Tag Archive: new music


rebel queens

We spoke to Tiffany Beamer, lead singer of all-female American rock band, Rebel Queens.


How did Rebel Queens form?

I have always wanted to be in a band, but wasn’t confident enough. I thought if you were a female singer, you had to sing pretty. I had always liked Joan Jett and had started getting into The Runaways. I was totally inspired by the music and performing style and the vintage-glam fashion that came along with it. I decided I was going to start an all-female rock band and perform some of the Joan Jett and The Runaways music so I put and ad online in November 2010. It was tough finding local women rockers, but I got a couple of responses right away. I did not find the full band until March 2011. It was the first band for all of us so we were eager to get playing. We had our first practice in March, our first performance in April, and have been going ever since.

What city/state are you based in, and what’s the music scene like there?

We are based out of Minneapolis, Minnesota. Minneapolis has a big melting pot of different styles of music. There is hip hop, hardcore, indie, rock, punk, rockabilly and everything in between, and plenty of live music venues to support it. There are also several all-female bands from this city that we have come to know. One of the classics being Babes in Toyland, formed in the late 80s.

What’s it like being in an all-girl rock band?

Mostly fun and empowering, with a ton of hard work involved. There is a lot of criticism from both music industry people and the crowds we play for, There’s always extra pressure being female, you have to work extra hard to prove yourself. I really enjoy playing with all women. There’s just something special about it.

RQ Tiffany

What’s been the best gig you’ve played so far?

One cool gig that stands out in my mind is a Women Who Rock charity event at Guitar Center we played last year. The charity is She Rock She Rock who works to empower young girls and women through music. We had our first performance at their open jam and they will always be close to our hearts. There were some awesome local female bands who played along with us: Mayda, Sick of Sarah, Angry Bukowski. They had speakers between bands and gave out some great swag bags.

You guys are influenced by The Runaways, do any of you have similar personality traits/styles to members of the band?

For myself, I’d say my singing/performing style and personal style is a mix of Cherie Currie and Joan Jett, but my personality is more like Joan. She was the one who felt the band was her baby and stuck it out despite the hardships and changes in line-up. She is creative, driven and hard working. Our drummer is pretty similar to Sandy West, as she is sweet and easy-going, but fiercely talented. She also has a great voice. Everyone that’s been in the band has been very different from the other, which I think is good and keeps it interesting.

Would you say it’s harder for rock ‘n’ roll bands nowadays to break through the mold?

I think these days a lot of musicians want to conform to playing the type of music that is popular and are afraid to go out of that box. Especially for cover/bar bands. They are all playing the same songs as everyone else. We have had pressure to conform, but stuck to our guns and have no desire to change our style. That is something I am most proud of with this band. We also tend to shock people who see us loading in our gear and expect us to play current hits or music by only female musicians. We have a pretty balanced set list of both male and female artists, but it’s all rock ‘n’ roll!

What’s planned for Rebel Queens in the next few months?

We took some time off to train in new guitarists who are ready to hit the ground running at our upcoming summer shows. Expect new songs and a fresh dynamic with our new players, along with some original music. We hope to keep growing our audience and growing musically and see where it takes us.

Do you have any advice for people who want to start their own band?

Educate yourself on all aspects of the music business. Marketing, branding, booking, management, book keeping, social networking – just a few examples of things you need to know when running a band. Also, checking your personal feelings at the door is an important thing to remember in a band situation. Remember that everyone is thinking about the best interest of the band. If your playing is off and someone points it out, it’s not a personal attack, it’s to help make everyone sound the best they can. That is a hard thing to remember but it definitely comes in handy.

When’s your next gig?

Our next gig is 14 June at ‘Freedom Rider’s Rally’ which is a motorcycle rally in Mountain Lake, MN. We have a substitute bass player for that gig as our new bass player had another commitment when she joined the band. The first gig with our full line-up is 27 June at Palmer’s in Minneapolis, MN. Palmer’s was actually just on Esquire’s list of ‘Best Bars in America’ and we will be playing there monthly starting in June.

Are there any plans to come to the UK?

I would love to do a UK tour if someone would get one set up for us! I like to travel, but have never been out of the USA; #RQtoUK

 

 

You can listen to the show every Thursday

You can listen to the show every Thursday

We speak to Tommy Clark of radio show The Third Class Ticket, and ask his opinion on all things to do with unsigned music.

