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Quick & Dirty: Andrew Neil Answers Some Random Interview Questions

Fresh off the release of ‘Resurrection’ lead singer Andrew Neil of Andrew Neil and Code Purple answers some fun and random questions.



Andrew Neil, photo courtesy of Andrew Neil
Andrew Neil, photo courtesy of Andrew Neil

Andrew Neil is the creative force behind the indie sensation Andrew Neil and Code Purple. Overcoming challenges, namely with mental illness and cancer, Andrew’s journey is a testament to the transformative power of music. Fresh off the release of singles like “Houston,” “Ride or Die,” and “Blue Moon,” the band has just released their album Resurrection to the delight of fans. Resurrection delves into profound themes of personal transformation, resilience, and renewal through love and support, even in the face of life’s most challenging times… something Andrew knows all about.

Boasting a compelling alternative rock sound and featuring introspective lyrics, the album showcases each band member as they uniquely bring their style to the music, creating a cohesive and authentic sound. Andrew’s emotive vocal delivery and Logan Wayne’s distinctive raspy backup vocals are highlighted by acoustic and electric guitar-driven tracks. Wayne’s exceptional drumming complements Rick Shaw’s driving and melodic bass lines perfectly, while guitarist Daniel Houser’s lead work reflects his heavy metal background, adding a unique edge.

While conveying themes of personal struggle, redemption, and hope, Resurrection offers rich material for discussions beyond its musical elements, addressing mental health, personal struggles, societal critique, and the influence of culture and nature on personal growth. We sat down with Andrew Neil to get to know him on a more personal level and get insight into what drives his creative mind.

What do you think is your greatest accomplishment?

Andrew Neil: “I truly think my greatest accomplishment was finding light at the end of the tunnel. The ‘tunnel’ I am referring to is my mental illness; which manifested itself slightly in high school but was further exasperated by the Traumatic Brain Injury I suffered during a 2009 car crash. Repeated concussions playing high school football also didn’t help things.

“This accomplishment, like almost any great accomplishment, couldn’t have happened without the help and love of others; namely my parents. I got treatment, and I am proud to say I have a balanced and peaceful mind.”

What will always be funny to you?

“Something that will always be funny to me is the inside jokes I have with my mom. She and I are very close. We like to quote lines from movies that we have seen together. It’s good fun. Also, when I was a boy, we went to the ocean in North Carolina. I left my sandals on the beach, and the waves came in and swept them out to sea. The seas were particularly rough that day, but that didn’t stop my dad from going in after them. He got knocked down. Wave after wave. Then a fist emerged from the water holding the sandals! It was kind of scary then, but when we look back now at it as a family, we all have a good laugh!”

What’s the best purchase you’ve ever made?

“The best purchase I have ever made was on a Gold’s Gym exercise bike that retailed for close to 400 dollars. I got it off of Facebook marketplace for 100 dollars. Not only was the price good, the benefits of exercising have really helped my creativity and songwriting. It was a great buy.”

Cover art for Andrew Neil & Code Purple ‘Resurrection’ album

Cover art for Andrew Neil and Code Purple ‘Resurrection’ album

When do you feel like the best version of yourself?

“I feel like the best version of myself when I get a lot accomplished throughout the day. I’m very goal-orientated and, to be honest, can be pretty hard on myself. I have had three near-death experiences: 1. Head-on crash collision 2. Tazed three times by the police during a manic episode and hogtied, and my kidneys almost failed. They also could have shot me. 3. And most recently, about four years ago, I battled Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma stage four. I have been close to death, so I realize that each day truly is a gift. I am the best version of myself when I appreciate this gift to the fullest.”

What are 3 words that describe you?

“Word #1: ‘Encourager.’ This is what my first name, Andrew, means in Hebrew, and I really can make people see the best in themselves.

“Word #2: ‘Appreciative.’ Being locked up in a small cell for 23 hours a day for an eight-month span makes you appreciate things… ice cubes, cell phones, guitars, going outside, the list goes on and on.

“Word #3: ‘Funny.’ I have an odd sense of humour and only show it to those that I trust. But I can make people laugh… I have always been able to do that, despite the seriousness with which I often approach life.”

You just won a game show and your prize is a dream vacation! Where are you headed?

“By myself, I would go to Japan. I really appreciate their culture. I was born on August 9th, the same day Nagasaki was atomic bombed. Perhaps I was there in a past life. Anyway, it would be cool to see the country.

“Though if I could take someone with me; that person would be my mom, and we would go to France. She was there once and would love to go back.”

What’s the best venue you have ever played and why?

“The best venue I have ever played at and still do is a little bar and restaurant called The Local. It’s an open mic held almost every Monday night in Charlottesville, Virginia, and the people are all really cool; kind of like a little family.”

What’s your secret to great metal hair?

“The secret to my great metal hair is that less is more. Cancer took my long hair, and it really never grew back right. At least I’m still kickin’.”

Dawn Jones is the curator of the V13 imPRESSED Column. Previously known as imPRESSED Indie Music Blog, Jones and her team joined forces with V13 in 2020 to collaborate on an exclusive column on V13's site (imPRESSED) to bring a niche focus to the rapidly evolving indie music genre. Dawn is also the founder of Pressed PR - a boutique PR agency that focuses on PR for independent creatives. Pressed PR’s team works on a variety of campaigns partnering with independent filmmakers, independent artists, and independent labels. Pressed PR’s music clientele has landed in the pages of Billboard, Atwood Magazine, EARMILK, HYPE Magazine, and many others.