A Q&A with Skinny Living
Back to their original name, here’s Ryan from Wakefield’s indie-soul success story…
What’s the title of your latest release, and what does it mean to you?
‘Who Likes’, it is a song celebrating the beauty and diversity of the feminine spirit. The idea for the song sparked at a jam night in a Yorkshire pub where a girl danced on the table before trying to take a mic and sing with the band. In front of us was this fiery confident girl demanding attention and at the very same time on the other side of the room there was a quiet, blasé, laissez-faire kinda girl avoiding the limelight. This moment inspired the song’s lyrics while the charisma of the people in the pub on that night gave it its energy. This song breathed a breath of life into our music and we are glad it came along when it did
What was the hardest part about putting this release together, and why?
Funding and promoting it. We released this song completely independently so we had to find the money ourselves to pay for everything needed to get it out there. It’s been hard but very rewarding and successful! We entered the Official Downloads chart for the first time at No53.
Who produced the release – what did they bring to it?
It was co-produced by Eg White and Rich Cooper. Two amazing guys that have helped us define our recorded sound and brought to life our natural sounds and abilities on a record.
What do you want the listener to take away from listening to your music?
We want people to feel uplifted by our music, freed from whatever weight is on their shoulders or compelled to face their troubles and come out on the other side stronger. This is what music has done for each of us through our lives. We also want to represent where we come from and the reality of life, both high and low for people like us
How does a track normally come together? Can you tell us something about the process?
Almost everything we write is first built on acoustic guitar or a vocal melody and lyric. Sometimes a piano replaces the guitar but only when we are near one. The acoustic guitar is just so handy and it’s always there to turn too if we feel something. Who likes sparked from a simple base line that I was playing around with on an old acoustic, then Eg started jamming along with the drums. It clicked immediately. It’s one of those songs that was written in just a few hours. Once the drums were down we added strings and a synth to add some more life to the track. It was a fun one to create
What band/artists have influenced you the most since you started this project, and why?
Soooo many! We love soulful and bluesy music, mostly old school stuff to be honest, like Bill Withers, Sam Cooke, The Beatles, The Stones. Recently however Joy Crookes has been a go to! She’s doing it better than anyone else right now. That tune ‘When You Were Mine’ is immaculate, the production and writing is top class! We love Paolo Nutini’s music too. Amy Winehouse… Honestly there’s too many to mention.
What countries would you like to tour? Are there any standout venues you’d like to play in?
America, Australia and New Zealand for sure! We get so many messages from these countries asking us to come over and as soon as we can afford to we will be there! To play the Ulster Hall in Belfast would be a dream for me. It’s not massive but it would be a proper moment in our career to achieve. To sell out Elland Road stadium in Leeds would be unreal too! Imagine! When that happens we’ve made it!
If you could pick one track for our readers to listen to in order to get a taste of your music, what would you pick, and why?
It has to be ‘Who Likes’. We’ve spent years trying to get our produced sound right and it feels like on this track we have arrived! We will be revisiting some of our older songs down the line too but, like we mentioned earlier, you need to hear us acoustic also.
What ambitions do you have for the band/your career?
We aim to become a household name in the band’s home town Wakefield and spread the word through the rest of the UK, then the world. We want to get as far up the charts with our debut album as possible and to be in a position to make music for as long as we want without ever being forced to pack it in.
Finally, as you leave the stage, what are your parting words?
Thank you for coming out to see us… Good night x.
For more info visit: skinnyliving.co.uk