About this Playlist
You probably won’t hear any straight rock or generic pop music on the playlist, It’s as much influenced by classic blues and rock as 80’s pop and electro, 90’s house and indie rock, 70’s soul and disco, 60’s jazz and R&B.
Human rhythms not algorithms are how the songs are selected as they are a product of what went before and what I listen to in the present, my years of musical experiences and how this particular sound is now expressed.
“Impeccable selection this – actually my favourite kind of music; funky without being funk, soulful and uplifting. Love it” Nick Faber artist and label owner of Fabyl Records.
“Some amazing tunes on this playlist” Smoove, artist, DJ, producer with Smoove & Turrell and Wack Records.
Tell us about yourself, some background on the band, when and how did you get into music.
Twelve Caesars came into being when Andrew met Steve, the in-house producer at Parklands Studio where Andrew went to record an EP with his group, ‘Candystash’ about 8 years ago. But put all that on hold for a brief interlude….previous to hooking up with Andrew, Steve completed numerous tours of America playing Hammond organ, bass, Blues harp and production with Hobe and Denzil. After a stint in the studio concept duo, ‘The Julie Band ‘, Steve returned to the UK and continued to write music that ended up in ‘The Shrink Is In’, ‘Cruel Intentions 2’, ‘College Road Trip’ and ‘The In Crowd’. After the initial hook up with Steve, Andrew left the music industry and became a stand-up comedian touring the U.K and being part of the Edinburgh Fringe until the lure of the studio beckoned once more where Steve and Andrew recorded and released their ‘While Stars Collide’ album in 2021.
What was your musical journey before this release and how you came together with Ramrock records
To arrive at the point of this release has been slightly circuitous – an introduction via Soundcloud in 2019, the delivery of the original track and a lengthy wait for the North Street West gang to get into the studio to remix, closed for nearly a year due to COVID. But, like all great plans, it’s come together beautifully, and the results are far beyond everyone’s initial expectations. The original version features Andrew’s driving vocals and big, punchy guitar chords and Steve’s confident production delivered with an indie rock sensibility. The North Street West crew come in with their New Radical guns blazing ready to take on the Summer of Love ’22 with their extra horn propulsion, Darren Morris on additional keyboards and bass over an incessant beat – if you never got ‘mad for it’ or raved until the sun came up, you’ll be rapidly inducted via this remix.
How have you kept busy during the last year or so, has the pandemic stifled your creativity or has the time allowed you to experiment more with your sound.
I never stop writing songs – the recording process has been stymied – but that’s all.We managed to work around the restrictions in the first instance and they’ve been largely lifted now
What’s the inspiration behind ‘Swan Fendered Mercury’ and the sound you’ve created?
I used an alternate guitar tuning dreamt up by either Nick Drake or Joni Mitchell – can’t remember which – I’ll happily credit both with being an inspiration. Musically, I had ‘If 6 Was 9’ by Jimi Hendrix and ‘Get It On’ by T-Rex going on in a big way at the time of recording. The song title came from a book that I was reading. Accordingly, ‘Swan Fendered Mercury’ is dedicated to the memory of Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author of ‘A Bright Shining Lie’, Neil Sheehan.
What does 2022 look like for the band, your hope and dreams, exciting future plans, new releases, tours or gigs.
There are plans for a follow up single called ‘California Sleaze’ – inspired by a old traditional song first recorded by Blind Willie Johnson.Thereafter, I’m looking forward to putting out our 2nd album, which has the working title ‘Born To An Empire’ – which is taken from a song lyric on the debut album ‘While The Stars Collide’
Tell us about a classic track, something that has inspired you or just one you love and never get sick of listening to.
Doubt by Mary J. Blige, great lyricists like Smokey Robinson, Mick Jagger, Kurt Cobain, Billie Eilish – have a way of cutting through and getting to something elemental, I think. Brevity is the essence of wit, and all that, I love this song because it unfailingly makes me emotional and I can’t quite work out why. Empathy / texture / dynamics / melody – pop’s base metals.
Can you recommend any new music, something that you have just discovered or are just really digging at the moment.
There are so many great artists around at the moment.
Arlo Park, Mdou Moctar, Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers, Sam Fender, Little Simz.
I loved the Ray BLK debut album last year – 4 years in the making and well worth the wait.
For pure emotion, though, I’d have to make my pick, Fontaines DC.
Do you think playlists are important, what’s the future of the playlist.
I listen to music on compact disc or vinyl- I’m so 20th Century, it’s painful!
Thankfully the Ramrock team love a playlist, so he’s a great one of the bands musical influences
How do you prefer your music to be heard? Streams, downloads or physical product sold. Why?
Physical product sold – compact disc is the best mass produced sound quality I’ve found so far.
What’s the best way a fan can help you today? If they had a spare ten minutes – what is the best thing they could do to help you.
Ten minutes should be just about enough time to get a listen to the new single and any one of the North Street West remixes available now on Ramrock Red.
What would you be doing right now, if it wasn’t for your career in music?
I left a stand up comedy career to get back into music – I guess I’d still be doing that.The 20 / 30 / 40 minutes you spend in front of a live comedy audience is without prejudice and a joyous experience.That said, it wasn’t my calling – making music is.