By Martin Bone, Rock At Night Scotland Correspondent
Venue: Stramash, Edinburgh, Scotland–May 20, 2016– JAMIE & SHOONY EP LAUNCH 20th May 2016–with SUPPORT acts BE CHARLOTTE, BLACKMAIL LETTERING, RETURN TO THE SUN, ALLY McNEILLY
I had already met Jamie Keira singer from Jamie & Shoony a few months back at a network event so after that meeting had listened to his music and it was an instant hit for me. I noted that they were launching their EP in Edinburgh on the 20th of May 2016 and as I was free and live close to Edinburgh. I sent Jamie a message offering to attend and to take some photographs and maybe do a little review. Supporting Jamie and Shoony on the night was Charlotte Brimner, who now goes by Be Charlotte. I photographed her performance last year at in the Solus Tent at the Wickerman Festival 2015 and it really impressed me. I knew that she would not disappoint. Also on the roster for the evening was soloist musician Ally McNeilly, who I couldn’t believe was only 15 years old. The other bands supporting were Return To the Sun and Blackmail lettering, which I believe both bands are from Edinburgh.
I had decided to drive up to Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland, on this occasioning in my own car, however I would always recommend going by public transport if you can or get the tram as it can be busy with traffic and its difficult to get parking as the venue Stramash Edinburgh. I managed to get my car park fairly close to the venue. When I got outside near to the main doors of the venue I noticed Jamie standing next to the front door on his mobile chatting to some people queuing to get into the venue. I then walked across and shook Jamie’s hand, who was hyper at the time, and asked him how “he was feeling”? He said in his own words “absolutely buzzing, mate.”
I noticed that the crowds had started to gather and it was obvious to me that Jamie & Shoony were very popular by the amount of people queuing up at the front door and coming up to Jamie, giving him hugs, and asking when the doors would open. He mentioned he was waiting to get the official gust list and he would have it soon to give to the door staff.
It wasn’t that bad as the sun was shining and you could feel the good vibes. I started to see the “yellow movement” that everyone was wearing me included, as this was a dress code Jamie had stipulated in his event–however it was not compulsory.
Stramash doors finally opened just after 7pm. Jamie had made sure prior to my arrival that I was on the guest list and I received a date stamp on my wrist! It was a little different from getting a press pass or wrist band. He assured me that I would have all access within the venue.
Stramash is located in the heart of the Old Town Edinburgh, next to the vibrant Grassmarket area. The venue has over two floors with a live music stage, accessed from all areas with a mezzanine floor. The venue looked very historic but with a modern touch, I felt the Scottish-ness of the venue and it had a great Celtic feel to the place. I noticed the stage fairly high up I looked around and thought maybe for this shoot I would take my photographs from second floor as I could see that I could access most areas and would give me some good areas to shoot from. I had noticed that the lighting was very poor for anyone shooting with a camera without flash so I hoped when the act started the lights would come on and would help with grasping some nice photographs. The other reasons is I couldn’t see a PIT for taking photographs and I knew that from my prior video research there would be a few people crowd surfing later. For this reason, I thought maybe it would be better to capture this from above.
I got both my cameras ready and took some test shots , as I was struggling to get good light since there were no stage lights. And the main floor and seating area was not well lit. Stage lights were present which were blue and red. This can be a nightmare to us music photographers, as it plays havoc with skin tones and noise and poor exposure. I then raised my ISO to 1600 to 3200 and my shutter speed at 1/125 and kept it above this speed and my aperture as wide as I could at f2.8 on both lenses. However, having no up- lights to light up the performers and only backlights, it was going to be difficult to get some fairly good shots and a concern that some would blur or be too dark. However, this is the joy of music photography and a challenge which I knew I would get through.
Ally McNeilly was the first performance of the night and he started out with Oasis’ “Don’t Look Back In Anger”. His vocals were strong with a slight huskiness to his voice. With only his acoustic guitar, you could clearly see his eyes light up as he was singing to the audience. As the venue got more busier it was obvious he was excited and proud to be part of the performance and supporting Jamie and Shoony . He had great stage presence full of confidence and was belting out some good tunes. It was a perfect start to the night! I could hear a “ Whoop and Whip” as he belted out some Johnny Cash. A great performance and at only 15 years old, it was apparent he has a bright future ahead of him. Ally put on a great performance well done, Ally.
The next performance was from a band called Return to the Sun and are fairly new to the local Edinburgh scene. There style can be classified as Indie /Rumble style of genre of music. One of the songs was called “Waiting to Arrive ” and had a lovely melody and a really nice build. Another track was their new single “Velvet Sky “ which you can download for free on their website. For me, it was absolutely better!! You could see the crowd getting closer to the stage, which they then started to jump around. With the amount of air punching and bouncing of heads it was then I could see then the band become more confident in their performance. As the crowd started to gather nearer to the stage and they began to rock out with them. I would say they put out a good strong performance.
Next up was Blackmail Lettering. I noticed the lead singer moved the mic stand away and this gave me indication that this band would be active and would involve a lot of movement. You could clearly hear there influences from Wolfmother , and Foo Fighters. They showed strong guitar playing and few people in the crowd started moshing during their performance. This band were very active and a song highlight in the set included the song “I Am”.
