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A Q&A INTERVIEW WITH TONY WEST OF BLACKLIST UNION
Spill Magazine: What initially inspired you to write songs? (childhood trauma, happiness, money?)
Tony West: Life and feeling compelled to express myself.
Spill Magazine: Can you remember the first time you wrote a song? Describe it to me.
Tony West: Yeah I was six and it was about a bear chasing me.
Spill Magazine: Who gave you the support to keep writing in the beginning? Who did you play the early songs for?
Tony West: Actually nobody gave me any support. I kept going despite negativity, trials, and tribulations.
Spill Magazine: What do you feel like when you play one of your songs and people applaud? Is it an affirmation or an irritation?
Tony West: It is the best feeling in the world and a great validation. I do not know why someone would be irritated by that.
Spill Magazine: Professional songwriters spend years on their craft. Why not use their songs?
Tony West: I have spent years on my craft and I am a professional songwriter. As for covers, anyone that knows the history of Blacklist Union knows we have done quite a few cover songs.
Spill Magazine: What is better about a song sung by the writer?
Tony West: I would have to say they live it, they write it, and they perform it with passion; however, a cover could have that for someone depending on the artist.
Spill Magazine: Are you more of a singer or more of a songwriter?
Tony West: I am a singer and a songwriter equally.
Spill Magazine: Reading through some of your social media posts you have had a lot of personal trauma and disappointment in your life. What keeps you enduring? Do you find that song-writing for you is a cathartic process?
Tony West: We all have things we go through in life. People relate to realness. Authenticity. And yes songwriting is very healing and therapeutic for me and most people.
Spill Magazine: Who is your favourite singer?
Tony West: Andrew Wood from Mother Love Bone.
Spill Magazine: What was one of your most memorable times onstage?
Tony West: When I split my pants and I was going commando and my cock was hanging out!
Spill Magazine: Which food are you addicted to?
Tony West: Salad.
Spill Magazine: Where would you like to live?
Tony West: Nashville
Spill Magazine: The person who helps you the most at times of trouble?
Spill Magazine: Something you wish everyone had?
Spill Magazine: What genre of music are you playing? How would you describe it to someone not familiar with Blacklist Union?
Street Rock…like Aerosmith meets the Ramones.
Spill Magazine: Do you have any spare-time interests and hobbies outside music?
Exercise, healing and hanging with my kids.