It’s been a while since my last ‘Inspire Me’ post but I couldn’t resist posting a recent chat I had with Steve Pearce, music producer, writer, saxophone player and founder member of funk – soul band Brother Strut who formed in 2012, after having played between them, with artists such as Stevie Wonder, Madonna, Robbie Williams, Jools Holland, Christina Aguilera and Amy Winehouse, Al Green, George Michael, Sting, Elton John to name just a few.
Brother Strut have released their debut album – ” The First Strut is the Deepest ” co written with BBC award winning songwriter, Megan Heywood, on which the band also collaborated with emerging talents for the vocals. They are currently touring, having recently performed to sold out venues around the country – and have a London show at the Brooklyn Bowl 02, coming up on December 3rd for which I have 5 pairs of tickets up for grabs. More on that after this interview …
Who and What inspired you to start Brother Strut ?
It was actually a decision based upon trying to find something that combined all the things I liked ! So I wanted to continue to play saxophone, write songs and also produce records. I love funk/soul music of the late 60s and 70s, so I set about putting it all together. First of all I knew I wanted to recruit some of the best guys in the business that were passionate about funk/soul music so I made one song and made some phone calls to put the first session together !
You play a lovely old skool funk and groove – is this the style of music that you all enjoying playing the most ?
I think we all have a varied taste in music but we certainly all share a love of music WITH funk, so not necessarily funk music. So as long as it’s funky, we’ll love it !
As you are all musicians who play with many high profile artists – do you get time to practise together or do you meet for shows ?
Organising rehearsals is VERY hard ! For this current tour we only had one rehearsal the week before as it was the only day we could all do! So we tend to do our homework and then run over the details in sound check if we feel it is necessary to do so !
Have any of you played together before Brother Strut ?
I know Frankie and Steve ( Bass ) paths cross occasionally on recording sessions but, never in a permanent band.
Is your line up a fixed or do you change sometimes ?
Pretty much fixed as the 5 – piece but we have recently added Mary Awere on backing vocals and also Karl Vanden Bosche on percussion and these are great additions !
How many shows do you do a year? Where do you enjoy playing the most ?
Well, we are a brand new band ! Our first gig was only back in April this year, and last night was our 10th show ! So we are growing and building at the moment. The band following has been built entirely online via Facebook advertising and marketing. So our videos were popular long before we had all done a gig together, which made selling the gigs a little easier !
Currently our audiences are around 300 people at a show and we’re looking to grow and build this year on year. Ideally we are looking to do two tours a year, one in the spring and one in autumn / winter.
What is coming up for Brother Strut ?
After this tour, I’m going to take 2 months out to concentrate on writing the new album. We all can’t wait to get back in the studio !
Thanks to Stevie for sharing some of his inspirations. I will be at the Brooklyn Bowl gig ! If you would like to enter yourself to win a pair of tickets for their London show on December 3rd, you can do so in two ways:
1. Leave a comment under this post letting me know you would like to attend the gig on December 3rd.
2. Tweet the following:
I’ve entered the @lucylovesyablog giveaway to win 2 tickets to see @brotherstrut on Dec 3rd at @BBowlLondon – 5 pairs up for grabs!
You can do both – to be entered twice.
T’s and C’s
This is a tickets only prize. No accommodation or travel supplied.
No cash alternative, alternative date or prize offered.
Winners will be picked at random on Sunday 30th November at 7pm. I will notify all by email and will require a response within 24 hours or will have to re – select.
Good luck – if you’d like to watch Brother Strut at work in the meantime – have a look at some of their videos and have a cheeky little dance while you’re at it !