Amy Macdonald: I want to write songs that mean something

Amy Macdonald releases her new album on February 17.
Amy Macdonald releases her new album on February 17.

It was a very cheery Amy Macdonald that came on the phone when I grabbed her for a chat about her new upcoming album. But then, she has a lot to be happy about.

The 29-year-old Glaswegian is set to release ‘Under Stars’, her first studio album in five years on February 17 as well as embarking on a tour later this year.

The new record is something that she is really looking forward to.

“I can’t wait,” she agreed. “Like you said, it’s my first album since 2012 and I’m excited and nervous to get it out there. The reactions I’ve had to the songs so far have been great. It’s been about two and a half years in the making which is the longest I’ve ever taken with an album. I took most of 2014 and 2015 to sit down and write the songs – I wish I could sit and write ten hits in one go but I can’t!” she laughed.

“Last year so me hit the studio to record it and now it’s finally good to go.”

But there was one song that saw her rewriting it from scratch...

“The track ‘Down By The Water’ is one of my favourites on the album, and I sat down with my bassist Jimmy (Sims who has been part of Amy’s band since 2007) and we fooled around and had a great song at by the end,” Amy explained. “However, when we had recorded it, I wasn’t quite happy with it. I had to speak with the label to see if we could get back and re-record it and start again and luckily they agreed! The song that appears on the album is the one that I am now completely happy with.

“But writing with Jimmy is not something that I’ve done before,” Amy continued. “I usually write on my own, I’ve never sat down and written with someone before, but that time it just seemed to work.”

Amy cites her friends as being the inspiration for many of her songs.

“My friends are just normal people, living everyday lives,” she said. “They will speak their minds, so their complaints and feelings help shape what I write about. I want to write songs that mean something. I want my songs to be moving and have meaning. I can write about both sad and happy topics, and while the songs on ‘Under Stars’ are upbeat, there is a sad tinge to some of them.

“I feel so proud of the songs and I’m so pleased with the record. There are so many incredible moments and I really feel this record features some of my best work. I’m excited to finally share it with my fans and I believed that there is so much that will appeal to new fans as well.”

Amy has also announced her first UK tour in four years taking in Edinburgh, Inverness and Aberdeen.

“I can’t wait to head out on the road and play my new songs to my fans,” she said. “I now have four albums worth of material to bring to the stage. I’m both excited and nervous but I wouldn’t have it any other way!”

‘Under Stars’ is out on February 17.

An acoustic version of ‘Down By The Water’, recorded live at RAK studio, is available to watch here: youtube

Catch Amy on tour:

Edinburgh Usher Hall – April 5

Inverness Ironworks – April 12

Aberdeen Beach Ballroom April 13.

Tickets are on sale now at amy macdonald.