Phil Lang

Phil Lang

San Francisco singer-songwriter

“I’d describe my sound as depressing folk music,” Phil Lang muses. “I've learned to accept it. I really, really wish I was inclined to write happy songs like 'The Swimming Song,' because I'm generally a very happy person. I don't know why I consistently write sad music, but I do.”

Phil’s favourite karaoke song might not be folk music, but you could argue it’s certainly a depressing slice of angst – the Lionel Richie classic "Hello." “It's become pretty commonplace lately, but I destroy 'Hello' by Lionel Ritchie,” he explains, “the key is to act out the parts from the music video.” Whether this will ever see the light of day as a video remains to be seen, and is probably dependent on whether we can afford the bar tab necessary to make it seem like a good idea.

On a serious note, what exactly does inspire Phil’s love of melancholic folk? “Cliché as it is, my parents are my heroes,” he says. “Musically speaking, I've always been a Dylan guy, and I always will be. Others would be Paul Simon and Loudon Wainwright III.”

Well … there’s also the Dave Matthews Band, of course. And if you’d like to hear Phil himself tell a hilarious story about his teenage rendition of "Crash Into Me," buy him a beer and you’re in luck.