Tim Van Doorn

Well, your current album is based on a coming of age-story and features many songs. How long have a been working on the record and was it still possible to meet people and go to work on a regular basis?

This project kept me busy for about two years! I think I wrote most of the songs in less than two months, but arranging them took a lot of time. Since it's an integral story, it was important to me that it would also sound like that, without it becoming repetitive. I'm a freelance musician (I do a lot of studio work for bands like THE ROAD HOME, GLASSES & MUSTACHES) so thankfully I had enough spare time: to do this project.

It seems you put a lot of time, money and effort into that record. Time goes by anyway but how did you finance the expensive package. Was there some crowd funding involved or how did things work?

There was! But nothing really fancy through sites like Kickstarter or anything. I felt like I was starting over as a musician with this record so I approached the "asking-people for-money" thing with a bit more dignity that I might've done with my old band. I just put up a video asking people to pre-order it. I think I got about a 1000,- out of it, which is a lot. I paid the rest with the inheritance I got from my late grandmother. It seemed like a good way to spend the money.

You also refer to going solo on your record. How did your CLUELESS bandmates react when a told them. Did you have a record deal and/or gigs scheduled?

At the time I wrote that CLUELESS was still together, but not really doing anything & that bugged the crap out of me. Singing about quitting the band was actually a joke (keep in mind that the record isn?t about me, wink wink! ;)), but in the end it also was a self fulfilling prophecy, because we decided to call it quits not soon after. We did a hometown farewell show where we presented our last EP. If you want to take a listen, it?s right here: https://soundcloud.com/cluelessweb/sets/out-with-a-bang

This Minor Side Effect deals a lot with being a musician from an intellectual point of view. Can you describe the different stages you went through before you became a real artist?

I still feel weird acknowledging that I am. I wrote music since I got my first small kiddie keyboard. I started singing in a band because no-one else wanted to. I think to some degree self confidence really helped me get to where I am as an artist, just knowing what I'm capable of... Somehow I found a way to make music pay for my coffee and bread. With this record I am aiming for the latte macchiatos & croissants!

The artwork is really amazing and I was wondering whether the artist (Jacek Selanski) has any exhibitions planned or is there a website one can visit?

Jacek is the best. He's on facebook and I advise everyone that needs illustrations or a kickass video to send him a message! He did this video for CLUELESS by the way:

CLUELESS - Just a little longer (on and on)

"The Guiltiest Pleasure" involves a number of characters, just like you'd have them in a drama. It's pretty intesting that you decided to leave the one-dimensional perspective that many songwriter have. How did you come up with that idea?

In CLUELESS I was already the singer/guitarist/songwriter. So the idea of writing a story came out of just wanting to do something different. I didn't want it to sound like an acoustic CLUELESS record. That was the biggest fear AND motivation. Plus that it's different from a normal singer/songwriter record. To be honest, I'm not a big fan of the genre. My favourite singer/songwriters are the ones that totally rock out like BEN FOLDS FIVE or EELS. I wanted to get close to that; not the sad, heartbroken ladiesman singing songs by candlelight.

You were a "Grote Prijs finalist" 2012 and I was wondering what kind of competition that was. Who organizes the whole affair and how did you get in touch with them? What were the experiences made?

It is the Netherland's longest running live competition and it's pretty well respected. I'm not a fan of music competitions, but I got to play in Paradiso Amsterdam. You can't really complain if someone offers you that, haha! There were no real strings attached to winning, like the TV shows nowadays, so that was another plus for me. For me it was about playing more shows and I got some media attention out of it. That's always nice when you plan on releasing a record soon.

Wasn't it irratating to have so much public attention? And by the way? did you win the competition? How do you deal with all the publicity and the fact that your lyrics are fictional but seem quite personal at the same time?

I didn't win. I got through to the finals and then I lost to Rogier Pelgrim. Not a bad guy to lose from. The attention was good, because like I said, it's necessary if you want to release a record that you want to do well. And I like attention, I'm an only child, haha! I don't think a lot of people heard the personal stuff in the lyrics yet, because it won't come out until Sunday. It is definitely nerve-wracking to think about that! The lyrics were always important to me, but I think this time people will actually listen to them. It's weird, because on the last CLUELESS Ep I wrote some of my favourite lyrics that are explicitly about me and no-one seemed to care. I don't mind, no bitterness here, but it's funny how that works!

Did you have to get a certain know-how of the industry before you made the record? In Germany there's special health insurance for artists and you have to make sure to register your tracks at GEMA. It's plenty of paper work. Is it easier in the Netherlands, maybe?

I studied music and the business side in particular in school, so I know (a little bit) what I'm doing. However it's difficult. We have BUMA here, I believe it's similar to GEMA. They don't have a very good name in the industry, most definitely on the consumer side, because they're trying to get money from everywhere. I think that if a 16 year old kid wants to put a youtube video on his blog somewhere, that stuff shouldn't cost him money. BUMA thinks it should. Small example, but you get the point I guess...

Your album sounds more like a band- than a singer/songwriter-record? who played the drums, the horn and all the other instruments involved? Female vocals and a cello are also featured on the album.

Ha! At times I felt more like an orchestral conductor than a musician because I have never worked with so many people in my career on just one record. The drums were played by Florian Speth, the horn by Luuk Hof, the organ by Joel Agterbosch, many guitarist friends, loads of other cool people and a special performance on Climbing The Ranks by Ken Stringfellow. That guy is my childhood hero... very surreal that he's playing on MY record!

What are your five favourite albums that had an effect on your music?

Ok, awesome question! In no particular order and this list will be different again tomorrow: 1. Get A Grip - Aerosmith 2. Nimrod - Green Day 3. Use Your Illusion II - Guns 'n Roses 4. Something To Write Home About - The Get Up Kids 5. Beautiful Freak - Eels

Where and when can people catch you live? Mostly in The Netherlands, but I plan on touring Germany early next year. Here's the tourschedule for my ?Shows before Hoes Tour 2013? ?

6 september - local FM - Ettenleur
9 september - Nix bluesclub / Enschede with ARTHUR ADAM
14 september - Uitmarkt - Enschede
14 september - De Buren - Zuthem
15 september - Feelgood market - Eindhoven
19 september - Radio Mortale Amsterdam release show
20 september - Eric's Bar Goes
21 september - Drukkerij Middelburg
22 september - Vlissingen
28 september - Popronde preview - Deventer
28 september - FJ fooenjoy - Deventer
11 oktober - Wilmink Theater POPSECRET - Enschede
17 oktober - popronde utrecht preview!
17 oktober - popronde Derat ? utrecht
9 november - popronde Rotterdam preview
9 november - Barclay Rotterdam POPRONDE SOLO
14 november - Crossing Border - Enschede
If anybody wants a (digital) copy of my record; this Sunday, Sept 1st, it'll come out on Itunes & spotify and you can order the physical thing directly from me by just mailing me @ Tim@timvandoorn.nl

Thanks a bunch for doing this. Cheers, Thomas.