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Denis Coleman

3rd May 2022

Interview: Amy Bell

Editor in Chief: Owen James Vincent

At only 18, Denis already has many impressive feats on his timeline up until this point, including supporting the tours of The Vamps, HRVY, New Hope Club and Why Don’t We, as well as, headlining multiple venues across the UK. Coleman’s back catalogue stands as equally credit-worthy, having amassed over 7 million streams across DSP’s and built an organic cult following of dedicated fans who count towards the 100,000 followers across his social media platforms – all as an independent artist. 

Denis will be supporting international girl group Little Mix on their UK tour, starting next month. Kickstarting in Belfast on Saturday 9th April, Coleman will be performing to mass audiences at arenas across the UK and Ireland supporting the world’s biggest girl band.

We chatted to Denis about supporting one of the biggest girl groups, his single 'Healing The Process' and his new headline tour!

Firstly, congrats on supporting the hugely popular girl group Little Mix, can you tell us a bit about the events that led up to you being the opener for one of the biggest international girl groups?

Thank you so much!!! It still feels a bit surreal to be on tour with such an iconic group, I remember listening to them on the radio almost every day growing up and to now be on tour with them is truly unbelievable. It was a long process but also strangely sudden. My manager had an in with their team and was able to play them my music and explain my vision for the live show. After that we didn’t hear back for months until earlier this year when we got the call saying it was a go!

Were you always interested in music growing up?  Was there any kind of music that inspired you?

Growing up I listened to such a varied, multifaceted array of sounds it’s somewhat difficult to pinpoint which styles influenced me the most, from the golden age Hip Hop my mom loved to the classic rockstars my dad would always play. I think over time, all these different strands coalesced into the musician and songwriter I am today - that and an addiction-like dedication to listening to the newest wave of modern pop and alt-pop every Friday. I’m constantly inspired by contemporaries and historical greats alike, combining and refining each flavour to fit my own rock-influenced pop sound.

You have your new single out that came out in March, ‘Healing The Process’, can you tell us a bit about the release please?

The release was a very gradual process! I first teased the song on my Discord months before it was released where only my closest fans could hear, before putting the song on TikTok and then eventually sharing it to the world. The reaction from fans was as always overwhelming and generous and enthusiastic, and since the release they’ve shown their support for the track in hundreds of thousands of streams on Spotify. I was also amazed at the response the track received from Radio One! I’m a big fan of Jack Saunders’ show Future Artists and so to hear him not only play Healing the Process but also hear him speaking about how important the track was was a bizarre and incredible experience. 

Check out the video to 'Healing The Process' by Denis Coleman.

What was the inspiration behind the single?

The inspiration for Healing the Process was a general sense of unease that had been rising since Covid appeared and social media took over everything. As I started to be more critical, curious and introspective about the role of social media in my life, I came to a few concerning conclusions. Pretty quickly, it became clear that I was micro-dosing dopamine in a way which was very much counter-productive and leading to what was essentially a mini addiction to the validation I received from my phone. And there was no way to change that. Not only was it impractical to detox off social media, but I had very little desire or commitment to actually do it, despite the rational part of my brain being vaguely aware something was off. I tried to capture the frustration and uncertainty of being in this situation in Healing the Process, half as a call to action and half as an honest, nihilistic acceptance that these pitfalls are an unchangeable part of my identity - and that of the majority of my generation.

What was the creative process like behind writing ‘Healing The Process'?

Healing the Process was inspired by an idea I had written over lockdown. As soon as I heard the chords opening the record I knew it would be a perfect fit. Once the verse lyric was in the concept really took shape and from there the writing flowed naturally. I coproduced the track with Red Triangle, a duo I collaborate with quite frequently and after a single one day session, the song was already 90% complete. Sometimes a concept is so personal and relevant that the writing feels more like speaking - and that was certainly the case on Healing the Process.

What is one message in ‘Healing The Process’ that you want to get across to your listeners?

I hope that it can communicate that it’s normal not to have the answers. So many people are aware that social media and the internet are affecting them negatively but despite the plethora of advice available, finding a way to navigate these platforms in a balanced, healthy way is rarely straightforward.

You have your own headline tour coming up, kicking off on the 1st of August, what can we expect from your tour dates?

Yes!!! I’m so excited, it will be the best shows of my life to date! It will also be my first time performing with a full band, and I’m so excited to start arranging parts for all the incredible musicians who have joined the team. Prepare for some cinematic moments, tears, smiles and a relentless energy that will have you walking out of the event on an adrenaline high!

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