Miles Arnell, Artist to Watch
Q & A Conversation with Miles Arnell.
By Taylor Harrington 12:00pm ET
“For me, it’s a lifelong thing. It was something I feel I was born with… I think it was written within the code of my DNA. As far back as I can remember, I have a memory of of loving music and being influenced by it in everyday life. Like a little baby toddler walking or stumbling around, there was music. It was part of my life.”
Miles Arnell, who coined the term luxury pop, has performed all over Connecticut and New York but his reach is not limited to the East Coast.
Falling in love with music at such a young age has helped Miles’ to master his craft in a way that few artists today can. Whether he is creating a new melody on his keyboard or putting his thoughts into lyrics, Miles’ drive and love for his artistry is unmatched. With his heart poured into everything he does, Miles captivates everyone who hears his music, or is lucky enough to see him perform live.
There is something very special about Miles, and Confessional Magazine cannot wait to see his story unfold.
“Love in My Veins”, Miles’ first release of 2021, will be live on February 3rd.
When did the drive for music become a part of your life?
You know, for me, it’s a lifelong thing. It was something I feel I was born with. I think it was written within the code of my DNA. As far back as I can remember, I have a memory of loving music and being influenced by it in everyday life. Like a little baby toddler walking or stumbling around, there was music. It was part of my life.
Were your parents musicians?
My mom is a singer, and my father’s father, so my grandfather, was a musician. I don’t know if you ever heard of Lee Castle or Tommy Dorsey? They were like 1920s, 30s, 40s. He played the standup bass with them.
Who would you listen to growing up that really opened the musical gates for you?
You know, there’s a few for me. My parents put me in front of these two old school speakers when I was a kid, and they always played either Elvis, The Beatles, or Hall & Oates. Those are sort of random, perhaps, but I just listened to those three over and over and over again.
What have you been working on throughout this quarantine? How has this affected you?
Artists make the bulk of their money and their income from live performances, so that’s been a tremendous shift for everybody from the top to the bottom, from your local musician at your local bar, to people selling out stadiums. No one is performing. There’s that, but for me it’s just the passion and the love and not being able to engage with people and perform. That’s what lights me up. That’s what makes me feel alive. It’s what I’m passionate about: sharing that energy exchange, and all of that is gone right now, which is really unfortunate. For me, I’ve really just refocused on social media, but I’m even more focused on developing different projects that I didn’t have the time for beforehand. Also, I’m understanding myself on a deeper level. I think a lot of people have gone inward during this time, hopefully in a positive way. Some people probably did it in a negative way, and mental health is an issue always, but especially right now. For me, it was really focusing on these other parts of my artistry and writing nonstop… and, you know, making some really funny random videos.
What would you say was your “breakout” moment?
To a degree, I still don’t know if I had that moment. I feel that for me when I started seeing other people at least start to pay attention was probably ten years back or so when I would just play at all the local places in the town I grew up in. Seeing more and more people come in outside of my little group of friends, that was the first time I said, Okay, well, maybe I can build on this. Maybe it’s going to be more than just, you know, something I do in my garage or at the local bar.
So what’s your musical process when you’re writing?
It’s such an intangible thing, and a lot of times, it’s as if it’s just pouring out of the ether. Suddenly, you hear a finished song as if it literally were almost finished and you’re already playing it in your head. You’re like, Oh, my God! You’re scrambling, you’re knocking things over, you’re spitting your food out to grab your phone so that you can get the idea down in your voice memo or run it over to a piano. With me, it’s those kind of moments. Sometimes I do treat it like anyone would treat any job. It’s like, I sit down and I say, okay, right now I’m going to write a song. If I’m in a collaborative session, we sit down and we just we flesh it out as it goes. My favorite moments are those sudden, spontaneous, where the hell did that just come from, moments. Definitely.
Seeing more and more people come in outside of my little group of friends, that was the first time I said, Okay, well, maybe I can build on this. Maybe it’s going to be more than just, you know, something I do in my garage or at the local bar.
What’s your favorite instrument to just pick up and play?
That’s a good question. I really love every instrument, but I don’t play every instrument. I know some people do, and that blows my mind. I do play guitar, piano, bass, and even a little drums here and there. I think I enjoy writing with pianos the most, there’s just something about the beauty of a piano tone that just really gets me emotionally, but guitar is not far behind. So I’d say either guitar or keyboard for me.
What artists are out today that you are listening to the most?
I listen to a lot of modern EDM recently, and I’ve been really getting into what’s going on with house music. Dua Lipa has a new record Future Nostalgia. Incredible work. Bruno Mars 24K Magic, that whole body of work is incredible. My man Charlie Puth, I’ve got to give him credit, he’s killing it. I love everything he’s doing. So really, a lot of people who I’d say create music similar or are comparable to the lane I would categorize myself in if I had to. Not just for inspiration, but just because that’s the music I like.
Do you do all of the writing on your own, collaborate with other musicians, or use songs from ghostwriters?
I have never and I will never just take a song and say, “Thanks! Let me let me sing it now”. No matter how good I thought it was, I would always change something. I don’t succumb to pride very often. I’m very humble in my dealings, I’d say, but that’s where I have that one source of pride. It’s like, I need to put my touch on the creativity of a song. Co-writing, though, absolutely! I co-write all the time, I love co-writes, especially in pop music! The one rule I made for myself is that I won’t take someone else’s song and then sing it.
When you realize that you have this limitless power within you, it’s like, yeah, you’re not going to get the bar of gold tomorrow, but it’s there, and it’s going to be yours. There’s just this light around you now, and suddenly you don’t even care if you get the gold, because you’re surrounded by all this other joy along the way.
