Friday, 29 August 2014

Meet The Band: Lucius

Brooklyn based band Lucius recently toured the UK and band member Pete took time out to answer some of my questions for The Guide.

Who are you and how did you come together?
We are Lucius, we are a band and we came together to sing and rock and spread joy across the universe.

Where are you from?
We we all born from different parts of the country, the west coast, the south, the Midwest, New England even the upper peninsula of Michigan - but we all met in Ditmas park Brooklyn. I would say Lucius was born in Brooklyn.

How would you describe your music style?
It's more interesting to hear other people describe our style to us. We might be the creators but everyone else is the listener - maybe the audience has a better vantage point in which to tell us what we sound like. I tell people that we play music - sometimes it's quiet and sometimes it's loud, maybe they will like it.

What’s been your best live experience?
We have had a bit of a whirlwind year. We have played well over a hundred shows and still have about three months or so of touring left. It's hard to gauge because so there have been so many shows that have had so many great aspects to them, sometimes it's a great set, sometimes it's a great venue and sometimes it's a great audience - and often times all of those things come together. We had an amazing time at the Nelsonville music festival this year - it's a wonderful festival run by a group of really amazing supporters of Music, art and local farmers and cooks.

You have a new single and album coming soon can you tell us more about that?
We are so excited to start working on new material - after almost two years of touring we are chomping at the bit to make a new record. I think it will really reflect the experiences we've had in the road and how much that's influenced our live show and how we think about creating and performing music.

You’re touring shortly are you looking forward to that?
We are almost always touring and we are always looking forward to seeing more of the world, meeting new people and finding a new audience. We love to tour, it makes everywhere seem like home and everyone you meet like a member of your family we are very fortunate to be able to tour as much as we do.

What can people expect from your forthcoming Bristol gig?
We have never been there, so we can only hope to play our asses off and hopefully the audience will respond to that.

Will you be coming to Wales sometime in the future?
I sure as heck hope so!

Where can people hear your music?
Come to a show! It's the best way to listen to music! Or you can hear us online -  try not to get distracted by the onslaught of websites dedicated to fainting goats or videos of baby kittens being cute or newscasters accidentally saying inappropriate things on TV - that's a wormhole that you might not escape from and never get around to actually listening to our music - just skip the internet just come to a live show.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Interviews With West End Actors Rob Wilshaw And Lloyd Green

Rob Wilshaw Interview from The Guide
I recently had the opportunity to interview two young actors from South Wales  who are now starring in musicals in London's West-End. In both instances I had previously witnessed both actors in local productions in Newport in previous years.

Rob Wilshaw had previously been Prince Charming in Newport Riverfont's 2011 pantomime Cinderella. We would later see him in Joseph and His Technicolor Dreamcoat at Wales Millennium Centre.

Rob has recently joined the cast of Jersey Boys in London. “I play Donny and Knuckles as well as other characters,” Rob told me, “Although its not as dance orientated as Joseph, I’m still on the go all the time. I go on stage to be one character then run off get changed quickly run back on and become someone else straight away.”

Lloyd Green Interview from The Guide
Jersey Boys is a play with music,” continues Rob, “so, it’s actually really nice to do some gritty scenes where you get to act. Its nixes to do something with a bit of depth to it but then again have the joy of the music and dancing its really cool.”

Lloyd Green who hails from Caldicot recently took over the role of Sky in the West End production of Mamma Mia. I had previously seen Lloyd in a supporting role in a local production of The Producers some years ago so it was good to see his new-found success in his new show.

Lloyd recently completed three years in drama school, and was spotted  by Mamma Mia! casting director Steve Crockett during a student showcase, “ I went in and auditioned for a couple of rounds. Then he called me on the way home that day and said “we are considering you for the role would you be interested?” I was confirmed two days later, it was amazing.”

“I couldn't believe it, if I'm honest, I had a great audition and so much fun, everyone here is so lovely and bubbly, it was fantastic, but I never actually thought it would happen. “
  • Jersey Boys is currently playing at the Piccadilly Theatre, London, while Mamma Mia! is playing at The Novello Theatre, Aldwych.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Cuttings - Previewing Doctor Who : Deep Breath

It was a big thrill recently to attend the red carpet Doctor Who screening of Deep Breath in Cardiff with my daughter. It was a lovely day in early August and the crowds were out to great Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman and some Daleks and Cybermen.

Both Seren and I queued for hours to get a glimpse of the series stars and Seren even managed to get Steven Moffat to sign my latest Doctor Who Magazine.

Attending the screening at St David's Hall was a big thrill, as was hearing new Doctor, Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman and series show runner Steven Moffat talk about the series.

Following the screening we managed to get new series star Samuel Anderson to autograph our photos (unfortunately we didn't get Peter or Jenna).

As I'd tweeted our experiences for The Argus I briefly wrote a piece up on my return home. Imagine my surprise when it made page 3 of the following days edition!

I also wrote a preview piece prior to the broadcast of Deep Breath last week which appeared in The Guide.

Yes it can be great fun writing about Doctor Who as long as you remember to avoid spoilers!

Deep Breath Reviewed

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Paddy James Plays Newport Riverfront Terrace

The Red Devils Plane flies over Newport
The link between Danielle Lewis and Paddy James playing  Saturday afternoon's terrace sessions at The Riverfront was bridged by the descending parachutes of The Red Devils onto nearby Rodney Parade.

Paddy James
Following the display Paddy  took to the stage with an entertaining acoustic set full of energy and a bit of a twinkle in his eye.

Paddy on stage
He performed songs from his forthcoming debut EP - ‘The Lost Boy’ - which is set to be released in early 2015 and squeezed in his appearance at The NATO gig ahead of another show in Swansea later in the day for the IPC Athletics closing ceremony in Swansea.

Paddy encourages audience participation
The afternoon came to an end with more music from Tobias Robertson and Ellie Makes Music.  Iknow we had great fun asa family and hopefully we'll see many of these musicians again in the future.

Rachel and Seren enjoying the afternoon
The boys with some new cuddly toys

Monday, 25 August 2014

Danielle Lewis Plays Newport Riverfront Terrace

Danielle Lewis
Following on from yesterdays pictures of Remembering August playing Newport Riverfront Terrace on Saturday afternoon, today's photographs highlight New Quay singer/songwriter Danielle Lewis.

Danielle entertains the audience
We saw Danielle perform the Riverfront Terrace recently and I had pleasure in featuring her in The Guide's Meet The Artist a short while ago.

Danielle performs in both English and Welsh

Danielle is making exciting waves with her acoustic compositions mixing a variety of English and Welsh material including songs from her debut EP Paper Hearts as well a few interesting covers. Particularly impressive was her rendition of You're The One That I Want from Grease. Danielle will be releasing her second EP shortly.
A magic Danielle moment

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