9 AUGUST  2000
KBEACH studio

A very special night indeed. The English band Steadman graced the K-Beach studio with a very nice chat, a few of their favorite songs, and performed a total of six songs of their own. Before doing the show I had always been told how up and coming bands are usually full of themselves. Simon, Russell and James proved how wrong this is by being some of the nicest guys I've yet to meet. In addition to the photos, check out the band's
web page, one of the most impressive I've seen yet.




Charles: Alright we're here on the Indieshop on KBeach radio at  I'm going to let you guys just check out the play list on the web site for those last few tracks.  We have the band Steadman in here if you guys want to say Hello.

Band: (all say hello but very far away sounding)

Charles: Let me do you a favor and let me turn the mics on first.  You guys want to introduce yourselves?

Simon: I'm Virginia, this is Shirley and this is Sharon.

Charles: Now we're all thoroughly confused.

Simon:  Simon, I'm pointing to myself as if people can see.  James and Russell.

Charles: And what do you all do in the band?

Simon: I sing the songs.  James plays the guitar and Russell we take it is the drummer.

Charles: Just to inform the audience of course.  You guys are from....

Russell: Hastings, England.

Charles: Actually let me get the mic closer to you

Russell: Oh I do apologize.

Simon: So unprofessional.

Russell:  Is that better?  I don't have any headphones on.  I'm the only one without them.  I'm feeling a bit left out.

Charles: Sadly we only have two but good thing we're only talking.  As long as you're not deaf in one ear we're cool.  So how's the trip going?

Simon: Well we just drove, well not just but in the last five weeks we've just driven from Seattle, no from San Francisco to Chicago to Boston then Philadelphia to South Dakota back to Seattle then back to San Francisco.  We've covered this whole country.

Russell: And Atlanta

Simon: Yeah and Atlanta, it's been great.

Charles: You've seen the backbone, the backside, the front end.....

Simon: Yep we've done it all.  We've seen a lot of gas stations.

Charles: You have a few of them on your web page as well.

Simon: Really interesting.

Charles: Any impressions of the country?

Simon: Lot of gas stations.

Charles: Most bands that come through here they play like New York.

Simon: We did New York.

Charles: They play LA then they go home.

Simon: We wanted to do the whole thing man.  It's a big country out there.

James: Soak it up some.

Russell: It's a long way for just two gigs.

Simon: If anyone is interested in buying some CBs or knives I found a great place in Nebraska.

Charles: That's crazy.

Simon: You can buy crossbows for four year olds.  Four and up.  I'm not joking.

Charles: Oh I don't doubt you at all.

Russell: That's what it says on the box.  But it's been awesome we've had some great... Awesome?  Did I just say Awesome?

Simon: You've been in America too long man.

Russell: But we've had some great venues...

Charles: It's been too long when you start saying Dude.  Which I assume they don't say much in England.

Russell: No, not a lot.

Charles: You're lucky.  I'll catch myself saying it once in a while and it's like "Oh time to move".  But like I said it's interesting that you guys would cover the whole country so well.  For the most part you're just starting out here.

Simon: Yeah I know.  Well you've got to play to everyone.  It's a big country to get around.  In the UK we've played everywhere and we thought what next - America.  Why not?

Charles: And the reception has been good?

Simon: Yeah, fabulous.  Better than expected.  Particularly for a pretty unknown band.  We turn up and most of the time we're like the first band on supporting a local band with a following and we'll turn up and by three songs in the place is rammed with people getting into it, wanting to join the mailing list, buy a cd and kiss our feet. 

Charles: I read a review on the web page about one of your Glastonbury shows.  The guy basically said he was the only one watching at first.

Simon: Yeah that's right.  That was a long time ago though.  We turned up to Glastonbury one year, we had a van full of PA equipment and our instruments and we didn't have a gig.  So we found this stage that was just sitting there empty and we asked this really old ancient hippie that happened to be running the stage if we could use it.  He just said "whatever" and there we were on the stage.  We played every night for like four nights.  Each night we played more and more people were turning up.  The last night was a Sunday night, beautiful sunset right in front of us and about five thousand people.  Word of mouth, we were posting posters on trees and stickering toilets exactly where people were sitting you know doing their thing.  So they had something to read.  People just came and flocked to see us and that just set us up in the UK.  Suddenly we had people ringing us up offering us gigs and all that.

