Vinnie & The Stars 2013 RoundUp
What an amazing year 2013 was for Vinnie & The Stars! Here’s are a round up of some of the highlights. (In no particular order)
We released our second album Punkological Business, Which features the singles “I’m not from America… I’m from Hull” & “4 or 5 Canner”
We supported GOLDIE LOOKIN CHAIN at Fibbers, York. Played 3 amazing shows supporting Blackbeards Tea Party. As well as a couple of acoustic shows with Alistair Griffin, And many many more fantastic gigs and festivals.
I MC’d the Area 2 Wold Top Stage and Area 2 session on the main stage at Beverley Folk Festival. I also performed and ran song writing workshops at the festival .
I performed in front of hundreds of Hull City AFC fans at the City Till We Die public meeting bringing awareness to the #NoToHullTigers campaign, which we also featured on BBC Look North and Sky Sports News with a clip of my performance.
I Performed live sessions on BBC Radio Humberside’s The David Burns Show, and Vinnie & The Stars performed a full band live session on BBC Radio Humberside’s Introducing show with Alan Raw.
I also celebrated 1 year of running open mic nights at The Red Lion, Merchantgate, York. As well as booking regular acoustic gigs at various pubs including monthly gigs at The Snickleway Inn, and The Yorkshire Terrier.
I went busking to see if I could earn enough money to buy some new shoes and made a short film/documentary about it.
There where so many special things happen in 2013 for us which we are so pleased to have experienced. We also massively increased our fan base which was evident from album sales and ticket sales for our major gigs! This was a fantastic achievement. We appreciate the support from everyone who has enjoyed our music through 2013.
And the great news is we have our eyes, hearts, and minds set on progressing even more in 2014. We have started the early stages of recording a new album, no title or release date is decided yet but all the songs have been decided, demo recorded, and the early stages of studio recording them are set in to motion. We’ll be looking for some more major support slots, summer festivals, and looking to arrange a UK summer tour. Things will be kicking off from March I can assure you that, and as soon as a few things are confirmed I’ll be announcing some amazing news!!!
For now, keep following us on all our social networks, sign up to our mailing list, enjoy our music, and do all this via our website www.vinnieandthestars.com
If you haven’t already we’d love it if you could have a listen to our album Punkological Business on our website and if you enjoy it order a CD online or download the album, If you have the album share it with your friends and encourage others to purchase it. All funds raised from Punkological Business album sales have furthered the progression of Vinnie & The Stars and our equipment, and we are looking to continue with sales to fund the next album rather then using a pledge or kick starter campaign. So please show your support and check out our album Punkological Business, or even our 2009 album Swings & Roundabouts if you don’t have that one in your collection.
Thanks again, Peace & Love! Vinnie & The Stars
I’m from Hull, The Northern Thing Polarises People
Recently I’ve been sending my music out to a number of UK radio stations in search of air play, In particular for my band Vinnie & The Stars single “I’m not from America… I’m from Hull” One reaction from a radio station producer was…
“Honesty being the best policy - we don’t like it very much, I’m afraid. Also, the Northern thing polarises people I think.”
I find this comment quite disturbing. Then it dawned on me that a mass of my favorite bands and songwriters from all over the world have wrote songs about our capital city London, which have been filling radio stations airwaves for years. Immediately I think of “London Calling” by The Clash, Then I think of a favorite songwriter of mine Jamie T who puts endless amounts of London references from street names to tube stations in his songs. Then a few more artists who have sung about London spring to mind, and they just keep on coming… The Streets, The Kinks, Billy Bragg, Ed Sheeran, Warren Zevon, Ian Dury, Pet Shop Boys, T-Rex, Elvis Costello, The Jam, Madness, Lilly Allen, Adele, and the list could go on and on.
So why is it that we can reel song after song off about the capital city that can be deemed suitable for radio and not bring attention to a north south divide in music and people. But a radio show producer can claim that northern content in a song can polarize people.
I think of one of my favorite albums of all time ever “London 0 Hull 4” by The Housemartins they must have had reason to come out with such a title to knock the capital city and make a stand for northern music. The Housemartins claimed to be the 4th best band from Hull and the title is actually a reference to their claim there are 0 good bands from London and 4 from Hull. Did this album create the bitterness towards northern music and divide the north from the south, It was released in the middle of Thatchers reign where a great divide was also taking place in industry.
Then I think of The Beatles, They predated The Housemartins and came from the north aswel. Did their songs ever polarize people? What about “Only A Northern Song” by The Beatles? The more I think about it, I come to the conclusion that, although there are a lot more songs about London, then there are about the whole north of England, broadcast on radio, this comment about my song is simply one comment off one human being. And it just proves that even in the music industry today their still must be some kind of north south divide remaining.
But at the end of the day “I’M NOT FROM LONDON… I’M FROM HULL” so I’ll also take influence from my southern musical influences choice to sing about where they are from in their southern accents, and make it my choice to sing about where I’m from in my northern accent.Listen to Vinnie & The Stars single “I’m not from America… I’m from Hull” and watch the music video on the website www.vinnieandthestars.com
Punkological Business is not only the new album by my band Vinnie & The Stars, It also marks a serious turning point in my life. A decision to turn my life around and embark on a career of full time music. A chance to express myself and go my own way, with the help of “The Stars” and a few others of course.
In the build up to the release of the album I quit my 70 hour a week job as a delivery man lugging kitchen furniture and appliances across the UK and into peoples houses. Before leaving my job I moved to York and saved enough money to buy the musical equipment I needed, and to see me by for a few months while I establish a way to pay the rent.
I found myself out there with my guitar, my voice, and my band. I quickly learnt enough cover songs to see me by, getting the odd Friday or Saturday night gig to make some money. As luck would have it I also found two pubs in York city center willing to take me on and give me a shot at running my own open mic night. Every Thursday at The Rose & Crown, Lawrence Street, and soon after Every Sunday at The Red Lion Merchantgate.
After a steady start, Six months down the road I’ve built up a good reputation on the gig circuit, A great atmosphere, crowd, and ever increasing amount of performers at both my open mic nights. Things are going well.
Then came the release of the album Punkological Business which I’d been working on since just after the release of my debut album Swings & Roundabouts in 2009. Now it’s time to really kick things off. So far the promotion has been going great, we’ve had support from local BBC Introducing shows on Radio Humberside, and Radio York, David Burns (BBC Radio Humberside Hull City AFC commentator and morning show host) as well as support from BBC 6 Music’s Tom Robinson who spoke very highly of the single “I’m not from America… I’m from Hull” quoting “John Peel would have adored it” live on air. And of course the fantastic Fox’s Den Show on Market Weightons Vixen 101.8 fm.
The band have been booked for a number of UK summer festivals to support the release of the album, where we’ll be performing a new live set consisting of mostly songs from Punkological Business. Which I’m really looking forward too, as the last three years we’ve spent gigging Swings & Roundabouts across the UK. Our first gig of 2013 will be on Saturday 6th April Supporting one of our favorite bands Blackbeards Tea Party. I’m absolutely buzzing with excitement about this gig and really looking forward to kicking it live.
For a full biography on the band, live listings, music videos, links to listen to and purchase all my music, links to social networks and some free downloads check out my bands website www.vinnieandthestars.com
Peace & Love for now, I hope you look forward to my next blog as much as I am looking forward to blogging about summer festivals, love for music, great artists and musicians I meet on my travels and other things I find interesting that I feel the need to share with you.