Next up was Be Charlotte. Charlotte reminds me of Ellie Goulding in her stage presence and her look regarding the presence of a snare drum in her set. Ellie Goulding also plays drums. Not that she sounds the same but I kind of felt there was a little inspiration there. Charlotte can rap and beat box–and you could hear her Scottish accent coming through into her vocals. A highlight was the song “Face” which has a great rap beat and tells a great story. Lyrics with “Love that’s never lost!!” I could see that the crowd had calmed down somewhat during her performance but they were enjoying the electro, hip-hop inspired sound. Again Be Charlotte was pitch perfect and performed a great performance.
So next was what we all had been waiting for–Jamie and Shooney. Jamie passed me upstairs holding the Go-Pro in my hand and he said, “Buzzing mate! Not long now!” The stage was being set and I was looking forward to one of there songs entitled “ Who Are You?” I absolutely love this song, which is upbeat with a mixture of Scottish rap, rhythm, and a brilliant beat with a brilliant vibe full of energy!
Check out he video and look out for a FISH SLAP!
With their energy, their enthusiasm and how much fun it comes across so well how much they love music and how much they love to connect with the people in the crowd. It was all about the Yellow Revolution and Jamie with his radio mic and jumping among the crowd. The other audience members were all getting in on the act and joining them on stage at one point with Jamie telling them “There are too many on stage!!” Jamie continued to interact and talked to the audience, getting them all involved with a shout of “AYE! AYE! “ which exhilarated the audience, which were ecstatic dancing and bouncing!
Jamie while crowd surfing at one point must have had a thirst on, as he managed to grab a beer before and take a drink from the bottle and then being carried back to the stage!! Absolute belter!!
Jamie got the crowd involved by getting everyone to crouch down on the floor at one point, then everybody had to jump up. With a Dizzee Rascal’s ‘Bonkers’ the crowd whipped into a frenzy of excitement absolutely brilliant performance I loved every minute and can’t wait to see them again!! I highly recommend getting to one of their gigs!!
They then played their new song “Settle Down” which you can see here:
Did the crowd settle down?, No they didn’t. The crowd went mental and started bouncing around the floor and stage areas with everyone just having an amazing time .
Jamie then sparked of large party confetti into the crowd colourful- paper in the air and then once again crowd surfing it was my best capture. I couldn’t stop watching the band highly entertaining and fun full of energy!!
The guys sound and perform brilliantly and all I can say the future is Bright it’s YELLOW MOVEMENT! And only fame beckons. These guys are going to be big.
Jamie at the end hen thanked everyone for their support and introduced the band. With shouting to the crowd “ YOU LOVING IT!! AYE then pointing to Shoony and the crowd all pointing and shouting in unison “ SHOOOOONY!! SAY AYE SAYS OCH AYE!! “ Jamie then singled out the bass guitarist Matt who he called “JESUS” (this was due to his long locks and beard) and his drummer Jamie Hughson and the bands who supported on the night and the also venue Stramash.
Jamie & Shoony dedicated their EP launch to Kevin Pearson( see photos–the very happy guy with the beard). It just happened to be his 40th birthday.
There was an after-party arranged with Supa & Da Kryptonites . I couldn’t wait for that as it was just getting onto 11pm, it was about an hour drive home, and had to be up for my work at 5am. So I thanked Jamie for having me and left them to party!
Jamie and Shoony have a loyal fan base and In 2015 they played to sell out crowds in some of the country’s finest venues such as O2 ABC Glasgow, Kings Tuts Glasgow and The Electric Circus. They took the title of the Local Music Scene ‘Best Live Act’ Award but the main highlight of the year was playing to over 8,000 people at Linlithgow’s Party at The Palace supporting Scouting for Girls and Nile Rodgers with CHIC.
Jamie & Shoony
Jamie & Shoony
Jamie & Shoony- Live at Barrowlands Glasgow – Bonkers
Jamie & Shoony LIVE @ Party at The Palace
Jamie & Shoony – WHO ARE YOU ?
Members of Jamie & Shoony
Jamie Keir – Vocals
Shoony – Lead Guitar
Matt Watson – Bass Guitar
Jamie Hughson – Drums
Return to the Sun
Members of Return to the Sun:
STEVE – Vocals / Guitar
ALAN – Guitar / Vocals |
EAN – Bass / Vocals |
JASON – Drums / Vocals
Genre: Rambunctious Indie Rumble
Home Town: Edinburgh
Black Lettering Band Members
Fraser Turnbull- Lead guitar
Harvey Reid- Drums
Dean Finlayson- Vocals
Sam Chapman- Bass guitar
Home Town : Edinburgh
Debut EP ‘Nervous’ released 23rd May
Influences Nirvana, Foo fighters, Green day, Wolfmother, Rolling stones, AC/DC etc..
Be Charlotte Band Members
Location : Dundee
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- Jamie & Shoony fill the Stramash with confetti and pandemonium - May 22, 2016