Certainly one to watch, rising UK producer/DJ Ben Duncombe, better known by his artist name Franklin, has been placing his mark on the music world and showcasing his incredible artistic talents; having remixed the likes of Mabel and James Arthur and topping the UK dance chart. Breaking out into the dance/house scene with his first feature – a collaboration with Nina Nesbitt and John Gibbons; he has since amassed over 15 million streams on Spotify to date, and is certainly showing no signs of slowing down. Late last month, Franklin released his latest single Everybody Dance – a reworking of the CHIC 1978 iconic dance smash hit ‘Everybody Dance’ – that saw him team up with the likes of the legendary Nile Rodgers and global superstar DJ Cedric Gervais. Following this, we sat down with Franklin to talk about the new track, his journey so far, and goals for the future.
BM: How have you been during this crazy year?
Franklin: Obviously everything’s been a shock to the system this year, the highs and lows for me have had an extra punch for sure. Having said that I can’t complain too much having just released a new single with an icon in Nile Rodgers…Also leaving the year behind knowing there actually could be some kind of return to normality in 2021 has been such a lift.
BM: How have you found the pandemic, and the craziness of this year, has affected you as a creative and an artist? Has it changed your creative processes and the way you’ve been producing music, or impacted your creative drive and inspiration?
Franklin: This year has definitely reaffirmed my drive and passion for doing what I do. Admittedly, I really struggled 6 weeks or so after the first lockdown to find any inspiration for making music. I think like everyone else, I had done absolutely nothing elsewhere in my life that might have sparked that initial bit of creativity etc…I’ve learnt now not to force anything if I’m really struggling with a song or production. Taking a break and focusing on something totally different like exercising has really helped with this. Now I’m just extra hungry now to achieve the goals I’ve set out for next year!
BM: Tell us about your year in music so far?
Franklin: Despite it being such a dreadful year for obvious reasons, 2020 has definitely been my most exciting and successful year to date. I think the main highlights off the top of my head were releasing an official remix for Mabel, putting out my first of many club-focused singles with Nathan C (despite there being no clubs to play it haha) and of course the latest new single with Cedric Gervais and Nile Rodgers – Everybody Dance!
BM: So with the recent release of your latest track Everybody Dance, which saw you team up with two incredible artists – Nile Rodgers and Cedric Gervais! What was that collaboration like, and how did it come about?
Franklin: Without a doubt the most exciting moment of my career so far. Initially it was a total coincidence that me and Cedric both had really similar ideas of using the same ‘Everybody Dance’ sample. A mutual friend of ours heard and realised before putting us in contact together. Me and Cedric figured it made sense to work up a version together and once we did, the aim was to just get Nile’s blessings on the track before putting it out. When he got back to us saying he loved it so much he wanted to re-record his guitars and be a part of the record, we were absolutely buzzing, as you could imagine…
BM: Tell us a bit about the overall creative process for the track, and what you were all hoping to achieve with the single?
Franklin: Like I said previously, me and Cedric worked together on a new version because we both had really similar ideas on what we wanted to do with the record. The main aim being to stay true to the original in its sense of positivity and great energy. Then it was just about getting the important thumbs up from Nile…instead we got him re-recording his world-class guitar parts and featuring on the song!
BM: How do you feel now that Everybody Dance is out? What did, and do, you want listeners to take away from the track?
Franklin: I’m absolutely dreaming now that it’s finally out. I think with this year being what it has been, It’d be great for listeners to take away some great energy and positivity from the track. Hopefully it’ll be the anthem that takes everyone out of 2020 and into a more exciting and successful year.
BM: An absolutely incredible collaboration; do you have any other features or collabs in the works at the moment for future or upcoming projects? And if not, are there any artists who you would particularly love to work with?
Franklin: Thank you! I do actually have quite a lot of REALLY exciting collabs in the works right now…Can’t say anymore though for now!
BM: How did you know that music right was the career path for you?
Franklin: It’s hard to explain how I knew it was the right thing for me…I guess I just always found myself gravitating towards music since I can remember. Though, I do remember the first time I went to a music festival at 16 with my friends was the time I knew I had to keep making music, just for my own pleasure and excitement and see what came of it…
BM: Where do you see yourself heading artistically over the next few years?
Franklin: Honestly, wherever the journey takes me! After a few years, I’d love to be able to look back and see a massive body of work where I can reflect on how much I learnt and developed as an artist and person. I don’t wanna approach it with tunnel vision and a plan that I must stick to…I’ve always said as long as I’m making music for a living in some capacity, I’m really already happy.
BM: Do you have any particular goals, or things you wish to achieve for 2021?
Franklin: Covid permitting, I’d love to start doing live-shows. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that gigs/festivals will return by the summer and hopefully we can go from there…
To keep up with Franklin, and his ever developing artistry and rising musical journey; find him on all his socials @soundoffranklin
Posted By Stevie Carter