ITN Magazine: Let's talk a little about the history of your band. When did you originally form and is this the original line-up?
Hi there, right now there is only me! I built a studio some time ago and started writing tunes, these are the first to make it out. I did the music on there except for harmonica and sax, which a couple of mates of mine did. There was a band 16/17 which did a few gigs, but bands are hard work ...
ITN Magazine: How would you categorize the style of the band?
It s been described to me as British R and B meets Southern Boogie. Like Cream meets ZZ Skynyrd or something.
ITN Magazine: What image do you want your music to convey to your fans?
Have a good time, forget your troubles for a night, have a beer or 3, have a dance, wake up not sure what happened kind of thing. These are my favourite nights!
ITN Magazine: Who are your influences and how have they shaped your bands sound?
In the case of this release I’d say ZZ Top, Creedence JL Hooker, George T Thorogood , a tad of Hendrixy/Hawkwind maybe in the case of Freakout. But the new stuff is going to sound a bit different I think, more direct
ITN Magazine: Let's talk a little about your latest album what are the listeners in store for with this release ?
We got blues, we got rock, some politics, a bit of sexiness, all wrapped up with some good grooves and great hard hitting production
ITN Magazine: Where did record your latest release at?
It was done in my own studio, in Wakefield, and then remixed at Peak Studio s Bradford.
ITN Magazine: Producers are a very important factor in recording a good record. Who did you use to produce your record?
I guess it’s self-produced, which may be is one reason it took so long!
ITN Magazine: Does the entire band contribute to the writing process?
I love jamming with the band when I have a line up, so yeah but these songs where written by my self though
ITN Magazine: How do you feel the band has evolved musically and personally over the last year?
Well I ve got into a lot of acoustic music, and I hope to release a record this year of some of this stuff. But when I tour later this year I ll be recording the band as well playing new stuff so watch this space!
ITN Magazine: Where do you draw the inspiration for the songs you write?
Just from life really, as I see it, as I walk through from day to day. Sometimes my home life inspires me, sometimes issues the world is dealing with, like in the song Movietown, but I guess I approach it from the human side of things. It’s easy to forget every time we hear a news story that it’s people involved like you and me, you know?
ITN Magazine: How important do you rate the lyrical side of your albums?
Well the old joke is you only need lyrics in order to get to the guitar solo! Me I take it a bit more seriously than that! I think a song should say something and should move people in someway and the lyrics are as big apart of this as any other. If I ve written what I think is a good lyric I m pretty pleased about it actually, like I read em to my wife and stuff....
ITN Magazine: What are your current tour plans, if any?
This autumn, UK and Europe. The interesting thing will be the line up. It may well end up being a flexible solo/duo/trio/4 o kind of thing-I like playing acoustic, I find it kinda freeing.Though its great ripping it up with a band as well so-we shall see!
ITN Magazine: Describe your live performance for those who have never seen you live?
My wife says ‘Fun' so there y go. But you will see a show with variety of sounds and material, and then at the end we are all having fun. J B Goode? Why the hell not.
ITN Magazine: What do you think of the music industry right now?
A producer friend of mine say s there is actually no such thing anymore! He s been working since the 60‘s doing a variety of stuff ...I guess what he means is the money isn’t there anymore like it used to be. As a band or artist there s much less opportunity to develop what your doing whilst actually earning, whether it be on a support tour or just being signed to a development deal or something. The closure of venues has become a real issue in the UK as well.
Friends of mine in the USA say the same.
It’s like bands are either massive in stadiums or such or they are nobody’s trying to do business in pubs and clubs where as 20 years ago you could be touring and doing business in midsize venues-I used to work as road crew and sound engineer for bands doing this.
Given how important music is to so many people all over the world and how many musicians/engineers/crew/venue operators pay taxes and support the economies of their countries this is an increasingly sad state of affairs. Having said that-if it was easy everybody would be doing it, right?
ITN Magazine: Did you find it hard to break into the business and what was the biggest obstacle you had to overcome?
Hah! Still trying to break in! Biggest obstacle so far getting the boys out of the pub and into the rehearsal room.
ITN Magazine: Tell us about your thoughts on your local music scene?
Here we are struggling. It’s a small town and there s no college or university to bring new blood in like there used to be. Having said that, there is plenty of people trying to keep it going. There is always somebody doing something good.
Local festivals Clarence Park and Long Division are good too, bringing talent from all over the country and others on occasion.
ITN Magazine: How has Social Networking (Facebook,Twitter, etc.) impacted your band?
Um not really, though it’s good to just do something and stick it on there, for a bit of feedback. I did a version of Canned Heat’s ‘On the Road’ with my last line up and stuck it up there.
I think it’s great you can get something to an audience that fast.
ITN Magazine: Where can our readers find you on the web?
hoobyandtheyabbit.com, Spotify, Amazon and I Tunes of course. Some kind soul up loaded this release to Youtube so you can check it out on there, and also you can down load or order a CD on Bandcamp, just search for ‘Hooby and the Yabbit’.
ITN Magazine: What equipment is the band using and do you have any endorsements currently?
Mostly a load of old junk y know! Old Marshall heads and stuff. My guitars are a 1980 Les Paul Standard and an Epiphone version of the Les Paul 56 Gold Top. This is a great instrument and features a lot on ‘Out Of Time’. My Acoustic is a Richwood, which I guess is a budget instrument to some by I get on okay with it. No endorsements yet but my door is always open guys….
ITN Magazine: Thanks for answering these questions. Do you have any last comments for our readers?
The very best of luck to all of you, and be nice to your Mum’s.
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