George Holroyd Interview

George blog

George Holroyd is a singer-songwriter who was brought up in Suffolk but moved to Nottingham for university. Whilst living up here as a student he’s made quite a name for himself in the city's music scene. He’s been a part of some great Acoustic Rooms line ups, following in the footsteps of Jake Bugg and Saint Raymond and he’s also had some great slots at several festivals including Dot to Dot, Splendour and Glastonbury. This Friday, George is releasing his debut EP Peru and his launch party is right here at The Bodega. We had a few words with him in the build up to the launch.

What should we expect from the new EP?

The EP is a bit of a mixed bag really, they’re all acoustic songs but each have a different influence and sound to them, which was a bit unintentional but I think it works quite nicely. I’ve waited a long time to release an EP as I wanted to be sure it was exactly what I wanted (there was also a bit of faffing around too), and I think these 4 songs are my favourites so far.

Where did it get recorded?

I recorded it in Newbury at Studio 91 with Sam Winfield, a great guy and a seriously, seriously good producer who’d been recommended to me by Joe from Amber Run. I’d never spent much time in the studio before and had never recorded any of my originals so wasn’t really sure what to expect, but he made it very easy and somehow got me to play in time with a click track (for the most part!).

Do you have a favourite song on the EP?

My favourite is Howl, but Peru turns into a nice medley with one of my favourite ever songs live which is always a lot of fun to play. What do you like about playing gigs in Nottingham? I really like how responsive the audiences are, and the general culture of going out to see some live music that is present everywhere throughout the city. On any given night you’ll have a choice of loads of venues putting on a show, and they’ve always pulled in a crowd, which is a great opportunity as a performer.

What’s been your favourite gig to play so far?

I actually have two in recent memory that have been pretty unforgettable. Firstly playing to the fully packed Rescue Rooms bar in the late afternoon at Dot to Dot last year was fantastic, such a good atmosphere! My hands took a battering though.. Secondly was a more recent gig for Sofar Sounds in a living room just up the road from me in Lenton, it was fully acoustic and a bit daunting as it was much more intimate than I’ve played before, but was a lot of fun. There’s a video from that airing soon on YouTube!

You’re originally from Suffolk, how does the Nottingham music scene compare?

Well the sheer scale of the Nottingham scene is fantastic because there are more opportunities to play here (and to a larger audience in general), but my local music scene back at home is very good and there are a lot of people in the area who play and put on gigs, the amount of venues is just lesser.

You're still currently studying. How do you find splitting your time between music and university work?

It’s been pretty stressful at times but I’m nearing the end of my degree now, playing and going to gigs has been a great way to spend an evening after a day doing uni work and I’ve made some great friends through it outside of university. Dot to Dot is always a bit touch-and-go as it falls in the middle of exam time, I just have to pray there’s no exam the Monday (and generally Tuesday..) after!

Are you looking forward to this Friday's launch?

I really am, I’m itching to play again and I can’t wait for the full EP to finally be out for people to listen to. I’ve also got a lot of friends from all around the country coming to watch so it’ll be great to see everyone and catch up with them afterwards! You can expect a lot of energy, I’ll be playing the EP and other originals with a few covers thrown in for good measure. Afterwards? Some interesting dance moves at Pop Confessional..

Tell us a bit about your three support acts?

I first saw Connor Spray at Acoustic Rooms about 18 months ago when he did a cracking cover of “Waiting for the Rapture” by Oasis as part of a great set. The originals he has written since are fantastic and I love his stage presence, he puts a lot of energy into his performance which I really like, as well as being a top bloke. Make sure you get down early for him on Friday. Molly and Jack are two of the nicest people you will ever meet, with harmonies to match. They do so much with just two voices and a guitar onstage, and have written some lovely songs over the past few years (my favourite is “Empty Streets”). Molly is a Fleetwood Mac fanatic and they did a cover of “Dreams” last time I saw them that blew me away, I can't wait to watch them play again. I’ve played so many gigs with Cheshire and the Cat over the last 3 years around Nottingham (in pubs, clubs, houses, street corners..) it wouldn’t have felt right to not have them here, their lineup seems to have changed every time I see them but they continue to churn out their unique brand of rock/swing/ska/jazz (I’m not really sure what to class it as, but it certainly makes you get up and dance) with every performance. No party is complete without them.

Tickets for George's EP Launch on Friday are available here.