Flares n Seagulls contributor Godzilla Blues caught up with Pete Wareham (sax and vocals) from the genre challenged Acoustic Ladyland as they were about to travel to Cardiff, taking in Exeter, Liverpool, Leeds and Manchester en route to Sunny Aberdeen. Heres what they had to say.
Hello Pete, how’s things? Can you tell us a bit about Acoustic Ladyland for those who are unfamiliar with the band?
A band consisting of saxophone, guitar, bass and drums which attempts to marry improvisation and risk-taking with big melodies and honest family fun.
What are Acoustic Ladyland’s main goals and ambitions?
To always evolve, remaining flexible to our changing tastes, and to make good, exciting music.
What plans for new material do you have in 2010?
We are working on new material at the moment for another album, to come out in 2011 hopefully.
You have several projects on the go between Acoustic Ladyland, Polar Bear and Fulborn Teversham – how do you find time to devote to them all? Is there an order of priority for the bands in terms of recording and touring commitments?
There is no priority, unless one of the bands has a particularly exciting thing happening that space needs to be made for. It’s usually about whoever gets to the diaries first! We do try and plan as long-range as possible though.
Are there any countries that Acoustic Ladyland have toured in that they particularly enjoy? Anywhere that they haven’t been that they really want to get to?
Always have lots of fun in Benelux, France, Ireland etc. Would love to play in America and anywhere hot!
You are playing in Aberdeen soon and seem to be here on a frequent basis – is that a conscious effort to get to more out of the way places than the traditional touring routes normally take in or does Seb insist on it hailing from this area? How do you enjoy playing in Aberdeen?
We try and include Scotland wherever possible and we’ve built up a good reputation with the Tunnels. It’s always lovely to hang out with Seb’s family and it feels like we have a good following there.
I saw Acoustic Ladyland play at The Lemon Tree a few years back supported by a band called Strobing Goat, who were apparently an early band of Seb’s and indeed he stood in on drums for a song. They reminded me of Ministry which is a fair departure from your current endeavours – what sort of musical history do yourself and the other band members have?
We have all played many many different styles of music throughout our lives.
What music do Acoustic Ladyland enjoy listening to?
Are there any bands that you would like to tour/play with?
What is your opinion on shows like The X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent, do they offer an opportunity to those who would perhaps otherwise never have them or is it merely preying on peoples hopes and dreams?
I don’t see anything wrong with it – it gets people thinking about music which is a good thing. Mainstream entertainment has been around for a very long time and doesn’t ever really change, in my view.
A hypothetical question – if you could sacrifice anyone to resurrect someone who is dead, who would you sacrifice/resurrect?
I can’t imagine thinking that someone who is alive now should not be. I’d like to have a chat with John Coltrane though!
Gordon Brown – scapegoat or the manufacturer of his own downfall?
I guess we’ll find out in May. I personally think he displays integrity, but I know nothing whatsoever about politics.
How has the credit crunch and ongoing fall out affected the music business in your experience, if at all?
Record sales are down, audience figures are down, promoters taking less risks and venues closing. But culture always adapts to survive, so while I think it’s sad, I’m also feeling a slow renaissance.
Is Seb aware of the recent furore surrounding proposals to rip up the Union Terrace Gardens in Aberdeen to build a big square in the city centre? If so, what was his take on it all?
He thinks it would be an awful shame to rip up those gardens!
The band has some early links to Jimi Hendrix – yet another album of ‘unreleased’ Hendrix material has surfaced recently – what is your opinion on the continued plundering of archive material for certain artists, is there a point when it would be better to leave it alone?
There will always be a clamour for anything recorded by such geniuses, but sometimes I feel that these posthumous releases undermine the integrity of the original albums. But then no-one’s forcing us to listen to them I suppose…
Can you name 3 key influences, be it musical, cinema, literature, whatever?
Almodovar, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Led Zeppelin, Picasso. Sorry that’s four.
What film would have been the ideal one for Acoustic Ladyland to soundtrack?
BIg question! Trainspotting?
Finally some standard questions we ask for the site –
Name your 5 desert island tracks.
Real Life- Joan As Policewoman
Habibi – Ali Hassan Kuban
Since I’ve Been Loving You – Led Zeppelin
A Love Supreme – John Coltrane
Kooks – David Bowie
Anything else you would like to add?
Always got new things happening at our MySpace site.
And finally, what are your favourite flavour of crisps?
T-bone steak flavour Roysters.
Thanks for your time Pete and I’ll see you on Friday the 2nd of April. Godzilla Blues
You can download album track “Living With a Tiger” here (free).