Hiya mate thanks for joining us in the virtual RGM lounge today, grab a brew and take a seat.
What made you decide to become an artist?
When I was at school, a lot of my friends were in bands. I couldn’t play an instrument at that point, but I loved the energy of live gigs and how they brought people together. There was an influx of bands on the scene too. There were so many coming through that at times we’d be watching bands such as Super Grass, Embrace Shed Seven, Kula Shaker almost every night of the week at times. That naturally made me want to learn an instrument.
How positive are you feeling now we are in 2021?
I’m feeling great about getting new music out. It’s a huge relief to be releasing something amidst everything that’s going on at the moment. It’s a body of work that we’ve been sitting on for a couple of years now that we had to push back due to the pandemic. The hope of returning to live shows is also something to be optimistic about. I’m sure I’m not the only one to be missing playing live.
How has 2020 effected your mental health?
At the beginning of the pandemic, I hit a bit of a slump. I was ill, we had tours cancelled, releases pushed back, recording time cancelled, drummers leaving, loss of work; the list goes on. In hindsight it’s nothing compared to what others have experienced over the last year, so I have a lot to be thankful. Since then, I’ve done everything I can to help my mental health. I’ve used the time to be productive; writing, running; drawing; running, raising money for charities. I’m feeling pretty good right now.
What advice would you give other artists starting out?
Have fun with it and support other musicians. Don’t expect other people to keep coming to your shows if you aren’t taking the time to show your support. It’s a good way to develop your craft though too. Planning ahead is also something I’d recommend. It’s always good to have new music and content ready to keep the momentum going. There’s nothing worse than building momentum then losing it because you haven’t got any content to follow a release up with.
What’s one question you’re sick of being asked when interviewed?
What do you sound like? Mainly because I struggle to answer it.
What’s your favourite song right now from another band currently on the circuit?
Oh man. That’s a hard one. How am i supposed to choose one? The Midlands music scene is bursting with great artists of all genres let alone the rest of the circuit. I’m really enjoying Death By Stampede and Hunger Moons offerings.
What support is out there for new artists in Dudley?
There’s not a great deal going on musically in Dudley if I’m honest. MAS records is a great opportunity for bands starting out that provides free rehearsal and recording time. A lot of the bands gravitate towards Birmingham as that’s where there are more creative outlets. Dudley usually gets overlooked despite there being a wealth of talent in the area and a rich musical history.
What useless talent do you have/ party trick?
I can turn a tea towel into a chicken.
What was the most fun you have had on stage?
We played Y Not festival a couple of years ago on the Quarry Stage. It was a Sunday lunch time, and the weather was hideous. People were leaving the festival in their droves. I thought it was going to be a disaster but the gig that followed was one that will stay with me forever. The tent was heaving and really into the set. I jumped into the crowd during the last song and told everybody to get down and to my surprise a thousand odd people got down. When the song kicked back in everybody jumped up and it went off. Such a good feeling that one.
What was the worst experience on stage?
I think my worst experience on stage was in Russia. I think the whole band will agree. We played a venue that was restaurant by day and a venue by night. We were under the assumption that our stage time would be 10pm/11pm. The promoters ordered taxis for us to get to the venue where they provided our lunch (about 7pm) before we played. We thought we’d have a few beers with our meals but in Russia (or at least this venue) they were intent on giving you a shot of vodka with every beer that you had. Now this is all well and good until it approaches 10, then 11 and nobody’s mentioned anything about stage time. We finally got on stage at about 2am and were blind drunk. I think it sounded like some kind of experimental Jazz gone wrong. It wasn’t one of our finest performances to say the least.
Tell us something about you that you think people would be surprised about?
My eyesight is terrible. I’ve worn glasses since I was 18 months old. I looked like the love child of Dierdre Barlow and Curly Watts until I was about 16. Charlotte Church also taught me some Welsh when I was on holiday the once. By day I’m a Teacher #amazingfacts
Best drink to have on stage?
Jack Daniels and coke is my drink of choice on stage or Jack Daniels neat.
Always got to have a bottle of water to hand too.
Who is the biggest named band you have played with?
Ian Brown has to be the biggest artist I’ve supported. I supported him with my old band at the Paradiso in Amsterdam. That was definitely a huge one off the bucket list for us anyway. I watched him so many times; he was an icon and still is to many. I never thought we’d get the chance to support him. Was a hell of a weekend that!
Tell us a funny story from backstage?
A lot of the stuff that has been funny backstage will probably only be funny to us to be honest. A ‘You had to be there’ sort of thing. When we played Russia our bass player gave the keys to his bass case to the guitarist to look after, who in turn left the keys at the apartment. To our surprise, a Russian at the venue just so happened to have an axe on him; he proceeded to hack the case open. Funny for us but I’m not sure how amusing it was for the bass player.
Who would you like to work with on the circuit right now?
I’m really enjoying Arlo Parks at the moment. It would be great to do something with her. There are so many great acts coming out of the Midlands at the moment that I’d love to do something with. Hunger Moon, Fitzroy Holt, Sleepy Heads and Stress Release are just a few I think would work well. If any bands/artists out there fancy doing something, let me know.
What makes you stand out as a soloist?
I believe I’ve got my own sound that crosses genres. People struggle to put their finger on the style of music I make. Some say it’s Indie; others say Folk and others: everything in between. I think my favourite description is ‘alternative, cinematic symphonies.’ I also put a lot of work into my live shows to make them something for the audience to remember.
Right now, what’s pissing you off the most? (Cant say the virus 🙂
I dunno man. There’s always stuff that pisses me off but then I always remind myself that a lot of it is pretty trivial and that people have been dealt much worse cards. I think the pressure of social media gets to me. If it wasn’t for using it to promote my music, I’m not sure if I’d use it. It can be great but, in many ways, toxic.
I’m hating not being able to play live shows too and see friends. Again though, this is nothing compared to some people’s problems so I can’t complain.
Whats your favourite song to play live and why?
I’m really enjoying playing Going Nowhere Fast. The response to that song live has been phenomenal. I remember the first time we played it; nobody knew it but instantly people started clapping their hands and joining in with the chorus. Each time we’ve played it the response has just got better and better.
I hear you have a new single brewing, what can you tell us about it?
Yes, we have a new EP coming out called The Lost Persons Meeting Point. We can’t wait to get it out. It’s the first studio EP that I’ve done with the band and we’re releasing it on a limited edition, coloured, eco friendly vinyl. It’s a 5 track EP that we recorded between pirate Studios in London and RML Studios in Wolves.
I’d had the title of the EP swimming round my head for a while. I wanted the body of songs to match the title and feel that the time that we’re currently going through also fits the title suitably.
Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?
Peace and love my friend. Peace and love. Pass it on.