Great songwriters typically credit their talent to two things: persistence and obsession. Tom Odell, like his heroes, is no platinum-selling singer/songwriter without both qualities.
The more you write, the better ideas come out; it's just a law of averages. For someone like Odell who is in awe of his craft and those who practice it, spending hours plucking away at a piano and stringing words together is a day at the office. When something good falls out of his hands, he says it's an obligation.
Now, three albums in, Odell tells Q104.3 New York's Out of the Box with Jonathan Clarke that he's modified his approach, taking more time with his good ideas, looking perhaps for another "Another Love."
"I do increasingly take more and more time to hone them," Odell says. "'Cause I realize, each song is like an opportunity, particularly with the good ones; you don't want to waste it, so you want to get the lyrics right. I try to not leave any stone unturned."
Odell is as much a student of his craft today as he was before his first record deal. The difference is that with his success has come opportunities to befriend some of his biggest inspirations: Elton John, Neil Young and Billy Joel.
John and Joel are both generous people, who care deeply about music. Odell says they're as inspiring as individuals as they are as artists, and being able to bounce an idea off of a Rock and Roll Hall of Famer once in a while is only to his benefit.
"I've been very lucky to support some of the great songwriters and meet some of the great songwriters," Odell adds. "I'm fascinated by songwriting."
While he's topped the charts in the U.K. and Europe, Odell suggests America is his next frontier. But he's not taking anything for granted.
"If we do a show, like tomorrow night when we do Irving Plaza, and there's 1,100 people in there, and I'm in New York City — you arrive in New York City and see these amazing skyscrapers and 1,100 people want to see me playing my music? That blows my mind," he explains. "This is just incredible."
Check out the full interview in the video player above, including Odell's in-studio performances of "If You Wanna Love Somebody" and "Another Love."
Here's the official music video for "If You Want To Love Somebody":