Can you tell us a bit about The Third Class Ticket?
The Third Class Ticket show is a weekly Internet based radio show on MESi Radio.  It is solely for the promotion of new and unsigned bands that probably don’t get much airplay anywhere else.  It came about as most music projects do as a hobby in my bedroom.  I messed around with mixtapes and wee half hour ‘radio shows’ then posting them to my facebook page.  The guys at MESi heard them and asked me on board when the station kicked off last year.  At the time the show was mostly a mod type show but as more unsigned bands sent through their stuff to me the ‘Ticket’ show was re-born.  Now each week the show plays in excess of 30 songs.

How would an artist go about submitting their music for your show?
Bands interested in joining the Ticket family can send their tracks to me at thirdclassticket@hotmail.co.uk.  Mp3 or WAV files are preferable.  Also they can reach me at www.facebook.com/thethirdclassticket or at www.mesiradio.com

Do you have any hot tips for us to check out?
Now isn’t that the million dollar question.  So far on the show I have been lucky enough to play some of the best music going on.  Bands I would suggest to go in the Glasgow area alone are Rank Berry, Soldier On, The Begbies, The Coffins, Cabey, Sonic Templars, Jim Dead, Craig Hughes, The Apparells, Stonehouse Violets, Enemies of the State, The Revolt, The Beat Movement, Button Up or any of the singer/songwriters on the ACRE records label.  From further afield listen out for The Found, The Panoramic, Electric Stars, French Boutik, The Arrivals, Echo Raptors, Pretty Cartel, The 45s, The Universal and The Lemontops (who are coming soon to Kilmarnock – don’t miss them). Apologies to the hundreds of other great bands who have featured on the show but I cant list you all.  All in all tune into the show because every week you could hear your new favourite band.

Unsigned artists played on the show

Unsigned artists played on the show

What do you think makes a radio show like The Third Class Ticket so important for unsigned music?
The Third Class Ticket show is sometimes the first time that some bands are heard on radio so it can be the spur to push harder.  I have found that as word spreads about  the show  more bands who are friends of bands played or have been on the same bill are contacting the show.  I look upon the show and the wider ‘ticket’ family as a community who spreads the word of what’s bubbling under what’s bubbling under the surface.  Also it gives bands in Ayrshire hear what’s going on in Newcastle or Portsmouth or Las Vegas.  They can get new ideas, new contacts and even more importantly opportunities to get opportunities to play with like minded bands from across the country.  The motto of the show is ‘WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER’ and if we all work together we become stronger.

What’s your opinion of the music scene as it is today?
The music scene is vibrant right now it’s just the audiences that need to get better.  And to be fair bands need to get a bit better too.  If you are first on the bill at a gig night stick around and support the other bands.  It could be you playing to the small crowds next. Rant Over.  Musically though there is a wealth of talent and innovation out there.  X Factor hasn’t ruined music it’s just made bands work harder which I don’t think is too bad a thing.  Please support live music because if we don’t it wont be there when we want it.

 You can listen to The Third Class Ticket show every Thursday on MESi Radio from 9pm.

Interview: Chris Croken

Interview with singer-songwriter Chris Croken ahead of his gig at 13th Note in Glasgow this Thursday.

Chris will be performing this Thursday evening.

Chris will be performing this Thursday evening.

Can you tell us a bit about your upcoming gig at 13th Note?
I thought I’d get a few friends together, play some new songs, some covers and more or less have a good time with good music.

You have a demo up on SoundCloud, which includes the amazing track Slow, what’s the story behind this song?
I don’t really know. The passing of time, and enjoying the finer things and dragging through the rougher ones. I’ll let whoever listens to it decide.

Do you have anything planned for the rest of the year? New music? Any gigs?
I have lot of ideas, I am in the middle of gathering material for an album, I also want to have a band again. This will more than likely be my first and last gig of the year asides from open mic’s.

Who inspired you to get into music?
I honestly don’t know, I think it was my dad with U2, ELO and the like. Then I guess I found my own way; Clapton, Mayer and the into the classics of American music.

If you could perform at any venue in the world, which one would it be and why?
Red Rocks amphitheatre it’s outdoor and it just looks amazing, especially at night.

Chris will be performing at 13th Note this Thursday alongside Darren Hendrie and Amy Lyon. Gig starts at 8pm – tickets are £3 (available at the door) and it’s an over-18s event; get along to it if you can!

You can also check out his music on SoundCloud here.

Interview: Elvira Stitt

We talk to singer-songwriter Elvira Stitt, on the eve of the launch of her first solo EP, The Transparent Man.

Can you tell us a bit about how you came to choose the stage name Elvira Stitt?
I got the name from a psychological thriller film from the early sixties named Whatever Happened To Baby Jane?. Funny thing is Elvira Stitt is actually the maid who gets killed by getting hit over the head. I feel I can relate to the film in a lot ways. It’s fairly personal. I was hoping to use the name Baby Jane however it was already the name of a band.