Charles: I guess you're kind of doing the same thing as far as self promotion.

Simon: Yeah that's what we're trying to do over here.  We've got a much longer way to go but we're getting there and it's been really good so far.  Hopefully we'll be back soon.

Charles:  Of course you used to be known as the Dharmas.  Can you give a small history of the band.

Russell: Ok the Dharmas now let me see that would have been 92 or 93.  Dharmas got together.  Simon has already filled you in on Glastonbury.  Things went really well from there on really.  We got a deal signed to this cool little independent label then about three months in got sold to BMG.  So we suddenly had this major deal and it just wasn't right at all.  We were label mates with Whitney Houston and that.

Simon:  Lovely lady and all that.

Russell: Very nice lady but it was just never going to be right for the band.

Simon: She's terrible in bed though.

Russell: There was accusations of misappropriations of funds and stuff.  The usual big label rubbish and we lost the deal.

Simon: That was 95 rather than 92.  We're not that old.

Russell:  Basically we lost the deal.  We managed to rescue our album out of that and still sell the album but we decided to change the name.  A couple of band members decided to move on.  There's still four original members here in the band.  And G here - sorry James we all call him G.  He plays guitar he's been with us about a year and a half.

Charles: Just  a G thing

Simon: Yes he's the O.G.

Charles: I'm sure you've heard that a million times.

Russell: That's really how we metamorphasised into Steadman.

Charles: How would you consider the band being different now as opposed to then? What changes have been made.  You changed the name....

Russell:  Well we lost a percussionist and a keyboard player and although Ellie has started playing keyboards he was really funky so things just changed direction.  It's more guitar based now.

Simon: The Dharmas was quite festival.  A good time festival band.  Which is fine for a while but after a while you start to feel like a cabaret act.  Although I was writing songs and stuff we had kind of little routines that we did and it became a little contrived for me.  I wanted to make sure with Steadman it was all about the songs.  I've always written songs and sometimes I'd write songs and didn't put them into Dharmas because they didn't fit with the happy go lucky sound that we had.

Russell:  That's kind of another reason for changing the name.  Really it was to break away from that.  It was a real feel good factor but it was too much.  It was just too much of a party sort of thing going on.

Simon: Which we still have now with Steadman but it's also a lot more now about the songs and about music and how high Russell can jump off the stage into the crowd.

Charles: So it's more of a maturation process.

Simon: Just not to say it's boring now.  It's incredibly exciting.

Charles: With better songs right?

Simon: Exactly.  Well I hope so.

Charles: Speaking of songs we're going to play something.  You guys brought in some CDs to play.

Simon: We did.  it's 72 we've got a long night.

Charles: Everyone get their pep pills out.  What did you want to start with?

Simon: I'd like to start with this very very good song called Carry On by Crosby Stills Nash and Young.  Which was quite a main component in getting me into song writing.  I like it for the main reason that halfway through the song it goes in a completely different direction, funks out, gets groovy just roll with it.

Charles: Ok.  We'll be back in a few minutes.  If you have any questions or something we have a chat room on AOL.  Britpop Inet Radio on the UK user created rooms section and of course you can call us here in the studio we'll see you in a bit.

(break for songs)

Charles: And we're back here in the studio with Steadman on the Indieshop.  If you want to describe your picks here.  Or why you picked them.

Russell: We don't have any pictures.

Simon:  Well as I said the first one is a big tune for me because it's quite influential in getting me off my butt to write some songs and Russell explain the influence of.......

Russell:  I picked the PM Dawn track because I hadn't heard it for ages and ages and Ellie just happened to bring it along with her on the bus and she played it just as I was looking out the window thinking just this is so unreal. 

Simon: And it used to be a friend of yours.

Russell: Yeah and in reality it used to be a friend of mine.  I just really used to like it years ago.

Charles:  Now you guys have been touring all over the US.  Back to how the band was beginning and everything, when you guys turned into Steadman and you had the problems with the label what were your feelings when you got dropped?

Simon: Obviously we were angry about it.  But after you get over the initial feeling of regret, anger and all of that kind of stuff we kind of felt stronger.  Mainly because we started learning about the internet.  Particularly in England the internet is about a year behind America really.  It's catching up now.  So we started learning about MP3s and publicizing ourselves over the internet.  Our bass player is like a computer whiz kid and he just sussed it all out and we got a page up.

Charles:  And I'll say it's a really good page.

