Cracking Q&A with The Aim courtesy of Music of the Future Blog...
MOD ROCK WITH A TWIST OF NORTHERN SOUL ‘THE AIM’ ARE SET TO TAKE IT HIGH
What is the bands name? The Aim
What are your names and the instruments you play? Grant Judges – vocals, Jamie Tongue – rhythm guitar, Vince Dunn – drums, Michael Wetherilt – keys, Michael Searle – bass guitar, James Ford – lead guitar
How did you come up with the bands name? We wanted something very short and sweet, very “mod” and something that is mentioned in every day conversation around the world
What is your genre of music? Mod, rock, northern soul
Give us a little bio about you and you guys as individuals. Grant originally formed the band in early 90`s with two mates in Brixton South London. Grant was originally the drummer! We released a single on Detour Records and then split up! Forward 20 years and Grant decided to reform the band to record a charity single “Lions Pride” for Food For All, a London charity that feeds over a 1000 homeless/hungry people per day, which is run by 80`s pop star Jennie `Bellestar` Matthias. Grant couldn’t track down the two other original members so he roped in Jamie Tongue and a couple of other mates to record the `one off` single. Grant enjoyed being back in The Aim` so decided to record some more. He came up with a concept idea called `What a way to Earn a Living` and wrote nine new songs centred around nine different characters and their stories. Grant took over vocal duties, talked Jamie and Michael Wetherilt into joining full time and used session musicians to record the new album. Some live dates were soon to follow, supporting Dave Wakeling and the English Beat on their UK tour so Grant recruited James Ford, Vince Dunn and Michael Searle to become permanent members too. James has played with Mel Gaynor and Vince had worked with Chaka Khan, Madonna, Kylie Minogue and Pharrell to name but a few, so we knew it was going to work from the off! Second album “Days Like These” quickly followed along with a batch of Summer festivals. More gigs with the English Beat, The Hoosiers, Paul Young, The Blockheads.
What made you go in to music? I (Grant) got into music because of my dad. He was an Elvis impersonator and lived for music. Music was always being played in the house when I was growing up. I grew up in Brixton and was fed a diet of a whole range of music from Elvis, Matt Monro, The Jam, The Who, Small Faces, Barry Manilow right through to Yellowman, Bob Marley
Are you a signed? No, we are a totally independent band, funded by ourselves, although Polydor and Fiction Records have shown a little interest recently
You released album 'Days Like These', what’s the meaning behind the title? Our first album was called `What a Way to Earn a Living` and I wanted to carry on with an emotional type of theme for the new title…we all have a moan sometimes about work/life and how there must be a better/easier way to earn a living, and we all have days where experience a whole leap of emotions within a 24 hour period; guilt, insecurity, we feel fat, skinny, ugly, useless etc…whether it’s good or bad we all have “Days Like These”.
Describe each track in three words. Three words!! Wow! OK…tricky but here goes:`Wasting Your Time` - a cheating husband `Friday Night` - yes it`s Friday!!! `Back and Forth` - rock and roll! `Dream Dancer` - your dream lady `Ballad of the Lonely` - sad lonely story `Days Like These` - girl next door `Leave it Behind` - getting off drugs `Burning Summer` - filthy dirty sexy `It`s Better to Forget Than to Remember Me and Cry` - sad love story `Nothing Changes` - politically thought provoking `Hold You Tight` - love and insecurity `So What!` - working man blues `Nice and Pacey Vincey!` - massive drum solo `The Sun Has Never Shone` - life love loss
Who was the first person you let listen to it? The very first person (outside of the band) we let listen to it was a gentleman called Jon Astley. Jon very kindly offered to master the album at his studios in Twickenham. Jon has mastered for The Who, Small Faces, The Stereophonics, Level 42, Sting, Eric Clapton to name but a few, so to have someone of his calibre offer to master it was an absolute honour to be perfectly honest. We had to pinch ourselves! I was very nervous when Jon listened through from start to finish before he started work on mastering it, especially as he had worked with all these top names, but after the last track finished he looked at me and said “what a cracker of an album”!!! That made my day!
What can you tell us about your new releases? Our new album is a massive step up from our first album and it includes brass sections, strings and even an old skool buddy rich style drum solo track! It certainly takes you on a musical `journey` of love, life, loss, happiness, sadness, social issues and good old fashioned rock and roll baby!
Do you have gigs coming up or a tour in planning? We have a big showcase gig on 2nd February at the Hideaway Jazz Cub in Streatham, South London where we will be performing both albums with full band and brass and strings sections! Tickets only £10 so come along! (doors open at 7pm)
We have some gigs lines up in March and April and hopefully we will be back on tour with Dave Wakeling and the English Beat this year and hopefully a few festivals in the Summer.
If you will be touring this year where will you guys be heading? No tour as yet, but we will play anywhere and everywhere so all you promoters/venues get in touch!
Who are your influences? Our influences range from The Who, The Jam, The Style Council, The Small Faces, The Kinks, The Beatles, all the big band music, Elvis, Green Day, Marvin Gaye, Duke Ellington, Oasis, Paul Weller, Bob Marley…there are so many more!
How do you get inspiration to write songs? Mainly from real life stories in the news or from people we’ve met along the way. I’ve always had the fascination of songs being little stories, whether they be fictional or based on real events. For instance, the song `Ballad of the Lonely`. I was sitting on a train on the way home from a night out and I kept catching the reflection of a girl looking out of the train window and our gaze kept meeting. Within a split second I came up with the opening line `The girl in the reflection keeps on grabbing my attention`…by the time my stop had arrived 20 minutes later I’d written most of the song and created the sad, lonely character of `Ballad of the Lonely`…I’m a very observational song writer.
Where do you see yourself now in 5 Years? Hopefully touring the world with no.1 albums under our belt!
When you’re not doing music, what do you do? Erm…thinking about music…talking about music…reading about music.
What was the song you listened to most that influenced you to go more in to the music scene? `The Paris Match` by The Style Council.
If you had one of your songs played on a TV show or Film which would you want it to be? `Ballad of the Lonely`.
What's the best advice you have ever been given? When I was young my dad said to me “everyone has a story to tell…doesn’t cost you anything to listen and to understand it”.
What advice would you give to aspiring musicians not about the industry and just as an artist? Just be yourself.
What quote or saying do you always stick by? See above…”everyone has a story to tell…doesn’t cost you anything to listen and to understand it”.
When you are at a gig, what are five things you cannot forget? Always get there early…always play the gig like it`s your last…always talk to your `fans` before and after…always warm up…and always be professional in every way.
Do you have social media accounts so your fans can follow you?
January 18, 2017 9:54am ET by Lime Jam PR