Introducing Joe Symes and the Loving Kind, a four piece acoustic rock band from Liverpool.
Originally a solo musician, Joe Symes found the need to recruit more musicians for his cause and what followed were a string of gigs and performances leading up to their well received self-titled first album.
The band recently took some time out to answer some questions unZined posed to them about about their beginnings, their experience making their first album and their success internationally. Check it out below.
unZined: A big thank you for taking the time to answer some questions. Firstly, introduce Joe Symes & the Loving Kind
Colin White: I’m Colin, drummer, backing vocalist, and ideas man.
Joe Symes: I’m Joe, Singer/Songwriter, Guitar and Harmonica
Paul Hetherington: I’m from Liverpool and I play guitar.
Chris Giblin: I’m Chris and I play Bass
unZined: Joe Symes was originally a solo artist, and then became Joe Symes & the Loving Kind. Tell us the story of how Joe Symes solo artist started out and why creating a band afterwards made sense.
JS: I was playing acoustic gigs around Liverpool & the North West for about 8 months. Colin who I have known for many years asked could he play bongo’s alongside me at the gigs to which I was I said yes, We then tried out different band members to which didn’t really fit in then Paul & Chris joined and it’s been great ever since.
CW: Yeah, it all came together quite quickly, as I remember. So much in such short a time.
CG: I heard the lads we’re looking for a bass player so I got in touch, and here we are now
unZined: Influences by bands/artists when growing up define how today’s artists mould their own style and sound and can also provide an insight into the bands music. What is each of your influences when it comes to music?
PH: I like a lot of 70’s rock, early blues guitarists and good old 50’s rock n roll.
CG: This is one of those questions I’ve been asked a lot, and to be honest there is no real answer. I am into a lot of different types of bands, and what answer I say now could change next week depending on my mood. There are obviously bands which I listen to regardless and always will, but I suppose I like music that’s got a beat through it, something that makes your foot tap if you know what I mean
JS: I’ve been asked this question so many times, I like a lot of music to which I would be here forever saying who they all were, I love The Beatles, The Doors, The Who, Buzzcocks, The Stranglers, Motown, Frank Sinatra, so many other band’s & solo artists also.
CW: I’d be here all day literally, but to name some drumming influences, I’d say John Densmore, Ringo, Gene Krupa, Art Blakey, Daru Jones, all the Motown drummers, Earl Palmer, to name a few.
unZined: I pose this question to every band as it involves a certain type of creativity to answer. Using only three words how would you choose to describe Joe Symes & the Loving Kind?
CG: Tomorrows sonic journeymen
CW: Real, classic, awesome.
unZined: Who writes the songs you perform and what is the song writing process?
JS: I’m the songwriter, but we all have an input to the finished songs.
PH: On occasion Joe will have a clear idea in his head of guitar parts and sometimes it’s a completely blank canvas. We’re always bouncing ideas off each other though; sometimes a song takes shape quickly and other times it grows over several weeks of jamming.
CG: Yeah like Joe said, he comes in with a song and then as a band we input our own parts to come up with the finished article
unZined: What is the song you bring out during your set which is a sure crowd-pleaser?
CW: Oh, it depends on the night.
JS: They are all crowd-pleasers, but the main one is Fallen Down which we have been ending our set on, we jam it out longer than the original version, a lot like The Doors when they did a long version of one of their songs.
CG: Yeah Fallen Down I’d say. I think, and the others may correct me here, that out of all the different combinations of songs we play for different gigs, that one has been in the most!
PH: Fallen Down as Joe says but perhaps one day we’ll play the shorter album version again.
unZined: There has been major interest across the pond (USA) in the band and your music since your debut album, some from well known celebrities. What do you attribute to that kind of reaction and popularity?
CW: I guess it means we’re doing the right thing. We have the right ingredients.
CG: Hard to say really, I guess they just see something in the music they like, not going to argue with them ha!
PH: I think the novelty value of a good old British band still carries some weight over there and they can’t get enough of our ‘odd’ accents.
JS: I’m very pleased that we are getting the reaction from that side of the pond also around the world with well known celebrities buying our music, really happy I am.
unZined: What did you learn in your experience creating your debut album that will affect the process in making subsequent albums?
JS: That you have to do a lot of pre-production work on the track before you enter the studio otherwise you will be sitting there with the clock ticking and money being wasted, something which we did not do.
PH: Sounds corny but work together as a team and it can’t hurt to try out new ideas.
CG: It’s worth getting it right, so not to just settle on something that’s ok, put the time and effort in so you can come out with something that you are proud of. If you’re not 100% happy with, how can you expect other people to be 100% happy with it
unZined: Is there anyone you would like to acknowledge for helping out with the band?
CG: Yeah, everyone involved in the making the album, but also the fans of the band who come out and spend their hard earned money to see us, they help more than anyone I’d say, as its them who make you want to continue making music
CW: Again, we could go on forever, but every single person who believes in us. They know who they are.
JS: Everyone that was involved in the making of our debut album have all been credited on the inside sleeve, A big thanks to all of them again.
unZined: Have you got any funny/memorable gig stories?
CW: I remember being in London, and Chris – who is an early riser – said to me when I just woke up that he’d just done “a very Dad thing,” which was basically going for a cup of coffee, a walk, and a paper. Very random.
JS: Playing a small weekend tour of London with Alt J & Block Party, going to Abbey Road Studio’s, and not really getting any sleep.
PH: Our introduction from Beatles promoter Sam Leach was pretty memorable, oh and Colin’s unwillingness to cross Abbey Road is always funny.
CG: ha, not sure I can say without a lawyer present! But if there’s beer and shopping trolleys involved, something always going to happen!
unZined: Do you feel social media is a necessity when getting the word around about the band?
PH: Yes, you have to promote yourselves as much as possible, that’s an effective and inexpensive way but of course don’t forget you have to have the songs to back it up.
CG: I do, but I think society is starting to come full circle again. I mean Social Media is a fantastic tool, but people have become too reliant on it over the past few years, something I’m seeing more and more of is scenes starting to develop, and that’s only happening through being away from your computer or social media sites, so a balance of both to me is more of a necessity
JG: 100% but also mixing with other band’s and going to watch other band’s play and support your local scene.
unZined: Do you have any advice for any local bands starting out on the music scene?
CG: Enjoy it!
CW: Play, get to know people, get yourself out there, and avoid “no people” at all costs.
JS: Believe in what you do and never give up.
PH: Don’t just stick to local venues, push yourselves and travel the country gigging and promoting yourselves.
unZined: What does 2015 hold for Joe Symes & The Loving Kind?
CG: Needing more lawyers!
PH: To keep doing what we love.
JS: New songs, recording, bigger gigs, more interviews and having a great time.
CW: Yes, another great year, not forgetting those lawyers. Ha!
A very insightful interview, one that tells us much about the band and what motivates them. Jo Symes and The Loving Kind are guests on Halton Community Radio this Sunday at around 7.30pm with host Iain Tinsley and are starting their gig tour next Friday at The Magnet in Liverpool before playing for our very own band night at the Bridge View in Runcorn on the 28th February. Get involved!
Their album can be found and listened to below. Its a great album overall and definitely worth checking out.
Like what you hear? To follow, listen to and find out more about Joe Symes and The Loving Kind check out the links below:
unZined, an offshoot of Little Indie Night, a night aimed at hosting what is becoming one of the best live music events in the Northwest, has been given free run to find local talent, find out a bit more about what makes them tick and spread the word around to promote local music. If you are interested in being featured or know of any musicians/bands, contact us here or email Mal at firstname.lastname@example.org