Simon: Thank You. Yeah he's worked real hard.

Russell:  Yeah he did really well.  We got a couple of best home pages in internet magazine back home so that was like a good thing for him to get because it's a bit of a thankless job really doing all that work and to get that it was really good for him. 

Charles:  It's not like being in a band where actual people see you perform.

Russell:  Exactly it's like you do all that work there and well you know.

Charles: You get a letter from somebody an anonymous letter from somebody saying "Great page"

Simon: Those do make him feel good though.  When he gets those little e-mails.  He likes that.

Charles: So now you guys are basically on the web.  Do you have a deal in the UK?

Simon: Not in the UK we haven't gone looking for a deal in the UK.  We've actually been focusing a lot of our attention in the US. 

Russell:  We were offered a couple of deals afterwards and we just couldn't negotiate them right so we decided to just stay totally independent for a while.  We weren't in a rush to go jumping into bed with any label.

Simon:  You know like when you go out with a girl and she dumps you.  You don't want to go out with someone on the rebound.  It was a similar sort of situation.

Charles:  Who doesn't?  That's the best time isn't it?

Simon:  Well unless it's just one night.  Just sexually.... no serious relationships.

Russell:  I've lost my total train of thought now.  So we just stayed fully independent.  We produced this album ourselves.  We got some help.  We met some wicked people who have given us some help.  We managed to get a very small distribution deal over here which was the whole intention of the exercise.  Which we did.

Charles:  It seems odd or unusual to me at least that an English band would come over here and concentrate more on the US than back home. Because English bands have a record of not doing as well over here.

Simon: Really?  Ahh no we did know that actually.  Although you say that, we did a bit of ground work and all of the good responses, we've had about 2 bad reviews to be honest with you but all of the good responses the majority of them came from the US.  From internet sites - Ezines, magazines people we were talking to.  We got such a good response out here.  It just felt like a natural thing to do to come out here.  And the thing is we applied to play at the CMJ conference in New York and North by Northwest just to see what would happen.  To dip our toe in the water out here and we got such a good response that we got a licensing deal out of it.  We're only small we can't focus on too many countries at one time.  We have to just choose one and seeing as how we haven't really been out here and we were getting good response we thought lets go for it.

Charles:  What's the difference between.... You're having an opportunity that bands didn't have five years ago.

Simon: Exactly and that's all because of the internet as well.

Charles:  I guess that's one of the ways that it's revolutionizing the music industry.  I mean how different is it as opposed to how you were with the Dharmas?

Simon:  Because you've got this business card that is able to get out to anyone in the world that has got access to a computer.  It's a business card, you can give people music.  We went into this internet thing with the philosophy that we want to give before we take.  So we put a few songs up on the website from the album so that people could taste it and that's something you couldn't have done five years ago. 

Russell:  Also digital recording as well.  The availability of that at home is just brilliant because we're all getting our studios done together at home.

Simon:  You don't need to go and spend three thousand pounds a day in a high top class studio anymore.

Russell:  We recorded at Peter Gabriel's studio Reel World I don't know if you've heard of it.  It's like top residential studio in a home and we recorded another one that made it in the top ten.  It's just so expensive.  You just sort of realize that it's great to do, it's great to go and see but you just don't need to do that.  You can do a lot of stuff from home or what we tend to do is set a really good location up for recording and then we pull all our resources together and have a good couple of months recording session.  And it's really good what's coming out of it. 

Charles:  How does being on your own doing everything yourself compare with what you were trying to do before?

Russell:  Well the advantages are that you answer to yourself so if something doesn't happen you can't blame it on someone else.  You really have to get your arse into gear.  It's good to have outside views sometimes though.  We do try to get as many sort of peoples different perspectives on things because sometimes you can get a bit tied up when you're doing mixes and tracks and things like that, you need other people to come and look at it. 

Simon:  The other good thing is we're all really highly motivated I think.  We've all got individual roles that are stronger than each other.  So you've got our bass player who's a web designer.  You've got Ellie who is the phone lady, who basically is the business lady who sorts everything out and cracks the whip when it needs to be cracked.  I write the songs and ......... what do you do? No Russell just had a baby so he's kind of busy with that at the moment.  But he does do a lot for the band and sorts a lot of things out.  Generally kind of everyday day to day things.   And James who is just sitting here you probably wouldn't even know that. 

James: Hi

Russell:  Did you hear something?