Your new EP The Transparent Man is being launched tomorrow night, how does it feel getting an EP out?
Last year I brought out an E.P with the band Evora. I wrote the music and had great fun releasing it. However, I’m really excited about the release of my solo E.P because I feel more comfortable being on stage myself. It’s a really good feeling releasing an E.P and I’m hoping to get this one on Itunes, Spotify etc.

What was the recording process like?
It was quite a stressful experience when I had to book in recording slots for Cumbernauld College as many people wanted them for graded purposes. This is where I recorded a track off the E.P named Woodland Pillow. This meant that I could use it for personal music ideas as well as for my graded unit folio in college. I also recorded with my friend Dennis at his grandmothers house which was great fun. He’s a very talented sound engineer and piano player and it was great that I could finally get the idea’s I had in my head fully recorded to a track.

Elvira will be performing at her EP launch in 13th Note tomorrow night.

Elvira will be performing at her EP launch in 13th Note tomorrow night.

You’ve also released your first single from the EP, the brilliant Headstrong (Under the Weather) – what was the inspiration behind this song?
Thank you so much, I really appreciate that – To be honest, Headstrong was one of the first tracks I have wrote in a while that was done really quickly.. I wrote that song in ten minutes! The recording of it was made to sound like an old vinyl record. The song is for anyone who has been in a situation with someone who is tearing them down and who doesn’t appreciate them as a person but goes back to them. It’s about putting your everything into something and getting nothing in return. The chorus is basically saying that at times in the situation you may feel positive but you’re ignoring the fact you’re “under the weather” and that you would “pay your ways” to be unappreciated by them because that’s all there is to be offered.

In a zombie apocalypse, what would be your weapon of choice?
It would have to be my guitar. I could whap the zombie over the head with the guitar body then quickly write a song on it. Fast thinking!

Elvira will be launching her new EP at 13th Note in Glasgow tomorrow night (29th April) with support from Ryan Morcombe and Neil James Parkinson. Tickets are £5 and the doors open at 8pm. Be sure to go along and check her out!
Image

Creations Collide at Ivory Blacks

Creations Collide
Female-fronted band Creations Collide formed in July last year. Despite being relatively new to the scene, their infectious brand of pop-rock has seen them gain a big following over the last few months.

Reminiscent of Paramore with a hint of Evanescence, Creations Collide have definitely proved they have the ability of writing a catchy song, as heard on Losing My Head. The drums and melody at the start attract your attention straight away. Lead singer Nicole Stewart’s amazing vocals soar over the music, slightly softer than the heavier sound behind her, but both compliment each other well.

The band’s standout song, Questions, is a song Paramore wish they had written. There’s more of a rockier edge to Nicole’s vocals, which suits the up-tempo tune. Fantastic guitar guides you through the song alongside the vocals, with a chorus that will be stuck in your head for a few hours, which is no bad thing.

Having played in the Hard Rock Cafe in Edinburgh this year and supported Derby band Follow You Home in December, Creations Collide give the impression of a band that have been around for years rather than just a few months. With their great music, and an ever expanding following of fans, they are definitely one to watch, and I look forward to seeing what the future has in store for them.

Check out their 2 track demo, Progress, here.

What’s On

O2 ABC

O2 ABC

Some gigs that are happening in Glasgow in the coming weeks.

Thursday 4th April: Fiesta Minor – Bar Bloc 

Saturday 6th April: The LaFontaines – Classic Grand If there are any tickets left, definitely go and see these guys. They’re going to be massive.

Friday 12th April: Homeward James and Isotones – Walkabout 2 brilliant bands, sure to be a great night! Worth mentioning that tickets are only £3 if you’re a student.

Saturday 13th April: Delta Mainline – Glasgow School of Art

Friday 19th April: The Fratellis – Barrowlands My boys, as I affectionately call them, are playing at one of Scotland’s best venues; it’s going to be good.

Friday 26th April: Danny P – Oran Mor EP launch of a fantastic  artist, be sure to check him out.

Monday 29th April: Elvira Stitt – 13th Note get yourself along to this if you can, she’s a wonderful singer, and is launching her EP The Transparent Man

Saturday 4th May: The Strypes – King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut A band that are rocketing to success at an alarming late. Check them out before the tickets cost too much.

homeward james

Race horses and a mental hospital; Craig McDonagh of the brilliant Homeward James gives us an interview.

