Tell us about yourselves and what you do?
We’re a UK based five-piece band. The economics of keeping that number of people on the road isn't easy, but it gives us plenty of musical options and the ability to have lots of light and shade in our live show, plus it has the bonus of making a noise we all like.
The guys are multi-talented and often swop instruments, which is great visually but first and foremost it has to sound right. We swop vocals too, including harmonies, but we have the same set of rules; if one persons’ vocal is better suited to the song then they get to sing it. Anything else would be dumb. Luckily there are no egos to placate so everyone buys into the idea of doing what makes us sound the best.
We have multiple musical influences which inevitably filter into what we do. For instance, Mark and Rick are heavily into Delta Blues. On long van journeys they chunter on about people the rest of us have never heard of but those influences have turned Rick into a mean slide guitar player. Alongside his vocal, Mark plays great harmonica, squeezeboxes and mandolin. If you throw upright and electric bass, fiddle, cello, drums and percussion into the mix, that kind of describes our line-up. We take songs from around the world, include some we’ve written ourselves and give them our own flavour. We see no point in trying to copy the original, it has to sound like us.
How did you get together/start out?
It was Martys idea to get us together. He’d played in previous bands with everyone and had an idea of putting together an outfit that crossed over musically. We do a lot of work on the folk circuit because initially that's where Martys contacts were. Our first rehearsal was a bit odd with everyone introducing themselves and shaking hands but then it was down to the music and finding out about each other, what works, and where you can take it. One luxury we had was Marty knowing everyones personal and musical history and in our case he was confident about both. When you tour and spend time with people you get to know their strengths and weaknesses. We like to have fun, we enjoy a drink and a laugh together but you need to have your head in the right place when its show time because that's what it’s all about.
What is your current release/future release?
“Seconds Out”, which one reviewer referred to as our sophomore release. We had to look it up but he was right - it’s our second album - released 30th July 2016 at The Covent in Stroud. A superb venue, check it out
What is the best part of being in a band/singer/song writer?
Spending time with your mates both on and off stage. We get on really well despite being very different people. Everyone is eccentric in their own way but it works musically and personally.
What is your most significant moment yet?
Hard to say for sure, but I think our first tour of Holland was a turning point in some ways.
First night of the tour, the band were apprehensive. The promoters had taken a chance having never seen us live and we got a standing ovation which then happened at every subsequent gig. We’d followed some fairly big names in those venues and it told us we were on the right track at least.
What are your biggest musical influences?
All forms of Roots music from the USA. Marion’s a Liverpool lass so The Beatles have to be in there. John Hiatt, Steve Earl, Robbie Robertson and The Band, Richard Thompson, Union Station. There’s a long list of others
What venue/gig do you most want to play?
Cropredy Festival near Banbury
What is your best/favourite song you have written?
The next one
What is your favourite album of this year?
Cayamo Sessions At Sea, Buddy Miller and Friends. It sounded like they had a lot of fun making it.
What does the next six months have in store for you?
Some great gigs and the chance to catch up with old friends both here and in Europe, plus I’m guessing we’ll get stuck on the M6 going north.
Where do you see yourself in ten years?
Stuck on the M6 going north
What is the best thing about Americana-UK?
Americana seems to be the only new music I’m hearing. I’m not even sure what defines the genre which suggests it’s still evolving and that's exciting. There are some great up and coming artists in the UK and they’re forging their own UK sound. It’s a good time to be around