I GOT TO CHAT WITH LEAD VOCALIST OF NEW MANCHESTER BAND YOUNG MONARCH’S REBECCA LEWIS, HERE’S WHAT SHE HAD TO SAY.

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What are your Full names and ages?
Rebecca Lewis- 18, Rhys Jiang- 19, Daniel Addison- 19, Chris Rabbitts- 19, Hannah May Rose- 19, Matt Sanderson- 20
What is your band’s Genre?
its hard to really categorise our music into one specific genre. We’re definitely pop, but not really commercial and chart pop. I suppose we fit in the ambient/alternative-pop with influences of soul, RnB and rock.
Give us a little bio of the band and you guys as individual
Grew up in Jersey and developed a love of music from a very young age, growing up with albums like ‘London calling’ by the clash and the police, Eric Clapton and led zeppelin. My performing career started at 3 but with dancing. i carried on dancing till I left school partaking in several large competitions including the dance world cup. I was mainly involved in music theatre when i was at school, but developed a love for songwriting from the age of 8 which lead me to apply for the RNCM where i was honoured to gain a place and meet my fellow band mates.

Where did you get the band name from?
Our drummer Matt really liked the name Monarchy and i think we toyed around with ‘The Monarchy of Venice’ for a bit. We were called monarchy for a while until we realized that name had already been used, so we kept the basis of it and just called our selves Young Monarch.

Who does what in the band?

I.e. who does the vocals, who plays what, who writes the songs
Rebecca sings Lead vocals, Rhys guitar, Hannah keys and Matt drums. Luckily enough for us we have multi talented instrumentalists in the band, so Dan and Chris switch between bass and their other instruments depending on the song we are playing. Dan plays Violin and Chris plays Saxophone. in terms of writing, it really depends! Rebecca and Rhys write the skeleton of the track usually. Rebecca writes the melody and lyrics and Rhys writes the chords, then we usually jam around with a new track in a rehearsal and everyone comes up with their own parts. I Love writing this way, because it means everyone adds a bit of their personality to the song, which makes them much more fun to play.

Are You Signed?
No

What instruments do you play?
because we’re at music college most members of the band play more than 1 instrument. Aside from Dan and Chris using their second instruments in the band, Rhys is primarily a drummer, and an incredible one at that! He studies drums at the RNCM and can also play piano pretty well. Hannah also plays the trumpet, Rebecca plays hannah’s trumpet when she’s drunk.
How did the band come about?
I think it began at a Bill Lawrence concert back in October. Hannah and i had had a few pints and we were speaking to Dan and Chris about how much we wanted to start a band. I have been writing original music since i was around 8 (obviously my first songs were less than Grammy award winning) and it had always been my aim to get a band together. we joked about having 2 bassist, but found out that Dan and Chris played other instruments as well. I had a separate conversation with Matt about the same thing, so one day just propositioned everyone. I knew i wanted the genius that is Rhys Jiang in the band, firstly because of his effortless style, but mostly because he was also a good mate of mine. I knew he played guitar, so i kind of just told him he had to do it.. i guess i didn’t really give him an option to say no!
How did you guys meet?
We all study Popular music at the RNCM and are in the same year. We’re all really good friends so making music together was probably inevitable!

Who are your influences?
We don’t have any specific influences. When we write a new song we just write it because we enjoy the sound and its something fun to play, i think thats why our music was quite varied to begin with. If i was to compare us to another band i would go along the lines of massive attack, London grammar and the 1975.
What are your backgrounds whether it’s in music or not?
i think we all come from a relatively musical background, even if neither of our parents were professional musicians. Rhys’s dad is a composer and the rest of our parents either played an instrument or had a love of good music.

How did music come in to your lives and when did you start doing it?
I personally come from a very musical theatre background. I’ve danced since i was 3 so its always been the natural concession, my dad however brought me up listening to led zeppelin and the clash and is pretty good at the guitar and bass, so I’ve had a very varied musical upbringing. even though neither of my parents do music as a profession, I’ve definitely been surrounded by it from a young age, so singing and writing was just something i started doing for fun from as far back as i can remember.
When will you be releasing material?
We will hopefully be releasing 2 singles over the summer and aim to have released our debut EP by March/April time
How do you get inspiration to write songs?
I always write from personal experience. I feel to make powerful music, you should be connected to what you are playing. if i have a strong emotion or memory of something whether that be a heartbreak or just going out and having a good night with some friends, i try to write a poem or some lyrics about it and a song tends to emerge.

Where do you see the band in 2-5 years time?
thankfully we are going to be in Manchester for the next 3 years finishing our degree, so we have time to really produce some excellent music we are proud of with integrity. We all love doing what we’re doing, so if we can carry on making great music and playing live shows to lots of people we will all be very happy. Hopefully in 5 years time we will be signed and have a good fan base supporting us in what we do. Things are looking good at the moment, so with a lot of hard work lets hope we’ll be on that path!
Where would your dream place be to perform in the UK?
I am massive festival goer so my dream would be to perform on a big stage at something like Reading or Glastonbury, other than that, i think the Royal Albert Hall would be an incredible live venue to play at.
Where would your dream place be to perform in the USA?
The first ever concert i went to see was at Madison Square Gardens, and i remember saying to my mum that I’m going to sing there one day, so if that dream could come true, that would be amazing.
If you could do a collaboration with anyone who would it be in the UK?
If they were still alive i would have to say someone like David Gilmoure or Alan Parsons. I’m a big fan of people who make albums that are intended to be listened to from start to finish, without the emphasis on specific singles. If i could have had a conversation with any of the members of Pink Floyd, i would have been very content with life!
If you could do a collaboration with anyone who would it be in the USA?
There’s so many incredible musicians in the USA, it would be hard to say! From a singers point of view it was obviously be a dream to sing with Beyonce (cliche i know! from a musicians point of view, i think someone like Devandra Barnhart, or Mac Demarco.. but i think he might be Canadian. from the rest of the world, id love to make some acoustic music with Matt Corby, or some soaring psychedelic tunes with Tame Impala.
If you weren’t doing music what would you’s be doing?
Probably something science based like Medicine or chemical and biological engineering. i’m a massive geek at heart!

If You got asked by a tv show or film to have your music played on, which show or film would it be?
I’m going to do the geek thing and say anything associated with Lord Of The Rings. There is a section in the single we are about to release which contains a violin solo, and i’ve always imagined that would sound good behind something like LOTR or Game Of Thrones.

Do you have a website, social media pages and music pages for your fans?
We try to be as involved with social media as possible! At the moment we have Facebook (Young Monarch), Twitter (@YoungMonarchUK), Instagram (@youngmonarch) and a website. We try and be as interactive as possible and always like to keep our fans updated on any news or releases!

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