Simon:  He's just joined the band so he's still sort of finding his place outside of the music but there's a big place there waiting for him and a lot of money to be made.

James:  I look forward to it.

Charles:  Well let's continue with your picks.  The next one.....

Simon:  The next one, this song is not a rebel song.  This song ..... well we didn't want to go obvious.  We didn't want to choose Radiohead.  We didn't want to choose Jeff Buckley.  We didn't want to choose those bands that we love because it's too obvious.  We came here today with an agenda of being different of being unpredictable so the next track we're going to play you is Frank Sinatra and it's Chicago.

Charles:  Cool, we'll be back in a few minutes.

Charles:  Alright here we are.  Head wounds here.  This is the Indieshop at  Of course we have Steadman in studio and that was thievery corp.

Simon: Thievery Corporation.  We chose that song because it's got a great riff.  We don't know what the title is but as far as we're concerned it's called (goes into funky guitar riff)

Charles:  Tell you what, the first person that e-mails me the title of the song will win something. 

Simon:  Yeah that's a good idea.

Charles:  We'll figure out something to give away.

Simon:  Can I make up a title and then I win it?

Charles: Sure

Simon:  Umm.... oh I can't go there.  Oh I know.  Moon over my hammy.

Charles:  I think that's been taken.  You guys have been at Denny's way too long. 

James: He knew.

Charles:  And we heard before that? 

Simon:  We heard Chicago because we spent a lot of time in Chicago.  It was kind of our base over on that side of the country.  Every time we drove into the city we played that song.

Russell:  Or left the city.

Simon: Or left the city

Russell:  Or was near the city

Simon: Or wasn't even near the city.

Charles:  So you could have flashed through the photos on the Steadman web page. and looked at the photos and imagined yourself in their shoes. 

(camera goes off in the background)

Simon:  No photos please.

Charles:  You know this is America.  We don't have the paparazzi.  You can kind of relax and get comfortable.

Simon:  Yeah thanks for letting us sit here completely naked as well.

Russell:  Yeah I really appreciate that.

Charles: Well the good thing is that the console is high enough that I don't see anything.  So I'm safe but we've got photos.  For the charge of five bucks.  Email me five bucks and I will give you the password to the website for the full photo.  I'm kind of curious, we talked about how you guys got together as a band, how you started out.  How about as musicians 

Simon:  How did we get together as musicians?

Charles: On a personal level.

Russell:  James perhaps.... you say something.

James:  On a personal level?

Charles:  What got you started on guitar?

James: Guitar.  It was a strange guy playing, we were all going on a summer holiday when I was in (?) next thing I knew my Mum and Dad bought me a guitar.

Simon:  That's beautiful.

James: Yeah it's a beautiful story, I thought I'd share it with you.

Russell:  They wanted you to be that man.

James:  They did.  And before they knew it I was playing summer holiday.

Charles:  How was it learning?

James: Easy.  It's easy to learn.

Simon:  It is when you've got fingers as long as he has.

Charles: I talked to the guitarist for Gene and he was mentioning how his system was to paint your fingernails.  I guess color coded along with the chords.

Simon: That'll work.

Charles: I had never heard of that system before. 

Simon:  No I wouldn't do it.

Russell:  He just likes to paint his fingernails.

Simon:  Did he use lipstick as well?

Charles:  Not that I noticed.  That's the singer.  So how about yourself Simon?

Simon:  My Mum's a singer she used to run a club in London and she basically forced me to go and sing with her one night.  And I did and I thought hang on I like this.  There was a girl there that was kind of interested in me because I was singing and I thought hey I like this even more this is a good way to get chicks. 

Russell:  Especially when you're seven.

Simon:  I was six.

Charles:  Kind of like the Charlie Chaplin method?

Simon:  No, that's partly true but basically she's been performing all of my life so I just kind of got interested in it through here.  I didn't like the kind of stuff she was doing but it was like Irish Folk Music and that so I rebelled against that and was doing Prince songs and Waterboys songs stuff like that.  I really enjoyed it.  I really liked performing and I started writing songs myself.  That was quite a few years ago. 

Charles:  And then came Crosby Stills and Nash.

Simon: Yes.  I was given a pile of records.  Everything that has been an influence to me I was given.  I was given a telecaster guitar.  I was given a huge pile of records by someone.  I sifted through them and they were all kind of late sixties Steven Stills and Dave Mason all these old Richie Havens Woodstock albums and stuff like that.  I just got well into them and found my musical heart basically without getting to cosmic and pretentious.  Russell?

