Five into two seems to go just fine in the Hey Tourists equation. John and Cheryl’s snappy pop worked a treat as a duo, but as a fully formed group the added muscle suits them just fine.
With support slots for everyone from Babyshambles to The Freelance Whales behind them they are, without doubt, the support act that’s got promotion to the premier league stamped all over them: which will no doubt please former Rascal turned Hey Tourist bassist Joe Edwards a treat.
With a set spiked with instantly memorable indie-pop gems such as Finger On Your Lips and the Caribbean beach-party singalong Miami, Hey Tourists are, erm, going places? Sorry…
So, before all that, some questions. Oh, and a late summer spotify playlist, if you please….
So, why the new, expanded Hey Tourists?
C: It was always going to be a full band thing. We’d been recording all of the songs with that in mind. We love doing small, acoustic gigs but we’ve both been in bands before and need a bit of noise! Plus we’d get bored of each other as a twosome… heehee. At first we just wanted to get out there and test the songs, and how well we worked together. But now it’s much more fun!
It’s changed the sound – but has it changed the dynamics?
C: Yeah a bit. It always will once drums and bass are brought in. I’ve never been in a band with keys/organ before, so it was something a bit different for me. I’m used to being around four boys and how that dynamic can be, I’ve learned not to boss them around so much! This dynamic is much more relaxed and easy. We’ve all been friends for a while but not so close that it isn’t professional. It’s fun but there’s definitely a level of maturity which i thought was impossible to achieve in a band!
J: Obviously, the more people you stick in there, the more the dynamic will change. All for the better though I’d say. They’re all dudes but we’re all focused on what’s best for the band too.
You brew up quite a unique musical stew – there’s a lot going on in a Hey Tourists song. How do they arrive – talk us through your creative genius…
C: I dance around inspiring him to write great songs and then he sits alone for hours with headphones on ignoring the phone or the door bell…
J: Haha. That’s pretty much it.
Liverpool’s music scene right now is….
C: If I’m allowed to say….it’s a bit quiet I think, but there are some great bands really getting involved: Dire Wolfe, Vasco, Bike Thieves. I don’t think we’re doing our bit just yet but we will.
J: Pretty much the same as it has been for many years. There’s always been great bands in Liverpool and now’s no different. I think some people get carried away and say it’s the best it’s been, but as far as I can see it’s as per usual and there’s nothing wrong with that.
Who are your influences?
C: Ours are very different, which is good I suppose. Everything influences me! But to narrow it down, I’ve loved loved The Beatles forever, it doesn’t get much better than them It’s good because John hasn’t always listened to them, so it’s boss watching someone getting new excitement about a song you’ve listened to millions of times, I get a bit geeky about it. I love Francois Hardy’s style, Debbie Harry’s attitude and Diana Ross’ voice!
J: For loads of my songs, music’s just a vehicle to get the creativity out of my body. If I could paint it might come out as a painting. So basically good moods, bad moods and those inbetween. I DJ a lot so I suppose the more I play the tunes the more they creep into my subliminal..
If you’re ‘Vital Pop’ who is ‘Unessential Pop’?
C: Such a big question! Sex on Fire is my worst song ever. It’s horrible.
J: I always stand by the motto – James Blunt’s shit. All the rest is conjecture.
Where do you like/what do you like in Liverpool right now?
C: Mello Mello is nice, we were rehearsing in there last week in the day and a girl was just sat playing the piano, it was lovely! You can just sit there and not care about a thing! I enjoyed the gig at the Shipping Forecast, but I’m still stuck for somewhere to play out in since the Met shut down. It’s left loads of people lost! I like Sefton Park, it’s beautiful and probably the best place in the city.
J: I like Tribeca, I gotta say that cos I DJ there! I’d have to agree with Cheryl about Sefton Park. And Lodge Lane also. Give me Lodge Lane over Lark Lane any day. So much more culture and diversity. And the shops are better too.
What’s next for you?
C: Wait and see, a big change is gonna come!
And your summer Spotify playlist please…
C: Jacqueline Taieb – 7 Heures du Matin
Dizzee Rascal – Dance with Me
CSN – Our House
Rolling Stones – Factory Girl
Koop – Koop island blues
Grateful Dead – Truckin
The Strokes – Someday
J: Ganja Smugglin – Eek – A – Mouse
This Bust Be the Place – Talking Heads
This Time Tomorrow – The Kinks
Let Her Dance – Bobby Fuller Four
Concrete and Clay – Unit 4+2
Red Angel Dragnet – The Clash
Talking Love – John Holt (the SevenStreets elves couldn’t locate this one)