MIMR introduces Hey Bulldog, the Manchester trio who’s bluesy-psychedelic sound and stunning live shows have attracted many followers. I spoke to the lead man Rob from the band, here’s what he had to tell us
MIMR: How did the name Hey Bulldog come about?
Rob: It always been a song I liked and it has all my favourite elements of what a great song should be, a great riff, a great chord progression, and some cool lyrics. Up until the last couple of years with the reissues and yellow submarine becoming more well know as an album it was also a song that only real hardcore Beatles fans would know as it doesn’t appear on any of their main albums.
So when I was reading a book by Geoff Emerick who was the recording engineer for everything the beatles did from revolver onwards and in it he mentioned how Hey Bulldog was the last real time that it was just the four beatles alone in a room recording a song together before they went to India and then after that the beatles tended to work on things more independently, so it seem like a significant moment in their career and it just seemed like an appropriate meaning to have as a band name.
It gives us a benchmark to aim for and also mean we can’t do any cheesey Beatles covers too!
MIMR: Psychedelic and blues music seemed to have influenced a lot of bands that are around at the moment. What element of these genres are most appealing?
Rob: Personally I think both fundamental elements of those genres are based upon expressing a want for love and freedom. The rootsy heartfelt sound of the blues combined with an other worldly headspace of Pyschedelic sounds has always been a great combination for guitar music.
MIMR: What’s new with the band and what are your plans going forward?
Rob: We released our latest single ‘Makin Friends Not Millionaires’ at the start of the year which has had a really good response on BBC 6 music and XFM and since then we’ve taken some time to just concentrate on new songs before gigging again this spring.
We’ve got enough new songs to do an album now so that’s a possibility or we might just whittle the songs down to an EP or double sided single.
At the moment we’re just looking forward to playing the new songs live.
We’ll have some good gigs and support slots lined up for the summer soon.
MIMR: You’ve received a lot of praise from radio stations and other press outlets. Being in a band is there a better feeling than gaining applause from the music media?
Rob: The praise we have had has been really nice we don’t have any Mangement or a label to help us out, when we release something we do everything ourselves so if we do get radio play or a review we know it’s because the person has listened to our music and just judged it on the quality of the song without a radio plugger or Pr/Mangement pushing it to them. So to be supported by the the likes of John Kennedy on Xfm and Steve Lamacq on 6 music is a great feeling as those two guys are at the top of their profession and the most respected when it comes to new music.
As a band you just want to be accepted and respected alongside other musicians you like, we’ve been lucky enough to have that happen live with some of the support slots we’ve had and also the radio play too.
MIMR: Can you tell MIMR about any memorable gigs you’ve played?
Rob: Playing with Joel Gion and some of the guys from Brian Jonestown Massacre at the Deaf Institute in September was definitely a highlight for us. Sometimes if you are supporting an international artist You won’t even see them apart from when they are on stage but Joel and his band watched our whole set and hung out with us allnight. So that was a great night. We played a gig at St clements church in chorlton last year which was also a big highlight. It was our first time playing a venue like that so we weren’t sure what to expect but it was a great experience playing with an amazing stained glass window backdrop and the incredible natural massive sounding acoustics of the church.
The smaller gigs are cool too you can’t beat a packed out small sweaty bar on a Friday night like at the Jamcafe in Nottingham.
MIMR: What’s your favourite venue in Manchester to play?
Rob: A couple of our favourite smaller venues we’ve played at would have to be The Deaf Institute and The Castle both venues have a really cool stage setting and vibe and good beers too!
MIMR: It’s been a pleasure to finally have you on the blog. Is there any words of wisdom you can give?
Rob: Just do your own thing as well as you can….
Thanks to Rob for talking to MIMR, more gigs are on their way and MIMR will be the place to be once they are announced
Band Website: http://www.hey-bulldog.com