pick card after card until she found the right one by chance, and act as if it was a miracle! I practiced and practiced until I was accepted into the Junior Magic Circle, and then went from there. I do find ways to intertwine my magic and my music, especially at the festivals I do, and sometimes I sneak a bit into my stage shows!

What sort of gigs do you normally play and how do you find performing live?

I will play for anyone that will listen to me, as I am keen, eager, and a little bit desperate. I have an exciting summer of festivals and gigs lined up, including Geronimo, Solfest, and Eden to name a few, but you can also find me busking in my local square when my mum is sick of me and my electronic kazoo!

What do you friends think about your music? Do you ever perform at School?

My friends are sick to the bone of me and my silly little guitar. At every end-of-year assembly I will get up, and everyone will groan because It’s me again wasting their time with a song about how much I love snow, or something like that… In all seriousness though, my friends are really supportive of me (if not a little bemused). They always cheer me on, once they’ve finished laughing at my own expense!

We’re big fans of cakes at Youth Anthems so what’s your favourite pudding?

I’m a vegan, and when I’ve been to other Youth Anthem events I’ve got some great vegan cake (a chocolate brownie, if I remember correctly…)! I think that would definitely be up there in my top ten pudding list, but I think my all-time favourite pudding would have to be those vegan cornettoes you can get from Tesco! They’re great!

Do you have any advice for other teenagers thinking about performing music?

Don’t be afraid to be different! Try not to be like every other teenager with a guitar, half-heartedly strumming their way through Oasis or Radiohead. Feel free to experiment with different instruments, styles, and even try writing some songs- remember that the world is your musical oyster! Above all though, have fun! If you’re not enjoying yourself when playing music, then you’re not doing it right!