What are your names?
What is the band name?
The Purple Lights
How did you come up with the band name?
Rob: The band name originated from a rather magical looking purple double decker bus, which we rode on when out living it large in Reading one night.
Akeba: Out one night in reading with a group of friends, we saw a bus that lit itself up in luminous Purple Lights, it startled us for a moment and I suggested Purple Lights should be our name. After searching for some time for a suitable name, we instantly felt this was the one.
What is your genre of music?
Rob: Psychedelic groove rock
Give us a little bio about you as a duo and as individuals.
Rob: The London duo have been winning hearts and minds with their colourful and inclusive live show, gracing festival stages from Latitude to Secret Garden Party. Fusing drummer Akeeba Fridye’s heavy roots reggae beats together with the acid rock riffs and Loopstation electronics of guitarist/Rob Fincham, the pair share and often combine vocal duties to create a gloriously monumental noise. We started playing together a couple of years ago and over the years have developed from acoustic and bongos in to full blown, Hard Groovin rock band.
Akeba: As an individual I’m actually quite a reserved person, around those I feel really comfortable around you will witness Mr Extrovert but I like to listen a lot to people as it helps me understand where they are coming from. This helps my role in music as I get a feel of what could go well with the person or people I am working with whilst behind the drum kit or with the percussion.
What made you go in to music?
Rob: I find music as a great way to express and release feelings and emotions. When other people do yoga or go for a run I pick up a guitar and start writing a song. It has always been my dream to be a musician and living that dream in The Purple Lights is more than I could have ever hoped for.
Akeba: It’s in my blood. From a young age utilizing the pots and pans as a drum kit and even the tables at school. Always a beat in my head, always some sort of rhythm I need to let out or create.
Are you a signed?
Rob: Not just yet
Your brand new single out ‘Warning ‘ ,comes out on the 5th August, whats the meaning behind?
Rob: ‘Warning’s primary message is of noticing the signs of bad things to come before it’s too late. It’s quite a political song, which I know suits the current climate. The song speaks out for the little man being overpowered by corporate injustice.
Will we see an EP or Album, at the end of the year?
Rob: Things are definitely in the pipeline!
Akeba: With hard work and determination continuing, We can’t say no.
Can you tell us more about it if you are?
Rob: We are currently working on our next release, which is a slower number with a bit more of a reggae groove. The track is titled ‘Not Alone’ and focuses on alienation and misunderstanding. We are just making our minds up whether to release it as a single of work on some additional tracks to give people more of a feeling of our style.
Will you be heading out on tour or any gigs?
Rob: Yes we most certainly are! We are very much a live band and enjoy playing up and down the country. We are currently on a festival tour and have been lucky enough to be playing at Bearded Theory, Beacon Fest, Latitude Festival and Secret Garden Party. Keep an eye out on our website of social media platforms for more info.
Akeba: We are booking shows non-stop. We have a few London shows coming up as well as surrounding counties. We will be in the East end of England in autumn around Suffolk, we aim to push up north towards Manchester before the end of the year, and return to the West country of Bristol as well as south in Brighton real soon. We just want to ready ourselves for these ventures before anything. Preparation is key!
If so which Cities will you be heading to?
Rob: We gig constantly all over the country from London to Manchester, Suffolk to Brighton. Keep an eye out for gig date son our social media.
You work with 3-6-9 PR, how did that come about?
Rob: We were recommended them by a fellow musician and after they came to see us play a couple of times they were excited to work with us on a campaign.
Do you play any instruments?
Rob: Yes our band is a mash up of Psychedelic, Punky Guitar followed by some thundering, grooving drums and a variation of synth sounds. All of these are played through an array of interesting pedals and loop stations.
Akeba: Drums or Percussion
Who are your influences?
Rob: I love my rock especially the older stuff such as 60’s and 90’s. I grew up on AC/DC and Black Sabbath but listen to a wide range of music, which I think, helps me as a songwriter. I am a big fan of The White Stripes and The Black Keys and also love a nice bit of Tame Impala.
