He graciously provided us with a kick ass soundtrack for the Guidetogay.com Mardi Gras soundtrack, and now, Sydney boy, Damien Mancell is kicking ass on all the charts, making his debut single 'Be With You Tonight' one of the hottest dance/pop tracks of the winter. We caught up with Damien during a very hectic week to find out more about Sydney's freshest singer/songwriter...
We obviously know you very well (firstly, thanks for providing the awesome soundtrack for our mardi gras coverage!) but for those that don't know Damien Mancell... can you sum yourself up if possible? well..And thanks for the Mardi Gras coverage, as it kind of kick started this whole whirlwind. Im a sydney based singer songwriter that's been working behind the scenes for years now. I worked with dancers, artists, film directors, other bands, boy bands etc.I had been an active member of the GLBT community for many years now & I've worked in and out of the Sydney club scene for years. I really enjoyed working behind the scenes, but now its time for me to do my own thing. So I hooked up with one of Sydney's most talented writer/producers, Steve Mellare, and decided to write a few tracks. I met Steve whilst working on someone else's project. A few tracks turned into a larger body of work. Then the possibility of an album. I was well aware of who Steve was, and knew he was just the guy to help me deliver something substantial. We just clicked in the studio. I had been producing for others for years, but when it came to writing for me, I needed his guidance. I wanted to make a club record, as I love that scene. I live with a DJ, alot of my friends are DJ's, and I place myself firmly in that world.
Your very active in the music and gay scenes in Australia, which is the bitchiest? lol ooh..tough question, both are bitchy but in different ways .. the gay scene is a "why dont I have that.. lets cut him down" mentality, where as the Music industry is a "kill him at all costs" mentality. You need a thick skin to survive. The gay scene is less harsh, hard to believe , but when your playing with the big nasty boys , they can "out bitch' any seasoned queen anyday. The only problem is when you mix the two, that can, and has been disaster!!LOL
So your single has been out for a week now - how does it feel? Over the moon, Its taken so long to get it here. The reaction is a little overwhelming. Its kind of cool that people I dont know have bought it for some reason, like it, and have joined my facebook page. From all over the world. I couldn't believe that many people bought it on the day it came out. That motivates me to do more, and deliver a great 2nd single, great remixes, great show and a killer album...
Why did you choose to go with "Be With You Tonight" as your lead single? I chose it because it was a great introduction to what I am about. I love the song, the remixes are awesome. I felt that this would be a great way to introduce myself to the world. Its also a very catchy song, and it sticks in your head for days. I seem to have made the right choice..
What's the best thing about being a singer/songwriter? The best thing is being able to express myself honestly and to be able to tell my story in a way that people can relate to. Im very lucky that people actually like what I do. So as a songwriter it gives me a little boost when it does well.
Can we expect any shows? Appearances? Maybe even Sleaze Ball or Mardi Gras Shows? Im planning a few things for late july in the show department. I personally cant wait.. As for Mardi Gras? Hell YES! I am a staunch supporter of Mardi Gras. I think they are an important part of the Sydney culture, and will do anything I can to support them. I dont believe Sydney would be "sydney" without Mardi Gras. If they ever asked me to work for them in any way, I would say yes
What are your plans for future releases? My plans are to promote this single (Be With You Tonight), working the clubs, and getting people away from their couches and back on the dancefloor Haha. Because of the success of the first single , it looks good for a second single in September/ October, with a new batch of killer remixes, and then the album for Christmas. Im also planning some shows, and some cool multi media aspects to what I do to make the music more accessible to people. Can I just take this opportunity to thank you guys for all your support...it means alot!
You can check out Damien on any iTunes store across the globe, Amazon.com, Walmart, Napster, CDBaby and every leading digital retailer. Check out more on Damien at http://www.damienmancell.com