All having a huge music background the 5 piece decided to get all their knowledge and create their band ‘The Leylines and are ready to take storm in the music industry and perform all over!
Get to know them here!
What are your full names?
Steve Fowell, Matt Wilkins, Hannah Johns, Pete Fealey, James Dyer
What is your band’s Genre?
Mostly Folk Rock, although we have recently been described as Nu-Folk, which we think sums us up quite well!
Give us a little bio of the band and you guys as individuals.
We are a 5 piece band formed and based in Weston-super-Mare in the South West of England. The band was formed midway through 2013 and was born from a desire to create something special and something original. Not to blow our own trumpets or anything, but individually, we can boast some amazing CV entries including playing such stages as Glastonbury Festival, Cardiff International Arena, T4 On The Beach, The London Astoria, The Borderline and many other touring venues around the UK. Also, again, individually, having had music played on all major radio stations and appearing on many TV programmes, it was always going to be a smart move to get us all together. Bringing together our various styles and musical upbringings has enabled us to compound a sound that you will feel totally comfortable with and warm inside when you hear it. When you see us play live, you will want to sing along to every song. It’s been said by many, after hearing our songs, that it is almost as if the song has been written specifically for the listener or someone they know. We’d like to think that it’s because these are stories from the heart…they are true stories which everyone has experienced! We’ve also had the privilege of being labelled as “the perfect festival band”, a label that has been very warmly received as the plan is to play many, many festivals in the coming year and beyond. The journey has only just begun for us, and we are very excited about the road ahead!
Where did you get the band name from?
Matt suggested it – wherever it came from, he’s keeping it to himself, but we like it!
Who does what in the band? I.e. who does the vocals, who plays what, who writes the songs
Steve is our front man, lead singer, guitarist and general rabble-rouser. Matt is our lead guitarist and backing vocals. Hannah plays violin, viola and also add backing vox. Pete and James are the rhythm section, playing bass and drums respectively.
Steve is Chief-In-Charge of writing our material, although the songs usually come more into their own once the rest of us have written our own parts in and jammed them out!
Are You Signed?
Not yet, but who knows what’s around the corner!
How did the band come about?
Steve and Matt have been doing gigs together for years, in various incarnations of bands, doing cover songs, acoustic duos etc, but felt like it was time to actually do something more with Steve’s originals, so they asked about and found Pete and James. Weston is a great place to find musicians – there are so many to choose from and everyone knows everyone else, so we all sort of knew of each other from jam nights and playing in other bands. Hannah was a bit of a pain to get hold of (at first!) because she is a session player as well, so she was involved in a lot of projects at the time, but once they were out of the way we could really get down to getting the violin-led tracks sorted. It’s all just snowballed from there really…
Who are your influences?
We’ve mostly been compared to being the lovechild of The Levellers and The Undertones, which we think is probably the best description we’ve come across so far! Our individual influences span from The Jam, Radiohead, Muse, Seth Lakeman and Ethan Johns (no relation to Hannah!) to name but a few.
What are your backgrounds whether it’s in music or not?
We come from all walks of life. Steve’s experience in the Army has definitely had an influence on his song-writing and it comes through in one of our songs ‘Queen & Country’. The lyrics are based around governments sending soldiers to foreign wars without the proper equipment, support etc, which seems to be particularly resonant at the moment. He and Matt have been playing as a duo for many years before the rest of us came along and they still do! They’re nearly always booked out, often doing 4 or 5 gigs (including ours) a weekend. Hannah’s been playing the violin for 20 years, so her background as a classically-trained violinist comes in pretty handy when we’re writing. James has hit the ground running straight out of college, promoting independent band nights in Bristol – including our own! Pete runs a web design company. He pretty much came up with our band logo and is busy developing our website at the moment. Our age range is a little broader than the average band, which means we can collectively bring our individual gigging experience and industry knowledge together.
How did music come in to your lives and when did you start doing it?
Music’s been a massive part of our lives, some of us from as young as 3 years old, but it was probably in our teens when it started to matter more to do something with it – Show us a teenager who’s never wanted to be in a band and we’ll tell them they’re lying! We were all quite lucky being part of such a close-knit musical community in Weston, so we started doing gigs individually around our late teens/early 20s and here we are, older and wiser for it!
When will you be releasing material?
We already have an EP out ‘Let It Go’, which is available to listen to on our Soundcloud page – http://soundcloud.com/The-Leylines-UK. Alternatively, we have CDs available which people can order from us directly, so feel free to get in touch!
We also have a backlog of tunes which we are choosing from to release an album in the near future…
How do you get inspiration to write songs?
All our songs are based (at least in some part) on our experiences living and growing up in Weston-super-Mare – our friends, family, memories good and bad are all in there somewhere, which we think makes our tunes relatable to people on so many levels. Everyone’s laughed, loved and lost in their lives at some point and we hope our songs reflect this.
Where do you see the band in 2-5 years time?
Doing bigger gigs, seeing more of the world and generally having a blast doing what we love doing – making music!
Where would your dream place be to perform?
Our festival zenith would definitely be one of the main stages at Glastonbury!! It’d be hard to find something that would be able to top that!
If you could do collaboration with anyone who would it be?
There are so many incredible musicians out there; it’s hard to narrow it down to a handful! Needless to say, it would be amazing to team up with The Levellers, but Seth Lakeman, Ethan Johns and Show of Hands are very high up there as well.
If you weren’t doing music what would you be doing?
That’s an impossible question! Who wouldn’t want to do music?!
Do you have a website, social media pages and music pages for your fans?
We are all over the social media! Our website is still under construction at the moment, but in the meantime, people can find us on