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British Tenor Alfie Boe Talks Trust Album and Fixing Cars

Still relatively new to America, Alfie Boe is releasing his latest album Trust on April 29th, which is already available in the UK, his home base.

This charming Brit first entertained co-workers and customers as a mechanic where he would sing while fixing cars.

Since his humble beginnings, Boe has made a name for himself around the world with three consecutive platinum albums and has been dubbed “opera’s working-class hero” by Britain’s Sunday Express.  Not only does Alfie Boe rise above opera snobbery, but he also has some acting chops to go along with his beautiful voice.  His performance in Baz Luhrmann’s Broadway production of La Bohème was highly acclaimed.

Half Full had the honor of talking to this amazing tenor and we’re excited to share it with you.

Half Full Magazine: I wanted to talk to you, first about how you got started in the music industry.  I understand you were a mechanic first?

Alfie Boe: Yeah, I used to work in a car factory in the north of England.  I used to also sing for a hobby in local operatic societies and things like that.  Singing was always a big hobby for me and I really enjoyed it.  I got the opportunity to break into the professional industry when I was working at the car factory.  I was working on a car and the customer, whose car I was working on, overheard me singing along to the radio.  He advised me to come down to London and audition for a company that was wanting cast members for their next UK tour.  So I went down to London and sang for them.  They liked what they heard and invited me back for a second audition and then offered me a job as part of their chorus.  That was really how I got my chance.  I was very lucky.

HF: Very cool!  Do you ever miss working on cars or do you now do that as a hobby?

AB: [Laughs] No, but I liked my time working on the cars, but singing on stage is a cleaner job.

HF: Now you have a new album, Trust, coming out on April 29th… How does it compare to your first couple of albums?

AB: It’s just a different genre of music really.  A lot of my albums change styles and genres.  This one in particular is a style of music I love listen to and I love to sing.  It has sort of country elements, and a bit of gospel as well.  And folk ballads.  I grew up listening to a lot of that as a kid, so it’s music close to my heart, too.

HF: Is there someone that really inspired you musically?

AB: Well, my biggest education of music in my early days was my father’s record collection.  My dad used to play a lot of different styles of music by a lot of different artists.  Caruso, Glen Miller, Slim Whitman.  So he really influenced me a lot with my interest in music.  I think that’s why I diversify a lot.  It’s a fun thing to do.  I don’t really change the way I sing though.  I always use the voice I worked at for years and still use the same technique.  I don’t really manufacture a different sound when I have to adapt to a different genre of music.  I don’t really see any difference.

HF: That’s really cool.  I’m sure it gives an interesting take on some of people’s favorite classic songs.

AB: Yeah, yeah.  The album has a lot of classic songs, like you say.  I don’t really put music into a category.  I like to think if a song has stood the test of time then it can be given the title of classic, you know?

HF: Will you be touring any time soon?

AB: I’m hoping so!  We’re in talks about touring this album and other music that I’ve recorded in the past.  There will be a tour that will incorporate a lot of different styles of music obviously.  It will be great to hit the road.  I’d love to.

HF: What is your goal for the immediate future?  You know, within the next couple of years.

AB: I try not to look too far ahead.  I try to live day-to-day.  I don’t have a wish list of what I want to achieve, but playing to audiences in America is very important to me.  I want to play around as much as I can.  The audiences in America are fantastic.

HF: For our magazine’s theme, we encourage living life with a Half Full attitude, which basically means to have a positive outlook on life.  What advice do you have for people to live that way?

AB: I think you just have to have a vision of your goals and what you want to achieve.

Trust comes out on April 29th featuring classic renditions of “Georgia On My Mind” and “You’ve Got A Friend”.

For more on Alfie Boe: www.alfie-boe.com

5 thoughts on “British Tenor Alfie Boe Talks Trust Album and Fixing Cars

  1. Thanks for the interview. Alfie Boe can be seen in Series 2 of Mr Selfridge showing now on PBS. He appears as singer Richard Chapman coming to the rescue of old friend Lady Mae Loxley and sings a few period songs including a traditional version of Danny Boy which is a bonus on his album Trust along with a cool contemporary version. It’s on air in the next two weeks. Hope you enjoy his fabulous new album. Lovely songs, beautifully sung from an all round nice guy.

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