Russell:  I used to just like rhythms really.  Used to get really excited and spent a lot of time hitting buckets in the garden.  Well that's it.  It's true I used to get really excited. 

Simon:  Didn't you used to be a magician?

Russell:  Oh yeah well I don't want to talk about that.  So really from hitting buckets in the garden from the age of eight I managed to get my first drum kit at fourteen.  As soon as I got a kit I was in loads of bands because I couldn't practice at home.  So it was just to play anything I could really with lots of old guys and young guys.  Used to play with this guy that toured Germany in the sixties and that was really bizarre and then eventually after playing with about thirty odd bands I met up with Simon. 

Simon:  There's not a band in Hastings that Russell hasn't played with. 

Charles: That's one thing I've noticed about your web page you mention that he's played in a lot of bands before joining up with you.  It seems like every band that I read about history wise seems to have picked up their drummer from like thirty other bands before that, like their a professional drummer for the most part. 

Russell:  From the gutter, I prefer the gutter. 

Simon:  He's a legend.  Everyone knows him.  You can't walk down the street with him in Hastings and not be stopped by someone who wants to talk to him, touch his feet.  They want him to kiss their babies.

Charles:  Must be a nice break here in the US then. 

Russell:  Yes it is very nice from healing people. 

Charles: Walk around barefoot no one really cares.  So is it nice to have on a musical level..... is it important to have a good background as far as a rhythm.

Simon:  God yeah.  Bass and drums they're vital.  They're vital because that's what people feel.  That's what rocks peoples stomachs and in their chests.  That's what gives you the punch and it's in the attitude.  A good rhythm section, very important.

Charles:  How do the songs themselves come about?

Simon:  How?  Basically as of late I got a computer.  I've been collecting loops and I've been laying down loops.  Either getting some keyboard lines, particularly for the new album which we're going to start recording hopefully when we get back.  Just been getting loops up and laying down keyboard lines and singing over it that way.  Where as before I took the much traditional route with Loser Friendly I was just writing them on the guitar.  Now I've gone, well with this album it's going to be more contemporary and experimental but still kind of poppy and singley sounding.  I like writing catchy tunes that you can hum in your head. 

Charles:  Do you feel like you have to have a certain song style?  Or like a certain pattern when you write?

Simon:  No.  There's no way you can say I'm going to write this kind of song today.  It's whatever you feel like.  I was arguing with someone the other day to say that I don't sit down and say that I'm going to write a single today.  I sit down and say I'm going to write a song today.  I've got just as many bad songs as I've got good songs.  I just enjoy doing it.

Charles:  How does the rest of the band come in together?

Simon:  Well basically I'll demo something up on the computer I can stick it on CDR now because we're all pretty futuristic now.  Used to just play stuff down the phone and say learn it but nowadays I can give people CDRs.  We just get a rehearsal together and just iron stuff out and usually the song turns out completely different as to how I did it on the demo.  But that's how I want it.  I wouldn't want to say well you've got to do it that way and you've got to do that.  A band is about being a unit, about being united.  I just lay the skeleton and the other guys add all the flesh.  I'm just saying that because Ellie is listening and I know she hates the word flesh.  Ellie is our keyboard / violinist player. 

Charles:  Flesh isn't such a bad word.

Simon:  Yeah she's got some problem with it.  Flesh. Can you hear me Eleanor?  Flesh.

Charles:  She's not a puritan is she?

Simon:  I don't know maybe.  I think talking about words we don't like I like finding out words that people do like and my word that I like the most is wobbly. 

Russell:  The word I kind of love and hate is doilie.

James:  I'm a big fan of oblucious. 

Charles:  What does oblucious mean?

James:  No idea.

Charles:  Sounds nice, I'll agree with you.

James:  It does that's why I like it. 

Russell:  So if anyone would like to let us know what your favorite words are....

Simon:  What about you?  What's yours?  Have you got one?  It's tricky I know. 

Charles:  I'd have to think about that.

Simon: Onamonapeic, that's a nice one.

Charles:  It depends on who I'm dating of course.

Simon:  Oh really?

Charles:  Got to be safe.  Speaking of, kind of curious we wanted to play a song from you guys from your latest album.  You wanted to play Cut Me Loose the first track on Loser Friendly.  Can you tell me how this song started?

