What is your name?
How did you come up with Wills and The Willing?
It was born out of putting together a band who were wanting to do something different to what they knew and ‘willing’ to stand out and not be your typical band.
What is your genre of music?
It’s hard to put a single genre, chosen labels would be Spoken Word, Urban Fused Rock, Folk, World Music,
Give us a little bio about you.
I cant do little, story to long it has taken a life times journey and still have not reached the starting line !!!
Emma rest over to you !!!
Ok – here’s what I have from Soundcloud…
In late 2004 Ian formed Wills & The Willing and it was in October of 2005 that Janice Long started to champion the band, when she played the single “21st Century Love Song” on her highly regarded and popular Radio 2 program.
By the Summer of 2006, the band was enjoying strong national radio and media support, and was playing at festivals across the UK, including the much loved and highly respected Guilfest.
In 2007, Ian reformed his band, Wills & The Willing, bringing in musicians and friends that he had long admired to record the second album “Heroes & Villains”- the new line up consisted of Ian, Sean Genockey and Charlie Morton, plus part time members The Adj & John Tills, (Kubb, Paolo Nutini, Jamie Lawson). They released their first single “Skin”, which featured Didier Drogba and Michael Essien. “Skin” was used as part of the football anti racist “Kick It Out” Campaign.
Wills & The Willing went on to release the second single “Lipstick” to critical acclaim in 2008, featuring the Mercury Prize nominated (Tom McRae) .
Wills & The Willing went back on the road with the new line up in anticipation of the release of “Heroes And Villains”- they played Guilfest, the Isle of Wight music Festival, The Royal Albert Hall and live sessions at Radio 2.
Sadly, just as they were due to embark on a full UK tour, calamity struck as Ian was rushed to hospital and spent two years in and out of hospital during his recovery process – which resulted in “Heroes And Villains” not being commercially released.
In September of 2012, Ian, Sean, Charlie & John started working on the third Wills & The Willing album, “Dream In Colour”, which was recorded at the legendary Rockfield Studios, Wales and at South London’s Black Dog Studios.
Introduce your band.
Sean Genockey Producer, Engineer, Guitars ,
Charlie Morton Producer, , Drums, Vocals
John Hogg Producer, Guitars, Piano, Vocals ,Spoons
What made you go in to music?
Since I was 12 years old hanging out with the Maori’s at school in New Zealand – playing and singing music has been in my DNA,
Are you signed?
My publishing is signed to Sony ATV
You have a brand new track out ‘Butterflies’ tell us more about it
You have a brand new track out ‘Butterflies’ tell us more about it
Like the whole country I had been moved by the people of Royal Wotton Bassett and the many repatriations . Late 2009 I was in Blackpool with friends for the Royal Variety Performance, on November 4th , 5 soldiers had been killed by a rogue Afghan Police officer , one of those fallen was from the Blackpool area, his coffin draped in the Union jack on the long journey home past the hotel where I was staying, after standing on the pavement to pay my respects I sat down on a bench looking out to sea and “Butterflies” poured out of me
What was the writing process like for ‘ Butterflies’?
It was very much a collective process, I had some initial chords that I played Sean, Charlie & John made sense of them and wrote the rest and ‘Butterflies’ was born
What was the recording process like for ‘Butterflies’?
I sat on the sidelines, when you are blessed with such amazing musicians who you also share a genuine friendship and trust, who continually bring the best out of me it is easy to step out until your name is called !!
What’s the most memorable memory you had during the recording of the track?
Listening to the mix after Rory Cushnan had waved his magic mixing wand
You released a fantastic video to accompany the track, what was the process like for the video?
I asked Pete Callow who made the video if he wanted to have another Ian Wills headache!!! , I had worked with Pete in 2005 his film making is phenomenal, I sent him the track told him the story behind “Butterflies’ and asked him what his thoughts were, from there as a band we filtered back our additional thoughts and left it to Pete, from the initial version Pete sent us we gave some inputs and Pete took those on board and produced a final version which is stunning.
Will we see a new EP or Album next year?
Our third album ‘Dream In Colour’ which ‘Butterflies’ is the first single was released late 2016 , The next single ‘ Running On Empty’ will be released in April, Our second album ‘Heroes & Villains’ recorded in 2008 was never commercially released , it has been remastered and will be released in May, the first track off of H&V ‘Villa’ is having a club remix as we speak and anticipation is that it will be one of the tracks that will be getting people dancing off there nuts this summer . Towards the autumn I will be releasing my ‘Wills’ side project ‘London Country’ which is a double album I started recording with Sean producing , I have written 67 songs and expectation is 20 will make the cut
Do you have any gigs or tours coming up?
Wills & The Willing will be playing UK shows late April onwards, i will also be playing some acoustic gigs in the summer
Do you play any instruments?
My weapon of choice is the guitar
Who are your influences?
Woody Guthrie, Bruce Springsteen, John Steinbeck, James Baldwin, Phil Ochs, Sex Pistols, Peter Sarstedt, Billy Bragg, Ian Dury, Barry Manilow, and all that flows between.
How do you get inspiration to write songs?
I think 99% of the time in everything I write or have written there is a piece of me, i know I am deeply flawed and often look inside of me before looking out
Where do you see yourself now in 5 Years?
Other than 5 years older, still writing and recording, still trying to get Chris Martin guest vocal on a Wills album
When you’re not doing music, what do you do?
I have three girls aged 24, 22 & 8 I have learnt how important spending time with those who love you unconditionally is,
What was the song you listened to most that influenced you to go more in to the music scene?
What’s the best advice you have ever been given?
When I was 15 my probation officer said ‘ if you don’t stop fighting all around you and start fighting for yourself how do you expect anyone to fight for you’ that wisdom has never left me
What advice would you give to aspiring musicians not about the industry and just as an artist?
For every yes you get it will be the result of a thousand NO’s, without rejection you won’t find the inspiration, drive and the belief to succeed and achieve your own personal ambitions. If money is your driver than do not take path of creativity.
What quote or saying do you always stick by?
What is is and what ain’t ain’t
Where in your hometown is a must go to visit?
Top of Box Hill
When you are at a gig, what are 5 things you cannot forget?
If I am playing a gig that question is easy, don’t forget the lyrics, the music, to have a good time as the moment may never come again, never out stay your welcome, most importantly that people have given there time and money to see you play and buy your music, never take it for granted and always give your best
You work with PlugginBaby how did that come about?
I knew of Emma Scott, her reputation, within minutes of speaking I knew PlugginBaby was who i needed to work with and to take our music to the next level. fortunately, post our conversation she did not give up the will to live!! Emma believes in our music and also me as an individual , you can’t ask more than that, the rest is hard graft and luck
Do you have social media accounts so your fans can follow you?
our website is www.willsandthewilling.com
my twitter is @IWILLS
and my personal soundcloud is https://soundcloud.com/iu67fxln84ob