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Pete Bailey

 

I have loved a lot of music over the years the most influential (but not exhaustive) in my own chronological order would read

Bach, Mozart, Vivaldi, Iron Maiden, Motörhead, Metallica, Marillion, The Cardiacs, Pink Floyd, Hawkwind, Gong, Ozric Tentacles, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Van Halen, Guns & Roses, Steve Vai, Jethro Tull, Wolfstone, Fairport Convention, Levellers, Leatherat

I played piano in my mums front room, played clarinet in the school orchestra, played guitar in a blues rock band at college, sang in a glam metal band in London, played drums in a folk rock band at work and then ………….jacked it all in when my kids were born and that was the end of my music career.

 

However fast forward 10 years and a chance simultaneous encounter with my wife and a music shop led to possession of a shiny new Yamaha acoustic guitar and a resurgence in enthusiasm for playing again. A couple of years later and having moved to Banbury a similar encounter with a music stall at Fairport Convention’s Cropredy Festival led to possession of a shiny new mandolin and that was when it properly kicked off.

I started writing songs and tunes and discovered a love of acoustic music, which until then I had largely ignored, and started a weekly acoustic jam session in the Flyer Banbury (RIP) this led to meeting several local nutters musicians and a chance to try out some of my shiny new songs with my shiny new mandolin.

With overly enthusiastic optimism the accumulated nutters and myself set sail on a voyage of discovery on the high seas of the music industry. An experience akin (I imagine) to crossing the Atlantic in a pedalo while carrying a cargo of lead and irritated Siberian tigers.

In clichéd terms there have been some ups and downs and we have been on a wing and a prayer but at the end of the day, the bottom line is, we’re all singing from the same hymn sheet and now there is light at the end of the tunnel!!

Since then I have had the honour of playing on the same stages as some of the very musical heroes I have listed above (Nick Turner’s signature is still on my amp head) as well as the privilege of playing with the rest of the lads in the band, past and present and I owe a great debt to all of them for helping to make my dreams come true. (and also for reigning me back when my ideas become too flamboyant !)

I have tried to blend all of my influences into my song writing in different ways some successful (some not so much :-D ) and as a band we have attempted to include the skills and influences of all the members in everything we do. The new album, our 4th studio release, is due out in April 2012 and it promises to be as diverse as our interests and inspirations and our best offering yet. I have never been more excited about music in my entire life than I am right now!!

It is truly humbling for us to know that Leatherat is bigger than the sum of its parts and that my dear reader is thanks to you. I also have to credit Paula Bailey, Brett Nicholls, Tim Durham, Kev West and Richard Reese for their parts in putting Leatherat where we are today and lastly but most importantly to Andy Shaw for his companionship over the years and introducing me to Folk Rock and Cropredy without which Leatherat would never have existed.

 

And so in summation I’ve been a

 

Drop out stoner

Corporate whore

Angelic choir boy

Proud Father

Backstage luvvie

Union Representative

Site engineer

Dreadlocked blacksmith

Foolish drunkard

 

But my proudest achievements have been my music and my kids


Now then I’m hogging the conversation, this is all about me, let’s talk about you, tell me about your mother…………