Russell::  I can remember you playing the riffs and that to us in the rehearsals. 

Simon:  I remember we never actually rehearsed it until we got in the studio.  We just recorded it straight down.  Sometimes that works.  I kind of knew it was going to work really well just me laying the guitar down and everyone building on top of it.  It worked really well and it's probably my favorite track on the album.  I'm a big fan of middle eights and middle eights that do something completely different from the rest of the song and lift you.  Stevie Wonder does that quite a lot.  A lot of bands I really like do that.  This song for me has got one of my favorite middle eights in it. 

Charles:  For those that are not really musically inclined. 

Simon:  Middle eights are.... you've got the verse, you've got the chorus then you've got to spice the song up and make it more interesting.

Charles:  Kind of like a bridge?

Simon:  Yeah that's it bridge basically.

Charles:  For us non musicians.

Simon:  Take it to the bridge.

Charles:  As far as the lyrics.

Simon:  Lyrics are about people that have been inspirations to me.  People that have been kind of what's the word, mentors.

Russell:  But it also came after the deal actually didn't it?  When we broke away from...

Simon:  No that's more Let Down

Russell:  Oh yeah right, of course.

Simon:  But Cut Me Loose is about people that have supported me, guided me and just a sort of thank you to them. 

Charles:  As another thank you we have a cd giveaway.  First person to email me at will win a copy of the CD and of course Ellie does not qualify.  Nothing personal of course but we'll be back in a few minutes with Steadman. 


Charles:  Ok I've failed to put the CD in.

Simon:  It's ok we'll sing. 

(band starts humming and singing)

Russell:  No don't do that.  Actually I'd like to just point out that we went to a water theme park yesterday and some git stole my sandals and I just wanted to actually moan about that now.  Just to get it off my chest.

Simon:  If you're listening you're in big trouble buddy. 

Russell:  I'd been wearing them for nearly seven weeks and I hope you enjoy them. 

Charles:  He stole your sandals?

Simon:  Yeah can you believe that?  They didn't even look good. 

Russell:  I went on this tubey ride this vortex this

Simon: Flume

Russell: Flume yeah.  When I came back my sandals were gone.

Simon:  We had one hell of a day there.

Russell:  Yeah we did.

Charles:  Now where was this?

Simon:  Raging Waters, I don't mean to plug them but...

Russell:  Bit of a rip off though smuggle food in or something.

Simon:  And go there late get there around five because it empties out.  We were there from like one until ten at night.  We hit a lot of water that day.

Charles:  I've never been but I've heard it's great.

Russell: But just make sure you don't put your sandals down carelessly.

Simon:  And the vortex and the speed slide are the best rides.

Charles: Do they have nothing like that in England?

Simon:  Yeah but we don't get much sun.

Russell:  Bloody cold innit?

Charles:  So it's more like an ice slide right?  We are actually going to play the Steadman track right now then.  My apologies and of course if you want to e-mail me first one wins a CD.

(break for music)

Simon: (weeping) It's so sad.

Charles:  You're listening to the Indieshop here on KBeach radio and of course we're beating the hell out of Simon that's why he's crying here.  Actually I think it's the song that's getting to you isn't it?

Simon:  I just love that last line.  Bands and it's funny little plans that never work out right. 

Charles:  Would that happen to be the title of the song?

Simon:  No I don't think so.

Charles:  Anybody know?  Anybody out there know?

Simon:  How about free kiss from the drummer if you can tell us what the name of the song is.

Charles:  That's fine with me.  Of course that means that you would have to show up to the show tomorrow night. 

Russell:  Oh yeah of course.

Simon:  Yeah if he's going to get a kiss he'll fly. 

Charles:  You guys have already gone across the whole country so what's one city right?

Simon:  Oh yeah we're playing at the Mint tomorrow. 

Charles:  Up in Hollywood.

Simon:  Up in Hollywood.  We're going to hope to be discovered for that big movie role.  I'm looking to be an action hero.  

Charles:  You were here about a month ago as well. 

Simon:  Just the three of us, not Russell.  Just me, James and Ellie. 

Charles:  So you did an acoustic gig?

Simon:  Oh no hang on.  We weren't, a month ago we were all here.  I'm talking about the time before that sorry.  I lost track, I've been on tour I just don't know where I've been.