Akeba: Emperor Haile Selassie first and foremost as his conscious state of mind influenced me heavily to work positively and in unison with others of different cultures and backgrounds to me. In the music world Carlton Barrett (Drummer for The Wailers), Carl Anton (Drumnmer for The Roots Radics) Sly and Robbie, Bob Marley, Israel Vibration, Michael Jackson, Jimi Hendrix, (Early) Artic Monkeys, Pearl Jam, Nirvana, Classic Fm… the list is endless.
How do you get inspiration to write songs?
Rob: Inspiration is taken from everything you do in life, from huge emotion ordeals to the smallest of things such as the smell of grass or the colour of a girl’s eye. The most important thing is just noticing them.
Akeba: Being aware and conscious of things impacting for the better or worse. Things that need to be addressed as songs are a way to get messages across. We have a song called ‘Trigger Man’ which talks of gun crime, especially where I grew up and you have the racial injustices going on in America. It’s about warmongers and the fact we don’t need this happening at all.
Where do you see yourself now in 5 Years?
Rob: Living! Writing! Performing! Loving!
Akeba: World Tour. Spreading some serious vibes to people all over the globe encouraging them to Live, Love, Laugh and most of all Enjoy Life.
When you’re not doing music, what do you do?
Rob: I work in a music studio in London as a producer. I also am a bit of a country bumpkin so at any opportunity I will find a park or expanse of land to go for a wander. The city can get a bit claustrophobic at times.
Akeba: Read, Exercise, but my favourite is to Meditate. Understand self and others, the environment I am living in, how I can utilize what is around me for the better. This can be done by meeting new people, networking going new places nature is my closest ally. Also work when I need to via an agency, that’s pretty cool as I am always out and about in a different place.
What was the song you listened to most that influenced you to go more in to the music scene?
Rob: AC/DC – ‘It’s a Long Way To The Top’
Akeba: There was no one song, but Bob Marley spoke to me louder than any other music artist. The majority of his songs I feel a connection with.
What’s the best advice you have ever been given?
Rob: I am lucky enough to have been to the same sixth form as Ed Sheeran and so on rare occasion may bump in to him around where I live. I had a chat with him at a New Years Eve party a year or so ago and I asked him how he was able to play so many gigs in the early stages. He said the
people who know the best gigs are the performers themselves. At every gig you do speak to all the performers and you will pick up at least one new venue from each person. Communication is key.
Akeba: Everybody’s journey to the top of the mountain is different. You can’t judge someone because they are not doing things the way you would. Bringing positivity to the table injects more positivity into the world.
What advice would you give to aspiring musicians not about the industry and just as an artist?
Rob: Never give up! Keep playing and writing! Most of people who don’t succeed don’t fail because of lack of talent, they fail due to lack of commitment.
Akeba: You have the power to create your own destiny. Utilize every opportunity You get. Constant work and determination goes a long way. You’ll be where You want to be in no time at all.
What quote or saying do you always stick by?
Rob: “It’s a long way to the top if you wanna rock n roll”
Akeba: Bob Marley’s song ‘War’ is a quote of His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia’s speech during an appeal to the League of Nations in 1963. It is very much current to this day.
When you are at a gig, what are five things you cannot forget?
Rob: GUITAR! Charisma! Love! Akeba! Oh and Trousers!
Akeba: Love, Positivity, Humbleness, Thankfulness, Peaceful mind
Do you have social media accounts so your fans can follow you?
Rob: We are on all social media platforms but Facebook is the best to catch our everyday business. Our sounds are found on Soundcloud and on most other other digital platform such as Spotify and Itunes. We have a website which we constantly update with our upcoming gig dates too,
which is http://www.thepurplelights.com.
Listen here: https://soundcloud.com/purplelightsmusic/sets/sow-the-seeds-ep