JW Francis Photograph
The sounds that inform his new album...

New York based alt-pop extrovert JW Francis makes music with real colour and imagination.

A songwriter who seems to exist on his own terms, his unique, vivid manner of working results in some startling pop elements.

New album 'WANDERKID' is out now, and it's word of mouth acclaim will be followed by a quickfire trip to the UK.

As he puts it, "'WANDERKID' is an album about escape. It’s supposed to be a gut punch of a record about an anti-hero named 'WANDERKID' who wants to get OUT: out of his living situation, out of his head, out of his life."

"This album is like looking out the car window with an urgent desire to be on the other side. It was finished during the most recent global pandemic, so hopefully folks find it relatable.” 

Suitably intrigued, Clash tracked down JW Francis to discuss his Influences...

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ESG - 'Dance'

This is has been a go-to track in my life for years. Like a lot of ESG songs, it’s immediately electrifying and so freaking simple. ESG is a legendary band comprising 3 sisters from the South Bronx. I got to go see them a couple years ago, they’re in their 60s now but it was one of the funnest shows of my life. Very inspiring. Whenever I felt funny about a part on my upcoming album I would scrap it and try to make it as simple as possible in the vein of EAG.

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Laraaji - 'I Can Only Bliss Out For Days'

Laraaji brings me peace. There’s no better way to say it. He’s one of the OG bedroom producers. I’m pretty sure this was recorded at his apartment in Park Slope.

While I was recording 'WANDERKID' with my friend/producer Sahil I listened to a lot of Laraaji on my walk home.

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Simon and Garfunkel - 'Bleeker Street'

Great song that I’m very influenced by, but I really only included it here because it has that line “30 dollars pays your rent on Bleeker Street” and that cracks me up every time.

Garfunkel and I went to the same Uni (not at the same time or else I’d look quite good for my age), but apparently he’s not a very nice person. I’m not trying to start beef with Art Garfunkel, these are just the things I hear.

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youbet - 'My Side'

youbet is my favorite contemporary NYC artist. Theirs was actually the last show I saw before COVID and the first show I’ve seen since shows opened back up so it was a very nice bookend.

'Compare & Despair', the album that this song is on, was my favourite album of 2020. I can’t say enough good things about this band. The sound of the record is something Sahil and I took a lot of inspiration from.

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Katie Von Schleicher - 'Wheel'

The producer of my favorite record of 2020 is also one of my favourite NYC artists: Katie Von Schleicher.

This song is a certified jam. She’s also a good friend of the guy who engineered the drums on WANDERKID, Nate Mendelsohn. She’s someone I would really love to work with I look up to her big time.

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'Wanderkid' is out now. Catch JW Francis at London's Moth Club on October 27th.

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