It’s my pleasure to interview today the five members of the alternative rock/metal band “Sons of Sin” from Belfast, Northern Ireland, whose music had an incredible success on Jamendo during the last weeks. When you take a look at their Facebook page, you can read the following message : “Our message is simple : where our music is accepted, we shall play it loud. Where our music is challenged, we will play it louder.” Let’s try to dig a little more to understand who’s hiding behind this emerging band !
1. Could you tell us a little more about you and how you met ?
It started 3 or 4 years ago. Duke posted an ad on a local music forum to recruit musicians for a band. Mickey got in touch and they decided to create a band, which had to split later. Mickey carried on with someone else and Duke gave up on music for a year. Duke was sitting in a local bar with “Nigel” (our bass player) who suggested, as a drunken idea, to put a band together. We started with a first singer who then left so Mickey searched Youtube for local singers / songwriters (finding a good singer / frontman in this country is like ‘finding hens teeth’ !) and we came across Grant who passed the audition successfully. We wanted a cool drummer so we contacted people of Belfast’s local music scene and we found Gary (Aka Gizmo). We had found the missing piece to complete the line-up that is now known as Sons Of Sin.
2. What are your influences? If you had to listen to one artist for the rest of your life, who would that be?
Duke – I would listen to the band Avenged Sevenfold or anything with Randy Rhoads playing guitar in it.
Grant - I grew up listening to Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson, so my influences come from pop and soul; from which I adopted the vocal style.
Mickey - Slash, Thomas Silver, Ace Frehley, Yohio
Gary – I’ve always listened to Iron Maiden and looked up to Niko McBrain for inspiration because he is an excellent drummer.
Nigel - Avenged Sevenfold, Mr big, Old School Metallica, Megadeth
3. You just released your new album “Rebelation” on Jamendo which experienced an incredible success in just a few weeks. What’s the story behind it?
We wanted to create good music that people can relate to. Mickey wrote the song “The Dream” right after someone told him to quit and give up on music because it will never go anywhere. The song is a bit ironic as such. We took this song and added that Sons Of Sin spice to it. He then wrote the lyrics of our second song but the songwriting process took longer because all of us brought something to it. We put a lot of time into creating our songs and don’t stop until we have found something perfect (aka a great song with a strong meaning because “music is the universal language”).
4. What are the best memories you keep from these performances and your fans?
The best memory we kept from our gigs was our very first live show. We had worked on our own special cover of “Fuck You” by Cee Lo Green and were really unsure about what people, who were used to rock/metal nights, would think of us. We knocked it our of the park and people loved us and sang along! Also, we receive a lot of fan art and things along those lines from all around the world and the fact that it’s happening at all in such early days of the band is really overwhelming us.
5. If we switched places and I was the artist and you were asking the questions, what is one question you would ask me? What would you reply to this same question?
The question would be : Where do you see youselves in a year from now? I would like to see Sons of Sin signed to a record label, making our first professional album and touring the nation, doing what we do best.
6. You chose to share your music for free under Creative Commons licenses on Jamendo. Why did you make this decision?
We took our experience from the music world we knew : Other bands seemed to hit the studio and then straight away put their music up for sale. In our eyes, people would not pay for a band they don’t know. We think that making a presence is more important for now. We didn’t think putting our music on Jamendo for free download would kick off or go as far as it has in such amount of time ! We would love to get signed one day.
7. And since it’s a tradition at Jamendo : Is there a fun fact about you that your fans don’t know and would be surprised to hear about?
Grant – One of my friend working as a french teacher in Belfast contacted me because the french student who was supposed to come to class to talk about French culture couldn’t make it. She knew I studied both French and Drama in University and begged me to pretend to be that student, which I agreed. I had to spend 8 hours pretending to be a French exchange student to both students and teachers. Let’s just say my fake French accent was very good by the end of the day !
Mickey- On the night of our first gig, my mind drew blank and I couldn’t remember any of the songs we were about to play so I had to borrow Duke’s phone and go sit in a quiet area to jog my memory.
You enjoyed the interview? Support Sons of Sin !
Jamendo : Sons of Sin
Facebook : www.facebook.com/sonsofsinofficial
How long does it take two people to meet and merge together into a musical symbiosis?
In the case of India-based British singer Sarah King and French musician Laurent Danis, it only took five minutes on the lonely and rocky top of Mount Arunachala, a meeting place in the hot region of Tamil Nadu for weary travelers migrating from northern India. A quick discussion that could have led nowhere if they didn't have a friend in common who invited Sarah on vacation in the south of France, only a few kilometers away from where Laurent lives.
Both songwriters for years, both in search of inspiration, it was the right place at the right time. Sarah was in a place where she was slowly losing faith in her songwriting, and Laurent gave her a whole new approach. He insisted on hearing her demos: the tracks were low quality, but he was instantly struck by the melancholic and joyful introspective lyrics, and such a beautiful voice…
He came back two days later with instrumental ideas, and right away they started recording what would become Who I Am, currently on Jamendo. The result is an excellent combination of jazz and folk: the meeting between Laurent Danis' soft, relaxing guitar, his gentle picking carrying the soothing voice of Sarah King, all led by the soulful lyrics she had written, dealing with the distance experienced by those who have lived away from their roots.
The duo takes us on the dusty roads and trails of southern India, on a journey to discover the charm and pure sweetness found in "Soldier Boy," "Prayer," "Rise In Love", small minimalist pearls, in some ways similar to some ballads by Norah Jones. As a matter of fact, Norah Jones also has her roots in India (her father was the great Indian sitar player Ravi Shankar). The sub-continent is a confirmed source of inspiration and exchange between cultures, for all those who seek individuality and change.
Article in collaboration with Laurent Danis, and Nicola Tenani from Sounds Behind The Corner - http://www.soundsbehindthecorner.org
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