How did you guys come up with the name Homeward James?
I’ve been told that it was the names of two random race horses mixed together, Homeward Jeeves and King James or something to that effect.

You played on the mainstage of Lanarkshire festival B in Beltane last year, how was it?
It was the best experience we’ve had as a band, managed to pull a great crowd and it was crackin’ to see people actually singing along.

What can we expect to see from Homeward James this year?
Bigger better gigs! Videos, new, very different songs!

Heartwood was the first release from your self-tiitled EP, what was the inspiration for this song?
It’s a kind of play on words about the old Hartwood mental hospital, we’ll let people interpret it themselves.

Last but not least, if you were a superhero, what would your super powers be?
Jim once said he has the superpower of not being a paedophile… Which is entirely true.

If you fancy catching Homeward James live, they will be playing at Walkabout in Glasgow on Friday 12th April. Check out their self-titled EP, Homeward James here.

Time Spent Breathing

Fiesta Minor’s EP, Time Spent Breathing, is due out in Spring 2013

With the release of their new EP due very soon, I interviewed Ewan McAleer, singer and bassist of  Glasgow band Fiesta Minor.

If you could describe Fiesta Minor’s music in one word. what would that one word be?
Miserable.

Your new EP’s called Time Spent Breathing, can you tell us a bit about it?
It’s a completely different (and better) record than our last one. It’s far more intense and a lot louder and heavy than anything we’ve done before. We’re all really proud of it and can’t wait to get it out.

What’s been the best gig you’ve played so far?
Probably our record release show last year. That show was nuts. Our friend Dan put it on for us and packed the venue out, people were crowd surfing, stage diving and singing along. It was the first time that had happened for us and we were really taken aback by it. That gig was humbling as much as it was fun.

Who is your biggest musical influence?
That’s a really hard question, we all have varied tastes. I think we’d be here all year if we were trying to decide on our biggest influence.

And finally, Iron Man or Captain America?
Iron man. Obviously. No question.

Fiesta Minor are playing Bar Bloc in Glasgow tomorrow night – 4th April. It’s free, so get yourself down there! The band are also supporting Grader and Midnight Souls on Saturday 11th May at Audio.

Sonic ReducersEarlier on this week I interviewed Daniel Cairney and Chris Roarty from awesome local punk band Sonic Reducers, talking about the future of anarchy, words like “hypersonic”, and the promise of a new EP.

How long have you guys been together?
Daniel:
This current line-up has been together since June 2011, but the band started as Delgado in September 2010.

Your first album’s out, N.F.I.A. (No Future In Anarchy) why did you decide on this as your album’s title?
Daniel: The album was originally going to be titled Punkeye (an in joke between the band and some friends) but it was later realized that the title was a bit too silly and would probably lose it’s humour the more people asked about it! So, the song No Future In Anarchy existed already, and I always just liked the title because it expresses discontent with a lot of the people who think it’s still 1977 and don’t really translate their punk spirit into the modern world, as the Sex Pistols’ idea of Anarchy was cool at the time, but it’s not really done anything since then, and we’re all about moving forward!

If you could describe your band in 3 words, what would they be?
Daniel: Loud, Fast, Fun.
Chris: Maniacal, Hypersonic and Humorous.

You have a song called Punk Rock Band – what would be your advice to any people wanting to start their own punk rock band?
Daniel: My main piece of advice in starting a punk rock band is just to be yourself. When you think about it, all the punk bands, whose music has stood the test of time, have done so because they all had unique sounding music, which has been imitated a lot, but never really matched.
Chris: Personally, I think musicianship is the most important. Whenever Daniel comes in with a song, say Young Blood, it’s usually just a basic structure that could still pass off as a song, though just before we recorded the album we added more parts like a reggae section and a breakdown. We did the same with Going Back. One of our newer songs, Unscathed, which can be heard on our Soundcloud, has been greatly sharpened recently with a few changes. I’m excited for releasing that song particularly. Things like that wouldn’t happen if we didn’t get a say. I also think that being musically versatile can help, for instance, fusing styles together. It also makes things sound cooler!

What are your plans for this year?
Daniel: This year, we plan to do a lot of new stuff! With a new EP and hopefully a concept album, so it should be interesting! Most of the songs for the EP are ready, but the concept album is still early doors, so we can’t really guarantee it will be done this year but here’s hoping!
Chris: Basically what Daniel said, but I’m probably going to work on getting my drums sounding tighter for the remainder of the year, and throw some things I’ve not really done in there too for a challenge.

Check out Sonic Reducers’ current EP, N.F.I.A, right here on Bandcamp! http://www.sonicreducersuk.bandcamp.com