Can you tell me a bit about your band?
Sure! I think the main thing to say is that we are a bunch of friends (with a brother & sister thrown in) who love a good party and if we can create that in a concert then we feel like we’ve come away doing a good thing. We started primarily in the folk world, getting drunk and singing/playing traditional songs and shanties but we wanted to perform original stuff, so the two entities started to merge together. Since its inception, Skinny Lister has hung out with a lot of punk bands, which has definitely rubbed off on our style somewhat. Whilst our music isn’t necessarily punk it’s delivered with that ethos; throw caution to the wind, give it your all and have a good time.
How has your 2019 been so far?
Busy! We actually released our 4th album at the beginning of March and have been touring pretty much ever since. We did our largest ever UK headline tour, then headed over to the mainland to play some of our biggest headline shows there and when all that was done, we headed over to the States to open for The Bouncing Souls on their 30th Anniversary tour of the West Coast, then headed back over to Boston for Frank Turner’s Lost Evenings III which was insane and worth the long long drive across America for! We threw in some headline shows along the way too which were really fun.
You have a new album out, can you tell me about it?
Yes! The new album is called ‘The Story Is…’. It’s essentially a collection of true stories all delivered in a musical style that we felt was right for each track. That means it’s eclectic as hell, but definitely still has the essence of Skinny Lister in there. As the band has matured we’ve become increasingly more adventurous with styles, one to keep it interesting for the listener but also to keep it interesting for us! Plus, in the past, sometimes we’ve been dubious about including a song because we’re not sure if it’s ‘Skinny Lister enough’ – which have then turned out to be fan favourites so yeah, there’s some experimenting with styles in there.
It feels like Xtra Mile and 2000Trees have a special link, how does this feel as an artist on the label?
Definitely. We LOVE the community that Xtra Mile has managed to foster amongst it’s roster. Everyone helps each other out but not only that, it’s great fun hanging out with them. 2000 Trees, for whatever reason just feels like an extension of that. We absolutely love 2000 Trees. Last year, I’d say it was my festival highlight and we’re very much expecting the same from this year too!
Can you tell us anything about your set at 2000Trees?
Err…it’s on Friday before the almighty Mongol Horde. You can expect us to give it our all, playing new tracks & old favourites and we expect the same high energy and involvement that the 2000 Trees crowd gave last year!
How hard will it be to balance a set with an album’s worth of new material?
Yep, as if set lists weren’t hard enough already to decide as a band on! Eyes rolling as I type. Now we have another 14 songs to throw into the mix. Nah, in all the sets we have been doing so far we’ve managed to throw in at least a couple of new ones which have been reacted to really well so we should be fine. No band splits over set lists before 2000 Trees don’t worry!
Do you have any top tips for this year’s line up?
De Staat! I tried desperately to see them live last year and got delayed in traffic so arrived on site just as they hit their last chord. Not going to let that happen this year. But, then of course, there’s all our label mates Frank Turner, Johnny Lloyd, Sean McGowan – and of course Flogging Molly & Grace Petrie. Ahh so many great acts!
There will be people discovering your band at 2000Trees, are there some other records you would recommend?
I’d like them to check out a single from each of our albums, My Distraction, Geordie Lad, Trouble On Oxford Street & John Kanaka. That should give them a good idea of the different stuff we do!
How can we make gigs/festivals a safe place?
I basically joined the band to get into festivals for free. Fortunately over the years I’ve never had a negative experience or even witnessed one. I know I’ve been lucky, especially as I have got myself into some seriously silly states. Take care of each other people! Don’t be a dick. Treat others as you wish to be treated. If someone is in trouble help them out. It could just as easily be you.
You are 2000Trees veterans, what has been your favourite moment to date?
I have to say our show. Sorry I know I should say someone else’s but it really was a highlight in the year for me and that’s saying something as we had a great year last year. The tent was rammed, we had good pals Sean McGowan & Beans on Toast on stage, all our mates kicking about and the sun shone but still loads of people in the tent. Special gig.
Do you have any insider tips for the festival?
Just do you.
What are your festival recovery tips, do you have a favourite restorative recipe?
Shower, sleep, spaghetti Bolognese.
Where we find out more and pick up some records?
You can find most of our stuff on skinnylister.com or for music stuff head to xtramilerecordings.com, itunes, Spotify, Amazon & the like.