Despite having only formed back in June 2018, Manchester based four-piece VELVET SHAKES and their genre transcending sound have wasted no time in establishing themselves amongst the city’s infamous music scene

Here’s what the band had to say when I got the chance to ask them some questions.

How did you all meet? 

“Salford uni. We were all studying music so it was kind of perfect. But don’t get the impression we all met in the library…”

Who were your musical influences growing up?

Josh: “Michael Jackson was my first musical hero. I was sort of obsessed and I idolized him as a kid. Then a few years later my friend introduced me to The Beatles – and I was definitely obsessed with them”.

Scott: “Big Abba fan, still am. Pipe Major Donald Macleod MBE was my bagpiping inspiration. And Motorhead”.

Louie: “Stevie Wonder, The Smiths and Craig David. And nothing else. Still are. No questions. No danger”.

Ant: “Gotta be Oasis and Stone Roses – Manchester innit”.

What has been your best gig? 

“Gorilla. Manchester. 20th December 2019. We supported Crazy P and it was mental. We’d never done a gig of that size before so it was a biggie for us even before we did it. And then we played it. We played in between DJ’s and we were on at about midnight so everyone was well up for it”.

Can you tell us a bit about your music? 

“IT’S MOST CERTAINLY SOMETHING TO SHAKE YE BOOTY TO. But it’s also hopefully something that might make you stop and think every now and then too. Most of it is written by myself. The others chip in when they’re needed too. But most of it is produced on my own in my home studio”.

Can you describe your music in 3 words? 

“Live, laugh, love”.

What makes your band stand out from others? 

“Bright clothes”.

You developed your sound through a shared love for indie, disco and house, how difficult did you find it to find and create your own sound?  

“Looking back on it, it did take time for it all to come together to be honest. I was about 19 and I was listening to a lot of indie music and a lot of house, and I remember thinking it would be cool if we could bind these 2 genres. It did take me a few years for it to come together naturally but it was definitely a natural progression”.

What are your plans for the rest of 2020? 

“We’re quite limited in terms of what we can do as a band. We’ve just released a new track and we can’t gig at the moment of course. We’ve been thinking up some comedy sketches though, just to take the piss out of ourselves for our own entertainment. But if we can put a smile on a person’s face by doing them then that’s a good enough reason to put one out. As always, working on new music will be what I’ll be spending the majority of my time doing. We’re gonna have enough material for a double album by the end of lockdown at this rate…”

By Siân Parker