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Quickfire Questions #53: Jamie Jay and Sam Robinson of Wild Swim

 
By on Friday, 4th October 2013 at 11:00 am
 

Jamie Jay (guitar / keyboards / programming / production) and Sam Robinson (drums / percussion) of Oxford band Wild Swim decided to tag team it when we asked them our TGTF Quickfire Questions. They recently appeared at London XOYO as support for Duologue, and Ben’s review of that night is forthcoming. But first, let’s take a trip down memory lane with the lads…

What song is your earliest musical memory?
Jamie: The earliest pop song would probably be David Bowie‘s ‘Life On Mars’.

What was your favourite song as a child?
Sam: Rolling Stones – ‘Sympathy For The Devil’.

What song makes you laugh?

Jamie and Sam: Kirin J. Callinan – ‘Embracism’ (it’s also very good though).

What song makes you cry?
Sam: Martin Simpson – ‘Brothers Under the Bridge’.

What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
Sam: Tom Waits – ‘Hang Down Your Head in Sorrow’.

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
Jamie: Rage Against The Machine – ‘Wind Below’.

Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
Jamie: Grizzly Bear – ‘I Live With You’.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
Sam: Gary Snyder (poet and essayist).

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
Jamie: Gutting fish.

If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)
Sam: Cut Hands – ‘Black Mamba’ (‘cos I can’t imagine they have much of that up there).

Cheers to Jamie and Sam for answering our questions and Jonathan and Aoife for sorting this out for us. Wild Swim’s next release is the single for ‘New Dawn’, out on the 21st of October; listen to the single here.

 

Quickfire Questions #52: The Orielles (formerly The Oreoh!s)

 
By on Monday, 30th September 2013 at 11:00 am
 

Update: as of 26/11/2013, they’re now called The Orielles.

Halifax band The Oreoh!s – made up of sisters Esme (lead vocals / bass) and Sid Hand-Halford (drums) and Henry Wade (guitar) – have been building up loads of practical yet impressive gig experience as of late, supporting Jez Kerr, the Lovely Eggs, Hey Sholay, and even TGTF favourites The Crookes.

Actually, next week on Thursday night (3 October) alongside the Hosts, they will be supporting the Sheffield band when they play at the University of Sheffield’s student union room the Foundry. Ahead of that performance and one the following night support Go-Kart Mozard in Preston, we asked the bright-eyed and bushy-tailed trio to answer our Quickfire Questions. They are certainly our youngest participants to the QQs and so the question about what their favourite song was as a child seems a little premature, but I think you will see as you read their answers that you can be of any age to love, appreciate and get inspired by music. Read on…

What song is your earliest musical memory?
Sid: I remember my mum and dad playing The Flaming Lips‘ ‘The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song’ in the car all the time, so it would have to be that!
Henry: It was ‘Pictures of Matchstick Men’ by Status Quo, and I remember it being the song that inspired me to play guitar.
Esme: ‘Grand Canyon’ by Grandaddy.

What was your favourite song as a child?
Sid: ‘Blood on Fire’ by Niney.
Henry: ‘Fluorescent Adolescent’ by Arctic Monkeys.
Esme: Boredom by The Buzzcocks.

What song makes you laugh?
Sid: ‘I’ve Been Tired’ by Pixies.
Henry: ‘Dirty Thing’ by Telekinesis.
Esme: ‘Moving Like Mike’ by Mac Demarco.

What song makes you cry?
Sid: ‘Disco 2000′ by Pulp has pretty touching lyrics.
Henry: ‘Dance in Colour’ – The Crookes.
Esme: ‘I’d Rather Go Blind’ – Etta James.

What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
Sid: I can’t think! I’ll mix it up a bit and say The Ronettes’ ‘Baby I Love You’ was the song that made me fall in love with Motown and the Phil Spector wall of sound era.
Henry: ‘Gangsters’ by The Specials and that made me fall in love with ska music.
Esme: ‘Girl You’ll be a Woman Soon’ – Urge Overkill. Pulp Fiction was the first Tarantino film I saw and the soundtracks are one of the things I fell in love with in his films.

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
Sid: I was listening to ‘U-Mass’ by Pixies when on the bus and an angry woman got on and ripped my earphones out and told me it was too loud. We had a massive argument and now every time I listen to it, it reminds me of her!
Henry: Anything in the UK top 40 or anything by Nikki Minaj.
Esme: Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ because I don’t like the song.

Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
Sid: I wish I’d written any song off Tame Impala’s Lonerism. They’re all ace.
Henry: ‘Dance In Colour’ by The Crookes.
Esme: ‘Wouldn’t It Be Nice’ – The Beach Boys.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
Sid: Any writer from the Beat Generation, so probably Jack Kerouac or Allen Ginsberg.
Henry: Morrissey.
Esme: Frank Black from Pixies.

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
Sid: I’d be at college still!
Henry: Still be at school.
Esme: Me too.

