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Lost Cherrees Interview


Was it a hard decision to bring the band back together in 2003, and who is playing with the band these days?

It was an easy decision to try and reform but not so simple in practise, Bev, Andy, Nuts were relatively easy to track down, but we couldn't get in touch with Gail, Debbie or Sian. After we'd rehearsed for six months we started gigging again and Gail and Debbie turned up to say hi, which was brilliant. We decided to carry on as just the four piece, with Andy, our guitarist, joining Bev on vocals.

Last year, just prior to two gigs at CBGB in New York, Bev had been diagnosed with nodules in her throat and was struggling to sing live. We drafted in Joey to help share the singing duties and she stayed on with us until only just recently. Bev's voice is now almost recovered. In addition we recently recruited Buzz on second guitar. He's a very good guitarist and a top bloke, but despite that he's fitted in really well!

The current line up is, Andy - guitar, Bev - vocals, Buzz - guitar, Nuts - drums, Steve - Bass.

How has the bands views and sound changed over the years?

Views wise, we haven't really changed much at all. They say you mellow when you get older, and maybe that's true to an extent, but very strong views are still held and expressed.

Our sound is where the real changes have occured. We work in a private studio where we rehearse and record. Nuts and Andy have been playing together in various bands during the whole time the Cherrees were apart so they developed a tightness that we lacked before. Now Buzz has come onboard too it seems to be getting louder and bigger. We still like to try and write songs that use melody, and Bev and Andy harmonise on most of the tracks, but at the end of the day we're a punk band and we fucking love letting rip whenever we play. That'll never change.

What has been the high point and lowest point of the bands history? Would you do anything different?

Thankfully, there's been tons of highs and not many lows. The highs are mainly the gigs, we've had some great nights, Electric Ballroom, Academy, Surbiton, the 100 Club. Another high was seeing our early records chart and hang around for weeks, which for spotty little teenagers who weren't sure which end of the instruments to play was proper exciting! It was fucking great back then, all grimy, sweaty vans and cider, fumbled sex and cartoon scraps. Young and naive and in a punk band at that time was a fucking mad life.

John Peel taking a liking to our stuff and playing us was a great feeling too.

Since we reformed, the highs have been the CBGB and Forum gigs, doing Wasted, catching up with so many old friends and making so many new ones.

The lows were; breaking up first time round, people just 'not getting' the Unwanted Children 12" single, the odd row here and there with rip off promoters and their 'staff'!

The major low, not just since we reformed, but for always, was the sudden and untimely loss of Stig, singer of Icons of Filth, who we are fortunate to have known and worked with and will always miss terribly.

The only thing I guess we'd do differently is not split up in the first place.

How has the scene changed since you first started? What changes have you seen in your audience?

The internet has completely revolutionised everything, for better or worse. But for punk it's brought it all back together and made it fresh again. Your own site, PunkandOi, is a classic example, informative and comprehensive, it's the first place you'll look when you wanna know what's going on in the scene. Never had nowt like that when we started this.

It's good to see all the older bands still out there doing it and the fact that there's this whole big scene with tons of new young bands, just as angry, just as pumped up doing it too, it makes for exciting times and some very interesting gigs to go watch.

Of course, the biggest change in the audience is many of them are twenty years older. Apart from that, it's remarkable how little things have changed. You still get similar numbers and familiar faces and it's all good.

Tell readers about recent releases, and what track you are most proud of?

This year has seen us release two albums. 'In The Very Beginning....' is a 65 track, double cd back catalogue compilation. It's a pretty comprehensive collection of all our early work. It features the early singles and debut album on the first cd and cd2 includes all our early unreleased stuff, demos, comp tracks, live bits and bobs etc.

We also just released 'Free To Speak....But Not to Question' which is a 17 track all new studio recorded album. It has been selling really well and we've had a fucking brilliant response to it. Both albums have been released on Mortarhate, through Cherry Red.

It's tough to choose a track that we're most proud of but there's an anti fox hunting song called 'Bloody Trophy' which as a complete piece is pretty strong. There a video for it which you can see on our myspace........... www.myspace/lostcherrees

Which is most important about the songs, the sound or the message they convey?
It's all important. There's no way we wanna be doing songs that sound great but we're talking shite, or vice versa. That's not to say that songs like that don't come up from time to time, but when they do we tend to try and just bin 'em.
Bottom line is, the very most important thing about the songs is that we enjoy playing 'em and others enjoy listening to 'em. If that's not happening, then what's the point?

What are your thoughts to the internet music revolution?

It's a good and bad thing. It kinda clogs the consciousness. It's cool to know that people are able to file share and download untold stuff for free, when before they'd either have to buy it or maybe never get the chance to hear it. And it's fucking hilarious to see all these big music companies and corporations shitting themselves cos they ain't getting their pound of flesh.
It's good to have music available to download online, provided that it don't cost people too much and it's only new stuff. After music has been released for a time it should all be available for free.

Please tell the readers 5 facts about the band they will not know?

The infamous gig that we played at the Surbiton Assembly rooms with Conflict and others, that ended up in the 'riot' and pitched battle with the now defunct SPG which made the national papers the next day, was infact arranged and organised by Nuts our drummer,who knowing him, may well have told more than a few porkies to get it on there in the first place!

Contrary to what some people seem to think of us, Lost Cherrees are not at all politically correct and enjoy a mucky joke and a piss take as much as the next person.

After the Cherrees split first time round, Bev joined a band with her brothers called The Gotham City Wreckers. Apparently they used to wear Ice Hockey kits on stage!?!

In 1984 we turned down a gig supporting Gary Glitter at an open air festival in Stevenage.

Steve is a member of the Real Fathers4Justice and was part of the activist wing of the original Fathers4Justice. He was on bail for 15 months awaiting trial after a stunt on top of Tower Bridge dressed as Santa Claus over xmas 2004.
Plans, gigs and releases planned for 2006.

We have a dvd due out on Mortarhate soon. It's called 'There Are No Fucking Rules' and has thirty odd live tracks, picked from gigs spanning 1983-2005.

We just started recording our next studio album ' Anarchy Schmanarchy' which may not see the light of day until next year.

We also plan to release a second free cd sampler which will feature three songs including our version of the Clash's 'Safe European Home'. Like the first one, which is now all but gone, it'll be limited to 500 only and available for free though the website, myspace, at gigs or with merch purchases through us on eBay

The second night at CBGB was filmed and recorded and is pretty ropey, but we may put something out just as a cdr or dvdr through the websites.

Gigwise, we have the two Academy gigs in London and Birmingham in November with an interview the week before on Kerrang radio. Plans are to visit west coast US early next year, which should be amazing cos we get so many people emailing asking us to go there, so we can't wait. We have also been offered three gigs in France, and hopefully that will come together and be announced shortly.

Any final comments?
Yeah, a great big thanks to everyone who's helped or believed. Way too many to mention but you all know who your are.

.....thanks of course to PunkandOi, keep up the good work
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Please note that the opinions expressed by band members does not necessarily reflect the views of this website. Punk & Oi in the UK Limited are in no way liable for comments made by interviewees.


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