Charles:  This is actually you're third show in the US or in the LA area?

Simon:  Yeah it is. 

Charles:  How do you prepare differently as compared to say performing in studio to doing it live?  Do you add anything?

Simon:  Well obviously in the studio you can layer stuff and you can make it sound more full and rich and in a venue you're more at the mercy of the PA and the sound guy.  Fortunately we brought our fabulous sound guy with us who is a total superstar and knows the way and knows his way around every mixing desk ever invented.  So he sorts us out.  There's not too much preparation.  Russell does transcendental meditation before a show he usually stands on his head for three days.  Other than that most of us just get drunk.

Charles:  Now there you go.  What else did we play just before that.  Prior we played Mercury Rev then we played one of your songs.  One of the things I'm really interested in band wise is what really influenced you guys.  I mean we talked about Crosby Stills and Nash as far as songwriting but what other bands either currently or previously have really interested you? 

Simon:  Go James.

James: Currently?  Personally it's been a lot more of the old stuff that I've been interested in as an influence.  But new stuff there's Radiohead, Mercury Rev they're all good but as an influence I don't know.

Simon:  You like G Love and the Fun Lovin' Criminals though don't you?

James:  Yeah but it doesn't shine through your music. 

Russell: It's kind of weird when we all originally got together because I was having a big jazz time of it when I met Simon.  But I was just sort of getting through it.  I was really into Pat Metheny and stuff before he was really like...

Simon:  Good?

Russell:  He was kind of hard edged when he first started.  Before he met Lyle Mayes and all the keyboards started

Simon:  No one will know who you're talking about.

Charles:  You know we have a jazz station about a block down.

Russell:  OK, see you later guys.  But it was really good because we were all sort of like into different stuff.  That's what was kind of exciting about us all getting together really.  While the bass player is like a big Frank Zappa fan but he also loves the Meters and all that funk stuff.  We're all influenced in different little areas. 

Charles: (to Simon) Yourself?

Simon:  Well I've told you most of mine but I don't really like music that much.

Charles:  Oh ok.  It shows.  That's pretty sad.  It's all for the money.

Simon:  You know it is.

Charles:  Out!  Is it difficult.... I'm not a musician but I imagine myself if I learned the guitar and I try to write a song it would totally sound like something I'm listening to. 

Simon:  It's a difficult thing to do.  Not to do rather.  Which is why I don't really listen to that much music.  If I find something I like I'll play it to death.  Like a Radiohead album, like The The I was talking to you about that earlier.  Jeff Buckley all that kind of ilk of bands that usually their voices go into falsetto mode quite a lot kind of like all that kind of stuff.  I usually just play it and play it and play it until I'm sick of it.  Then I'll wait for something else to come along but not a lot really pushes my boat.

Charles:  So you've kind of made the transition from being a fan

Simon:  That's the other thing is when you've holed yourself up in a studio for hours and hours on end you're so critical of what you're hearing I think personally.  But I've also been getting turned on by a lot of electronic music like Thievery Corporation and Kid Loco and Air as well.  I like that stuff but I wouldn't say it was influential at all.  I do like it.  I don't want to listen for that reason you said about writing stuff like other people have written I don't want to listen to too many guitar based bands.  For that reason really.  It is hard not to fall in that trap where you're writing.  You hear a song you really like and you try to write a song just like it. 

Charles:  I guess one of the things you didn't want to do was play the obvious bands when you played a song.  We're going to kind of move into one of the obvious ones now. 

Simon: (to Russell) What did you choose?

Russell:  Beatles.

Simon:  Nice

Russell:  Not one of their sort of obvious songs though, Fool on the Hill. 

Simon:  Beautiful

Russell:  Which I think is just a great song. 

Charles:  When we come back you guys will perform a few songs.  Of course this is the Indieshop on KBeach radio and we'll be right back and I have the CD in this time. 

(break for songs and a live track No Big Deal)

Simon: (applause in the background) Thank You.

Charles:  It's just getting better and better.  Of course both of these tracks are on Loser Friendly.

Simon:  They are indeed. 

Charles:  Any surprises for tomorrow night?

Simon:  Surprises..... Hopefully Bill Clinton is going to play sax. 

Charles:  Oh, ok.  He's probably here for the Democratic convention anyways.  The secret is out.  There will be thousands of people there. 

Simon:  That's the plan.

Charles:  Can we handle it?

