London-based pop duo OMYO (pronounced Ohm-Yo, an acronym for ‘Our Music Your Opinion’) is made up of Oxfordshire-born Tom McCorkell (24, vocals) and William Edward (27, music and backing vocals) who have been making music together since they took on a bet to write a song one New Year’s Eve.
After finding their sound in a mix of infectious acoustic and synth-inspired urban-pop, the band has gone on to play the UK festival circuit including a set at Wireless Festival, and have been featured on by Charlie Sloth on BBC Radio 1 Xtra.
EP: We’ve been meaning to catch up with you guys for a bit – so what have you been up to since we last spoke?
William: Crikey, its all been a bit crazy! We played 40 shows in the second third of last year, released new videos and singles and have started writing for people all over the world. Quite crazy as our first proper single and video release was in May. We started directing our own videos and expanded developing artists of all genres on our label.
EP: You’ve released a new single, ‘Goodbye Is Easy’ – that was co-written with Newton Faulkner – how did that come about?
William: When I went on my gap year after dropping out of university (don’t worry I went back to another) I was sharing a bunk bed with Newton’s manager! She checked up on me a few years later and saw that we were doing music and she liked what we were writing so invited us in for 2 days with Newton and his brother too. Was a really cool moment for us cause his music was huge to us.
EP: Are there any inspirations behind your songs?
Tom: Most of our inspiration come from life experiences or situations we find ourselves in. It’s much easier to write a song which you can relate to, as you can really get the emotion across in the song. Also we tend to find that other people also share the same experiences like we do. Allowing them to relate to the song in some way.
EP: Talk us through the new album you’re releasing?
William: So we are releasing it in three parts, the album is called ‘Introduction’ and and is basically 3 EPs together. So We have 5 songs out now, 5 more on march 30th and then 6/7 more on may 15th. We wanted to be able to release a big volume of work and not to overwhelm people with choice so by doing this I think it gives them a chance to digest it and really feel all the influences and varieties of how we write.
EP: You’ve been quoted saying your music together began after a drunken New Year’s Eve bet to write a song, what is that song called?
Tom: The first song which we wrote together was called ‘Day You Went Away’ and it was 5.30 mins long! It’s defiantly wasn’t the best song we’ve come up with for sure, but it worked well and had some catchy hooks. Wasn’t bad for a first attempt. After that we continued writing and producing, creating cleaner sounds each time.
EP: Where did you guys meet?
Tom: We actually met and our local pub. We kinda met briefly the week before and then properly introduced ourselves New Year’s Eve. After chatting the majority of the night we agreed that we should meet up a few days later and try and create a song from scratch. And then we went from there.
EP: What advice do you have for anyone starting up in the music industry, and what if anything would you do differently, and why?
William: Just be stubborn, stubborn in how hard you work, how you don’t listen to people putting gyou down, stubborn in realisng really anything is possible, stubborn in sticking to your style if you really believe in it. I think if you start listening to too many people then you lose who you are and your authenticity, and its really easy to think that other people are correct. Especially when you are new and not so wise to how many bad people there are in the industry.
I’d probably believe in our business skills quicker than we did, we relied on a lot of people’s promises to help push our brand when actually all it took was some confidence from us to master it and to do it even better.
EP: What artists should we be looking out for?
William: Solo Mario – we’ve been working with him on his debut EP and the style is really special, hes smart and knows the value of a great pop song, so we have been combining hip hop with pop style hooks etc. The other artists on his debut are insane and his shows are gonna be epic. So keep an eye out!
Loop – we went to uni together and ive really been enjoying all her music and it seems to just keep getting better and better, shes got a unique style in a very competitive area of music.
Santelmo – is a great producer/writer who works out of our studio in Brixton and hes got some great projects on the way, his talent is insane.
EP: If you had to turn your duo into a super group and could chose 4 other artists to join you, who would you choose?
Tom: It’s a tough question as there are so many amazing artists out there!
Think we would choose Travis Barker on the drums as he’s insane, and reckon he would be a good laugh.
Guitar and vocals, would have to be Jimi Hendrix! Adds that cool edge that we love. And he’s so talented.
Bass would have to be Flea from Red Hot Chilli Peppers. Always loved the band from a young age. I think he and Travis would tear up the show!
Keys and vocals I would randomly pick John Legend! We’re both into our soul music and his voice is amazing. Also he’s brilliant on the piano. Would be amazing for the slow numbers.
EP: If you could only listen to one song each for the rest of your life, on a continuous loop, which song would it be?
Tom: mine would have to be ‘Stand by Me‘ Ben E King. Love the song so much. Such a classic that everyone knows and can sing along to. When the strings come in it takes you to another place.
EP: You’ve been documented playing at various UK festivals, but what is your craziest festival experience?
Tom: I would say our gig in Poland last year. It took us almost 4 hours to get to the festival as the driver got lost. When we arrived we had to run and go straight on stage in the clothes we arrived in with no warm up. Everything happened so fast, and the show was over before we knew it.
EP: What question do you wish someone would ask you in an interview but nobody ever does?
William: Would you like some of these Percy Pigs?