Boom, nailed it. Exactly. Then no matter what, in the moment, you’re always grateful, and you’re always happy. You have this childlike excitement, not to get too philosophical here, but that’s part of me. You get this childlike excitement that just envelops you, and it radiates from you. Hopefully you can influence people with that energy. It’s a very potent energy, and I believe that’s where the manifestation comes from. Yes, it does take some time, but it’s not even about the thing that you’re manifesting, it’s about that energy and that feeling of peace and happiness and light, like you just said, boom. I love that.Yeah, supreme, but what was the question even? Yeah, fired up. I got fired up.
The question was what is your five year plan? What are you manifesting?
Great word. I love that word, manifest. I’m a big believer in that. My five year plan is to certainly have a song cracked the top 100 hits and go on at least a tour if not a few by then. I try really hard not to make it about having a certain amount of followers, or this number, or this particular amount in the bank account or anything like that. I just try and keep it focused on abundance in some way, and that in five years, I’ll be even happier than I am now, even more accomplished within. If I feel this way over the next five years, the way I do now, sustained? I think you’ll see it on the outside as well. Some of the things that I want to achieve in five years, I think are beyond even my wildest imagination now.
I see it happening for you. You’re just one of those people that someone can listen to your music, or look at you on stage, and you’re not just up there singing a song, you’re putting on a show. It’s an experience. What is it like walking onto stage? Do you get stage fright?
A very good friend of mine put it this way, he said, “Did you know that excitement and anxiety are really the same feeling just channeled and expressed two different ways?”. I thought about that, and at first, I really had to do a double take and think, What does that mean? But then I understood. The answer is yes, I feel both extreme anxiety and extreme excitement. I just try and express whatever anxiety might be there as excitement. I wouldn’t call it stage fright, I’d call it “stage excite”. It’s the before that gets you. It’s before you’re walking out to all the scenarios in your head, that’s what gets people no matter what they’re doing in life. When you’re about to go skydiving for the first time, it’s only as the plane is taking off you feel that, right? When you’re skydiving, the worst part of it isn’t the actual jump, and it’s the same with this. Once you actually walk out onto the stage and people see you and you’re hearing an applause, and you see your drummer start to play, and you hear the music. Then the tracks start to go, and once you’re in it, you’re in it. It is the most fulfilling feeling imaginable. I feel completely connected to God, to the universe, and to myself in that moment in a really profound way. That just takes over. It’s an amazing, amazing experience.
Once you actually walk out onto the stage and people see you and you’re hearing an applause, and you see your drummer start to play, and you hear the music. Then the tracks start to go, and once you’re in it, you’re in it. It is the most fulfilling feeling imaginable. I feel completely connected to God, to the universe, and to myself in that moment in a really profound way.
I love that, and I love that you’re able to feel that. It’s so cool when people are truly feeling that excitement and doing the thing that they were meant to be doing. Are you working on any projects right now since we’re all stuck inside?
Yeah, that’s about it. I mean, that that’s all we have right now. I have a new single coming out on February 3 called, “Love in My Veins”. Then another single, I would say, either the first week of March, potentially late February as well. I might drop two singles that month, that one will be called, “First Lady”. I’m just going to continue releasing singles. I’m constantly working on the next batch of music. That has kept me focused and powered and distracted in a good way throughout this whole thing, you know? I don’t quite feel the sensation that a lot of people say they have now where I’m ripping my hair out and I don’t know what to do or I’m eating a gallon of ice cream and watching Netflix. It’s like, I’m grateful that I’ve had something to occupy my time.
Tell me about your single that’s coming out on the third.
Yeah, really cool story behind this. The song is actually three years old in reality. It was written three years ago with Shy Boogs, and he’s the gentleman you alluded to in the beginning produced a lot of Fetty Wap’s music today.He went diamond, I saw, and I’m really happy for him. Shout out to Shy Boogs. Good for you, man. I mean, a diamond record. There’s like 44 diamond records of all time. It’s an incredible thing, but we wrote “Love in My Veins” together down at his studio, So Amazin’ Studios in New Jersey. I actually released a different version of it two years ago when I was performing a lot of shows. At the time, I had signed a record deal and we had taken down all my music to redistribute it. That deal didn’t end up working out, it was just a mutual agreement, it just wasn’t really the right fit. I said to myself, I love this song. People liked the song and it always went over well live. So then we actually reproduced it. Shout out to DJ Philly Cheesesteaks, he did a fantastic job with the new version.
That’s so exciting! What did you do to change “Love in My Veins”?
A lot of it will be structure and music changes. The production is completely different. DJ Philly Cheesesteaks, God bless him, he’s just so talented. He’s one of these people, like when you were talking about Bruno Mars, he plays every instrument, and he sent me something back and I was like, “Wow, what you did with the song, I can’t believe you made this decision here. I was just blown away by you, dude.”
It’s amazing how someone can take something that’s yours, and make it even more “you”.
That’s what a great producer does right there. You just said it. Exactly.
I cannot wait to hear this new song, and hopefully you’ll drop the second one this month too. It’s the entertainers that are the ones helping the world stay sane right now, so I want to thank you for your music, your joy, and your story. Your luxury pop is the best, and I appreciate you for being here today, Miles.
I really want to thank you for doing this and for putting yourself out there and for interviewing people like myself, and people who are putting themselves out there and giving them a platform to speak and to share their story. Thank you for putting your good vibe and your light out there because I feel it, just having talked with you right now, and I very much appreciate it. Thank you for having me.
Make sure to follow Miles Arnell on Spotify, Apple Music, and everywhere music is available. Be sure to check out his new single, “Love in My Veins”, on February 3, 2021. Miles can be found on Instagram @MilesArnell and www.MilesArnell.com
Also available for listening everywhere podcasts are available!
Full Interview: www.youtube.com/ConfessionalMagazine