Simon:  I know I can.

Charles:  You guys want to play a couple of more?

Simon:  Yeah why not.  Lets do Whirlwind?

Russell:  Good choice.

Charles:  I agree, one of my favorites.

(break for live track Whirlwind)

Charles:  Of course I'm going to be cutting this up.  Would you guys mind if I  put this on the web page? 

Simon:  Of course not.

Charles:  Ok we're going to have MP3s of these up on the web page in about a week or so for you to download.  Do you mind if I make a request?

Simon:  Nope

Charles:  Do you guys have anything new?

Simon:  I was just going to play you a new one.

Charles: Sweet

Simon:  This is kind of a mellow one.  Very nice called Red.

(break for live track Red)

Charles:  Sweet, very sweet.

Simon:  Thanks.  It's kind of mellow in  here now isn't it?

Charles:  Actually it wasn't as mellow as I expected.

Simon:  Really?  It starts off mellow kind of.

Charles:  I'm terrible with song titles....

Simon:  What did you want to know?

Charles:  The last song on the CD.  Come Alive.

Simon:  I was going to play that for you but we haven't played it for a long time.  We can try it.

(break for live track Come Alive)

Charles:  It's been a while huh?  That was pretty good.

Simon:  Not bad I was making it up as I was going along. 

Charles:  Can I talk you into one more?

Simon:  Ok.  Which one?

Charles:  It's up to you, surprise me.

Simon:  Ok I'm just going to detune it'll just take me a couple of seconds I'm going to do you another new one.

Charles:  Of course you guys are playing tomorrow night at the Mint up in Hollywood.  What time does the show start? 

Russell:  What time does the show start?  That's a good question.

Simon:  Ten o'clock.

Charles:  A voice from beyond told me that.  Now do you have an opening band?

Simon:  Yeah are they called Red?  Yeah they're Red, they're just doing an acoustic I think, that's what I heard. 

James:  Which one are we doing?

Simon:  Early Warning.  Is that bad?  He hasn't got his slide so he's improvising with a coffee mug.

Charles:  Do you want a pen?

James:  That sounds worse actually.

Charles:  Get a picture of that, that's got to go on the web page.  If you could pull that off it's got to go on the web page. 

Simon:  He can.

James:  I've tried this before.

Charles:  How about an aerosol can? 

Simon:  That's quite good it's got a steel tone. 

Charles:  Now what other station brings you this? 

Simon:  Nah the mug was better wasn't it?  It's got a little handle you can hold onto as well.  BB King is going to be following in your footsteps.  This is called Early Warning.

(break for live track Early Warning)

Simon:  Yee Haw!

Charles:  Maybe you guys were in Texas a little too long.  I really appreciate you guys coming in.

Simon:  Thanks very much for having us. 

Charles:  It's been sweet.

Simon:  Yeah really enjoyed it. 

Charles:  Tomorrow night is going to be good I can just feel it.  

Simon:  I hope so.

Charles:  If you are in the Hollywood area, LA area, Southern California area definitely come and check them out.  You guys are going back to the UK after a show in Vegas.

Simon:  Yeah we're going to Vegas.  I mean it's less about the gig and more about partying in Vegas.

Charles:  Of course.  Elvis style.

Simon:  We've never been there before so it's probably going to blow our minds but we're ready for it.

Charles:  Something to tell the family about. 

Simon:  We hear they pump oxygen into the casinos.  We're looking forward to that.

Charles:  I wouldn't doubt it but it's juiced so they've got to keep you gambling.  Back to the UK, work on the new album? 

Simon:  Yep.  We've got a few gigs to do then we're sorting out the album.  It's all written and ready to go we've just got to record it. 

Charles:  Of course everything you guys are up to is on the web page. 

Simon:  Yeah just catch up on all the information about us at

Charles:  The new shows in the UK and so forth.  Janny do you hear that?

Simon:  And we might be coming back in September we're just trying to iron that one out so keep them peeled. 

Charles:  I'm really impressed that you guys are spending so much energy on the US.

Simon: Thanks.  We like it. 

Charles:  Most bands don't have the opportunity to.

Simon:  No that's true.  We're kind of fortunate to be able to get out here and do this particularly not having signed a major deal in order to do it as well 

Charles:  Kind of helps.  So once again thanks.

Band:  Thank you. 

Charles:  Thanks everyone for listening and I will see you next week.  Take care.