Daniel Tompkins is one busy man. Besides fronting for one of Britain’s biggest progressive metal acts in the world today, the TesseracT singer involves himself in as many projects as he could, from working on the comeback of his experimental side project White Moth Black Butterfly, introducing the world to his electronic act ZETA, and offering voice coaching lessons to aspiring singers. He makes it a point to truly surround himself with music, no matter the genre. He’s put in the work and made many sacrifices over the past decade to be where he is today, and it’s truly been worth it, making him one of the most respected vocalists in the world of music.
Daniel Tompkins shares the several places to visit in England on today’s edition of BillboardPH’s Soundtrips and Joyrides.
Where did you play your first local gig and is the venue still around today? Do you remember how it felt to be on stage for the first time?
This would have been a small back room at The Brown Cow public house in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire. The venue is still open today and host to regular live music/bands. I remember the gig being hot, sweaty and loud and it was the first time I had ever experienced a moshpit. At the time I was a guitarist and had never considered singing.
What local venues do you frequent (or used to) for a fresh dose of the local music scene? Do you still have time to check it out?
A lot of my friends and peers share the same predicament here, in that we write and tour so much and when we’re home, going to a show if often the last thing on our minds–especially those of us with family/children that take up most of our time. That being said, if a band I really like is playing Nottingham’s Rock City, then I may take a short train ride and catch the show.
Where did you see your first major concert? What band/artist did you watch?
I remember it very well. The first major concert I saw was A Perfect Circle at Rock City, performing Mer De Noms. One of the most impactful concerts I’ve ever attended.
Are there certain places in your city where you feel songwriting flows the best? What songs did you write in those spots?
I regularly take drives in the Peak District in Derbyshire, close to where I live. It’s an area of the UK I hold dear to my heart, having spent many memorable hours with family and friends over the years. I’ve written both TesseracT, Skyharbor and White Moth Black Butterfly albums whilst out in the rolling hills or Derbyshire.
Which songs will be in your ultimate roadtrip playlist?
I have to answer this in albums:
1. Enigma – Mcmxc A.D
2. A Perfect Circle – Mer De Noms
3 Dredg – El Cielo
Give 7 places—from gig venues/clubs/bars, famous landmarks, busking areas, and museums people should visit in your city. Why should they visit these places?
1. Hardwick Hall – Derbyshire
2. Chatsworth House – Derbyshire
3. Nottingham City Centre
4. Rock City – Music Venue, Nottingham
5. Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem 1189 A.D – Oldest Inn in England – Nottingham
6. Newstead Abbey – Home of Lord Byron – Nottinghamshire
7. Sherwood Forest – Home of Robin Hood and the Major Oak Tree – Nottinghamshire
These are all places that are very local to me. Hardwick and Chatsworth are both stunning Elizabethan country houses dating back to the 1500’s shadowed in some amazing history; definitely worth visiting.
Nottingham is full of beautiful places to visit, whether that’s socialising or soaking in some of its history. Nottingham is famous for its under city cave systems dating back to the Anglo Saxons. The Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem is an old inn that links to the caves themselves. Rock City is a music venue where I’ve frequented for years and seen some of my favourite artists.
Newstead Abbey and Sherwood Forest are places that everyone who live nearby has visited at some point. Sherwood Forest is a stunning place to visit and is home to one of the UK’s oldest oak trees, and also has historic associations with the legendary Robin Hood. Through childhood and parenthood we visit these places with family from time to time, and they hold some special memories.