An Interview with 'Rich Brown'
Who are the band members and what do they play?
Richard Brown - Vocals/guitar/banjo/mandolin/bass/recording/producing & video editing
How and where did you get together?
I started out playing in school bands. Started to enjoy the freedom and 'portability' of playing solo after moving around a lot. Switched to acoustic, got into folk. Been writing a reasonably steady flow of songs now for about 10 years.
What are the band's main influences?
John Martyn, Bob Dylan, Counting Crows
Have you played any notable gigs, festivals or other events? Likewise radio or TV appearances?
Shepley Folk festival, Tramlines Fringe festival, Peace in the park festival, Worral folk & ale festival
Are there any other interesting or amusing happenings – no matter how small – that the band have been involved with that would be of interest to those who like your music?
I wrote a song once called 'prostitute gammon'. It came about after drinking in a pub in Sheffield and being given some free gammon from a prostitute who had just been thrown out of hospital for drinking before an operation. The sad thing is that she said she had shoplifted it from Tesco. The branding was not anything that tesco stocked. She had lied about WHERE she had shoplifted from. Tragic. Three days later I cooked that gammon. It was decent to be fair.
Do you have any favourable quotes from previous reviews of the band that you'd be happy to share?
'One man folk wrecking ball'
Where was the single/EP/album recorded and who was involved in its production?
I have a demo that I recorded myself in and around the house. The budget was £0.00. Sadly in the space of a year it already sounds worse than my current work. Steep curve.
Is there a particular ethos behind the single/EP/album or any particular music styles or events that inspired it?
I guess the DIY ethos. Yearning for simpler times. I have always loved the naked genuineness of a lot of 60s/70s acoustic folk music, wondered if the modern world was still capable of appreciating it.
Can you briefly describe what the song/each song is about? If you are releasing an album them either describe the thinking behind the project or choose a couple of lead tracks to focus on.
The opening track of Half cut (New & in between) is a love song. Unashamed and open. I wrote it when I met my (then) girlfriend and now (wife). Stumped is a flippant track about going to see my 'second family' which is a village up near Huddersfield full of lovely sociable folk who like a drink and know how to have a good singalong. Totes emosh is an attack on the political attitude of 'don't rock the boat' and the perceived wisdom that keeps our world stagnant and in constant danger.
Libertalia is a song about historical events from the 18th century involving proto-socialist clamouring from pirate groups who were then crushed and destroyed by the navy due to the worry of it spreading.
Won't take me alive is a song about mental health. The irony of that one is that I wrote it with the awful side of social media in mind, then proceeded to use social media more than ever before as I tried to find people to listen to it. Sennen to Lands end was a poem I wrote many years ago. I recorded it as a three part harmony at some point years after but it lay forgotten for a long time. I found the track and decided to re-make it. It's about a failed relationship.
Broken moon is a love song about missing someone very far away. When I first met my wife she would have to fly back to Canada for three or four week periods. This is an eternity to someone madly in love. Almost close is a song poking fun at myself in many ways about my ever changing levels of commitment to 'proper music' and missing the feeling of being in a band, having regular gigs and enjoying the 'life'.
Were there any notable or amusing happenings surrounding the recording/production of the EP? As above, list whatever might be of relevance.
One of the tracks was recorded in a childs plastic wendy house. Sadly the logistics eventually demanded a re-record.
Please provide a one or two-line personal quote that can be attributed to a band member, about either the band themselves or the release. Obviously the more eye-catching this is the better.
'An occasionally nice sounding car crash'