If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)
Sid: The Jesus and Mary Chain – ‘Darklands’. It’s just a fantastic album and everyone ought to know it.
Henry: The Cure – ‘Standing on a Beach’, because it’s a good, consistent album.
Esme: Mac Demarco – ‘2’, because it’s a happy album and I like all the songs on it.

The Oreohs’ upcoming gigs includr supporting the Crookes on Thursday (3 October) at the Foundry at University of Sheffield student union; supporting Go-Kart Mozart on Friday (4 October) at Preston Continental; and supporting Shinies on the 15th of November at Leeds Cockpit.

 

Quickfire Questions #51: Tom Hogg of the Hosts

 
By on Friday, 27th September 2013 at 12:00 pm
 

Recent Band to Watch and nattily dressed band of musical men The Hosts announced a couple of days ago that they would opening for fellow Sheffielders the Crookes, where they will be returning to Sheffield University’s Student Union on the 3rd of October, the site where it all began for the New Pop quartet. Ahead of their support slot, we asked Hosts’ frontman and ringleader Tom Hogg to humour us and answer the TGTF Quickfire Questions. His choice of alternative career isn’t much of a surprise. You’ll see, as away we go…

What song is your earliest musical memory?
‘Please Mr. Postman’ – The Beatles.

What was your favourite song as a child?
‘Peaches’ – The Stranglers.

What song makes you laugh?
‘The Lodger’ – Jake Thackray.

What song makes you cry?
‘Afraid to Sleep’ – Roy Orbison.

What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
‘Queen of the Highway’ – The Doors.

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
‘Some Velvet Morning’ – Lee Hazlewood &and Nancy Sinatra.

Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
‘God Only Knows’ – Beach Boys.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
Upton Sinclair.

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
Haberdasher (dependent on the hours).

God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)
‘At Folsom Prison’ – Johnny Cash.

Many thanks to Tom for answering our q&a. The Hosts’ latest single ‘Give Your Love to Her’ is out now on Fierce Panda. Catch the band open for the Crookes at Sheffield University Student Union’s Foundry next Thursday the 3rd of October.

 

Quickfire Questions #50: Owlle

 
By on Thursday, 1st August 2013 at 12:00 pm
 

Lovely Paris singer/songwriter Owlle recently stopped in London to play at Lovebox Festival and we thought it might be nice for her to answer the TGTF Quickfire Questions. If I recall, she’s the first non-Brit, non-American to answer them, though I have to say that her answers are so thoughtful, including the last one about what she would do if faced with the ultimate question at the Gate of Heaven. (Seriously, read on. BLESS.)

What song is your earliest musical memory?
Portishead – ‘Only You’.

What was your favourite song as a child?
“Every sha la la la” ‘Yesterday once more’ by the Carpenters, I was a big fan of them. Even if I didn’t understand any of the lyrics by then, guess I’d relate to them, the first verse says it all!

When I was young
I’d listen to the radio
waitin’ for my favorite songs
when they played I’d sing along
it made me smile

What song makes you laugh?
‘Aragon et Castille’ by Boby Lapointe. This French artist had a fantastic sense of humor. Vintage French humor!

What song makes you cry?
Antony and the Johnsons’ ‘Hope There’s Someone’. There is so much emotion in there…Antony’s an old soul.

What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
Sébastien Tellier – ‘La Ritournelle’.

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
Something energizing like Rihanna or Major Lazer!

Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
Adele – ‘Someone Like You’.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
David Bowie’s lyrics are just fabulous. It’s perfection to me, I would love to reach that kind of perfection one day myself!

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
Probably a videographer. I did study video at the Beaux Arts, I actually hope I’ll get to direct someday, for myself or others!

If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)
Oh god …for it’s impossible to make a choice, I’ll make a totally egocentric one here so I’d take my debut album with me! I’ll play it to God and everyone around, eventually I’ll get to play a few gigs in heaven too. You get the idea. And for I have a pretty good memory, I’ll play everything else that I love in my mind…or start a cover band…in heaven.

Many thanks to Owlle for answering our questions and Victoria for sorting this out for us.

 

Quickfire Questions #49: J. Willgoose, Esq. of Public Service Broadcasting

 
By on Wednesday, 31st July 2013 at 11:00 am
 

We’ve been very curious about unique London act Public Service Broadcasting. So we took a gamble and wanted to see if one of the duo would be willing to answer our Quickfire Questions. We were in luck: the banjo, guitar and synthesiser playing J. Willgoose, Esq., humoured us and gave us some very erudite and verbose answers, which was quite surprising given that neither he nor drummer and percussionist Wrigglesworth actually speak at any time at their shows. So we feel quite honoured that J. Willgoose, Esq. let us in on his some of his most innermost thoughts. Well, about music, anyway. And as for his favourite writer, sigh, he chose one of my favourites! Read on, folks, this one is quite entertaining…

What song is your earliest musical memory?
‘The Riddle’ by Nik Kershaw. I still get excited when I hear the snare roll coming in.

