Today, we will talk about “Your Man” by The Cumberland River Project. This song is fun and makes us think of rock music with a touch of blues from Hagen in Germany where Frank Renfordt made it along with his skilled team.
Frank is the main person in a program. He works with Simon on drums, Dennis plays guitar and Jenny sings backup vocals as well Dima adds horn sounds too. They’ve made a song based on old stories like Joe Cocker and Tina Turner. It sounds sweet with ’70s and ’80s blues-rock feel in it.
“Your Man” is a story about a guy who wants to impress country girl. It mixes old blues style with new fashion.
So, let’s relax and talk to Frank about his music journey. We will discuss what makes him creative and the story behind this fantastic song.
Listen to Your Man below
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What is your stage name
The Cumberland River Project
Is there a story behind your stage name?
Nashville ‚Music City‘ is located on the banks of the Cumberland River and it’s my favorite town beside of my hometown ‚Hohenlimburg‘ in Germany. Most of my songs are more in the style of American Country music or Americana music and the home of this kind of music is in those Cumberland area in Kentucky and Tennessee.
Where do you find inspiration?
From life! You can write a song about everything and sometimes it is like a therapy. and all my life I have listened to many different kinds of music, so there is a long playlist in my mind.
What was the role of music in the early years of your life?
I liked to listen to my brother’s tapes. He was seven years ahead of me and he heard all the cool stuff of the sixties like The Beatles, The Stones, The Bee Gees and so on and I think it had an influence. I tried to sing along despite I couldn’t understand anything.
Are you from a musical or artistic family?
Not really, my mother was a very creative person. I think she could have been an artist in other circumstances. She liked to sing in the choir at church.
Who inspired you to be a part of the music industry?
First who inspired me was my older brother who started to play bass guitar in a rock band in the age of seventeen and that was a very cool thing and I wanted to be like him.
How did you learn to sing/write/to play?
I got a guitar from my parents when I was ten years old and they organized guitar lessons. As soon as I had learned to play some chords I started to write somw crappy songs. I learned to write better songs many years later with the help of experienced songwriters from the Nashville area which was only possible because of the internet.
I guess I’ve also read every book about songwriting and in addition I have attended a couple of songwriting retreats and seminars in the US and in UK. I also started to take vocal lessons some years ago, so I plan to sing my songs more and more by myself.
What was the first concert that you ever went to and who did you see perform?
The first big concert was a Genesis concert, it was in the late seventies. It was very impressive and I was a big fan of that kind of music in those years.
How could you describe your music?
I love to hear guitars playing, I like organic music, real instruments and vocal harmonies and this leads to my style of music, which is a mix of country, rock, pop & folk music, very organic and most of the time with meaningful lyrics.
Describe your creative process.
There is no fixed process. In the case of ‚Your Man‘ it all started with the bass line and I hummed some words to it and it all built up quite naturally. But sometimes I write the lyrics first, or I have a catchy chorus in mind and built the song around it. Once the song structure is finished I consider the arrangement and look for the right people to help me to bring my song and my ideas to life.
What is your main inspiration?
What musician do you admire most and why?
I cannot answer with only one name. There are so many I admire for different reasons. Since ever I love The Eagles because of their catchy songs and vocal harmonies, I love Chris Stapelton because of his unique singing capabilities, as a songwriter I admire Lori McKenna and I have to confess I’m a ‚Swiftie‘, I love everthing about Taylor Swift.
Did your style evolve since the beginning of your career?
I started to write songs which I thought could fit into the Country Billboard Charts, I wanted to write something with commercial potential. But it is rather difficult to make it in the country community when you are not living in Nashville. Today I don’t care so much about this. My style is less genre specific anymore, but still very country related, because I love that kind of music.
Who do you see as your main competitor?
Making music and writing songs is neither a business nor a competition for me. So there are no competitors, only likeminded people, friends and colleagues – a great community.
What are your interests outside of music?
No 1 of course is my family. I like to read a good book, doing some sports, gardening … not enough time for everything.
If it wasn’t a music career, what would you be doing?
I’m an independent artist and actually I can’t make a living from my music, so I still have my job as a purchasing manager. But if it wouldn’t be music, I would try to write a book, I think I need to be creative.
What is the biggest problem you have encountered in the journey of music?
To find the people who like my music. I know they are out there, but without a big promotion budget its hard to break through the noise and get heard by the people who are into the kind of music I make.
If you could change one thing in the music industry, what would it be?
I think there is not such a thing as ‚the music industry‘, today the market for music is really diversified. It was never easier to release music and it was never more difficult to gain attention. But there’s nothing to complain about this, there’s no way back. You don’t really need the music industry anymore, you just need to be outstanding, which is as difficult as it ever was.
What are your plans for the coming months?
I’m gonna release an other single end of January and then – probably in March – an EP with six new Country/Americana songs which I will sing by myself. It’s nearly finished and I’m really excited about it, because these songs are more personal than what I wrote before and I love each of them like a baby.
Do you have any artistic collaboration plans
Not really, but I’m open to collaborate with everyone if we are on the same page.
What message would you like to give to your fans?
Chase your dreams and enjoy the journey AND stay tuned and look forward to some very nice songs to be released soon.