On March 26, Manchester’s Gold Jacks, consisting of Stewart Burns, James Gaskell, Tom Smith and Liam Dunning took to the stage with two other bands for the launch of a new independent Manchester record label, ‘Playing with Sound’. Reporting for Quays News entertainment, I caught up with them before their set…
The band began jamming together in practice rooms three years ago. A year later, current drummer James came into the picture and the bands success apparently went ‘up from there’.
Lead vocals, Stewart and bassist Tom grew up together and went on to meet guitarist Liam through university. They later met James through, what was described as a musician’s version of Tinder.
“We met on Tinder or Grinder for bands.”
Although the band are a collection of talented musicians, they didn’t come from musical families.
“Our parents were into listening to music but didn’t make it like we do now.”
Front man Stewart explains: “I wanted to have a drum kit in my house but it was too small so I had to get a guitar. I was basically forced into it through size.”
“I think the main thing that goes through our heads during a gig is don’t f**k up, don’t f**k up.”
When asking the band about their inspirations and influences they told me that their styles vary from RnB to disco to heavy rock.
“Whatever playlist we have going on at the time is going to completely influence whatever we’re writing.
“I like to go out and look at nature to get inspiration,” James said.
The band gave four different answers asked what their favourite songs they have written were. Dying Skies and Neon Soul were two of the favourite tracks mentioned, along with the band’s latest single Take It Back which is now available on Spotify and iTunes.
Like with anyone, the band had some guilty pleasure songs that you they could sometimes be caught listening to. These ranged from Justin Timberlake to Usher to Britney Spears,
“Toxic is an absolutely fantastic record.”
“One of our best gigs so far was actually at this venue (Night & Day Café) last year. It was one we organized ourselves for a single release and it was a sell out.”
As far as dream venues to perform goes, the band agreed that Glastonbury is a goal for them, but when it comes to local venues, the famous Albert Hall was somewhere that came into discussion. Also, Coachella, a festival in California was somewhere the band dream of performing at. A venue a bit further from home was also mentioned… “Space, no ones done that yet right?”
“I would play a gig in the portaloos at Glastonbury to say I’ve played there”
There are a variety of musicians the band would like to or have dreams of working with such as Josh Homme, front man of Queens Of The Stone Age and the likes of Alex Turner and Miles Kane: “I don’t know what would happen, we’d probably just end up having loads of beers,” Liam laughed.
“I think you’d be consumed by like, an inferiority complex, and just be like ‘wow you’re dead good you,’” Tom expanded.
Gold Jacks have decided to stick with Playing With Sound for their upcoming releases and in the future, there are talks of a mini tour for the band and a potential EP at the end of the year.
The band are “yearning for a bigger body of work, we’ve just done single after single and that’s great but each time, you have to throw whichever single it is at an audience with a particular liking when really, our stuff overlaps loads of different genres.”
Of course, Gold Jacks shared some advice for people who are thinking of going into a music career. They began by saying “right… lets tell you who’s a pr**k.” but on a more serious note, Stewart explains: “You’ve got to do what you love and not be bothered about the money. You will lose a lot of time but you’ve got to enjoy it.”
James continued with: “I’ve played in bands before where I’ve not enjoyed the music we’re playing, but you’ve got to enjoy what you’re doing.”
Gold Jacks new single, On Your Heels is available for preorder on iTunes now.