What was your favourite song as a child?
See above, probably, or I used to love Foreigner (it’s all coming out now), particularly ‘Tooth and Nail’. Honourable mention to The KLF too for ‘3 AM Eternal’ in the slightly later years.

What song makes you laugh?
Lots of songs! The end of ‘Sugar Kane’ by Sonic Youth, just that one thumping bass note, makes me laugh. Battles make me laugh as their songs are just so ridiculous, and ridiculously tight. Too many to mention though. Oh and of course almost everything by Nick Cave, the best lyricist in the world in my opinion.

What song makes you cry?
Again, too many to mention! At the moment the song I can’t hear without getting a bit misty–eyed is ‘Songbird’ by Fleetwood Mac. A beautiful, beautiful song.

What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
I’m not sure I remember a specific one to be honest. I’m quite a committed non-romantic. I do remember what I listened to when it all ended though, which was Spiritualized’s ‘Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space’… definitely the best (i.e., most misery-inducing) break-up album I own.

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
I don’t get angry very often – I tend to do the healthier thing and bottle it all up inside in a massive fret-knot. I find classical music very relaxing – currently working my way (very slowly) through Beethoven’s symphonies, although Tchaikovsky is probably my number one. Ever the populist.

Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
Maybe ‘Never Going Back Again’ by Fleetwood Mac. Either that or something like ‘Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head’. One of those songs which you know is still going to be being played in about 200 years, if not longer.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
George Orwell, particularly some of the essays. Any aspiring writer should be forced to read ‘Politics and the English Language’, especially inveterate show-offs in the making.

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
Working with sound in some capacity, probably. Or falling back on Geography teaching. I’ve got the outfit after all.

If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)
First of all, as a committed agnostic, I take exceptional umbrage to your assumptions that a) ‘God’ exists and b) I would get into ‘Heaven’ (never mind the question of what kind of Heaven only allows one CD – that doesn’t sound very heavenly to me). However, leaving aside my unnecessary prickliness, I think I’d have to go with a classical one for sheer depth and variety. You could listen to it a thousand times and still find something new, or a different nuance… I’ll go with Tchaikovsky’s 6th Symphony anyway, and you can send this in to Pseuds’ Corner at your leisure.

Massive thanks to J. Willgoose, Esq. for his answers and Jonathan for sorting this one out for us.

 

Quickfire Questions #48: Andy McCluskey of OMD

 
By on Thursday, 11th July 2013 at 12:00 pm
 

Something very exciting in the TGTF Quickfire Questions today. Electronic pioneers OMD start a new North American tour this very night in Toronto, and the DC contingent of TGTF are pretty stoked about them coming to Washington on Saturday night. (Especially me, as I got to see them with Martin on my holiday at Gateshead Sage in May.) Ahead of that, frontman and certainly one of my personal music heroes Andy McCluskey was kind enough to answer our Quickfire Questions and give us insight into the first single he ever bought, the euphoria that led to abject heartbreak in his first relationship and what his iPod reveals about him. (He even gave us a smiley face. Come on. Andy McCluskey of OMD gave TGTF a smiley face!) Read on…

What song is your earliest musical memory?
The theme tune to the TV show Andy Pandy from the watch with mother lunchtime series in teh UK when I was 3 years old.

What was your favourite song as a child?
Three Wheels on my Wagon by the New Christy Minstrels.

What song makes you laugh?
‘The Intro and the Outro’ by Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band. Very funny, very surreal and very silly!

What song makes you cry?
‘Without You’ by Nilsson. It was the first single that I ever bought and the song and his version remain the greatest sad song/performance/history combination of all time. This is possibly the single greatest record ever made…according to me! :-)

5. What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
Bobby Goldsboro, ‘Summer the First Time’ was in the charts when I had my first-ever girlfreend called Janis. It lasted 3 weeks. From euphoria to tortured pain in 21 days!

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
‘Without You’ by Tom Evans and Pete Ham of the band Badfinger. They both commited suicide allegedly due to the royalty situation regarding this song. It seems to be the ultimate expression of hopelessness due to music business sharp practices.

Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
‘Europe Endless’ by Kraftwerk. The simplest most perfect distillation of their concept and yet so melodic and romantic envoking visions of a Europe that I had yet to discover.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
Tied for first place: Bryan Ferry and David Bowie. They have written the greatest numbers of songs that have moved and inspired me, and that I continue to listen to.

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
Either an archaeologist or an artist. These two subjects are still my primary fascinations.

If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why?
There is no God nor Heaven but I will play the game. Leonard Cohen’s ‘Greatest Hits’. It the one album that I have listened to the most in the last 10 years. My iPod tells me so.

Thanks very much to Andy for answering the questions for us and thank you also to Sarah for organising this.

 
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We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like idiots.

The blog is edited by Mary Chang, who is based in Washington DC. She is joined by writers in the UK and America. It was started up by Phil Singer in Bristol, UK.

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