Interview: The Original RudeboysTweet
The Original Rudeboys have just had the most rollercoaster year of their lives. Their debut album - ‘This Life’ shot to number one on the iTunes charts and reached a peak of number three in the Irish albums charts. Since then they have been touring the U.K. and Ireland playing concerts relentlessly, culminating in performances at both the Phoenix Park and T in the Park last weekend. I caught up with them and discussed all this and more.
Guys you just played Phoenix Park and T in the Park, how did they both go for you?
Rob: Swimmingly is a word that I would use…
Walshy: Especially at T in the Park ‘cause we were literally swimming in the muck. It was bad, probably the worst that I’ve ever seen at a festival.
Worse than Phoenix Park?
Rob: Phoenix Park got some sun but T in the park was just rain all weekend
Sean: Fantastic festival though.
It was your first time playing in Scotland, so what was the crowd like?
Sean: There were around 300 hundred people there, and a handful knew the songs.
Rob: We were opening up the stage at 12 though, if you’re playing at 12 on a Sunday morning people are still a little tired from having a weekend of madness.
Sean: People did make the effort though to come out and see us, it was good to go out to the Scottish crowd that didn’t know us and prove ourselves. When you play to an Irish crowd that know your songs, you kind of have them in your hand, but when a crowd doesn’t know you and is judging you, you have to impress them. It’s healthy for a band.
At Phoenix Park there was a crowd of about 8,000, that’s a great crowd to draw considering you were the first act on stage.
Sean: The promoters told us to expect a crowd of around 300 people for our set, we go out and
there’s 8,000 people so it was crazy.
Did you get to meet Snoop?
Rob: We didn’t quite get to the shake the man’s hand but we did get to share…the same…eh…environment…you know he was just smoking weed the whole time…
Walshy: You don’t really want to mess up his whole feng shui buzz.
It was also well documented that there was a lot of trouble at the concert, what type of atmosphere did you guys feel on Saturday?
Rob: We were on the other side of the stage so we don’t have any stories or opinions on what was going on out in the crowd, the artists and the bands just come to play tunes, it’s up to the guards and security to make sure that the crowd are behaving themselves. To come to a gig and to have that kind of crap is not necessary.
Walshy: From the stage it looked like a party atmosphere, everyone was loving it.
Rob: Yeah, everyone looked like they were in good spirits so from what we could see people were just enjoying themselves, dancing away and having a few drinks. But of course deeper into the crowd there were people who don’t want to do that.
Sean: What happened was awful but the media don’t write that thirty odd thousand (people) walked away happy, and had a great day. It was just a small minority that had to ruin it for a lot of people.
Rob: It’s not much of a story for the media if there just saying that forty thousand people enjoyed the gig and had a great day.
You have the all ages gig in the Academy coming up, is it important to have these all ages gigs with your type of audience?
Walshy: To sell out an all ages gig is great.
It sold out way in advance didn’t it?
Sean: Yeah, it sold out three or four weeks in advance. Before it went on sell, we were discussing with each other if we should aim for a venue with such a big capacity.
Rob: The promoters talked us into it and told us we could do it, even though we were reluctant.
Sean: I think because we’re still so new, we kind of still wonder if anyone’s going to turn up.
Rob: With it being during the day and no alcohol being served, the majority of the crowd will be underage so to sell that out is a great achievement.
And you are having a meet and great opportunity on the day as well?
Rob: Yeah, our plan is to meet every person that walks through that door, so we’re looking forward to meeting everybody that comes down.
Sean: It’ll be a long day but it’s worth, these people are supporting your music so the least you can do is shake their hand and say thank you.
You got your break from your Youtube videos, and you’re very active on both your facebook and twitter accounts. Is social networking important to the band?
Walshy: It never leaves your hand.
(Picking up his iPhone)
Sean: Having fans and replying to fans through social networking helps to spread your music, so there are huge benefits to online socialising.
You also have a new E.P. coming out?
Rob: Yeah, it’s out on the 20th of July, the day before the Academy gig. It has a new mix of sunny days on it and a cover of Gnarls Barkley’s Crazy as well.
With one of you playing the ukulele, one rapping and the other playing guitar, is it hard when you come together to write songs with the different styles you each have?
Sean: Some songs from the album I went off and wrote and then gave them to Rob and he puts his twist on it and he’s written songs and I’ve put my twist on them or we’ll collaborate, but we’ve never sat down to write a song and struggled.
Walshy: I think when we’re just sitting down and jamming, we write or best stuff.
You’re doing about a gig a week this summer is there enough time to write new material?
Rob: Yeah, we’re constantly writing, we probably have enough new material for the second album. We are constantly writing because when we get into the studio for the second album, we want to have a surplus of material and then hand pick which ones we want.
With the live gigs you’ve moved from acoustic guitar to electric guitar, why the change?
Rob: I’d rather play electric guitar, but mainly it’s for diversity throughout the gigs.
Walshy: Also, when you come to a live show you want it a bit mixed up, you don’t want people to say it sounded just like the album, you want it to be a show.
So when the summer is out of the way will you concentrate on the new album or keep gigging or what’s the plan?
Rob: We’ll always keep gigging and writing on the road, and then hoping to start on the album around November.
Sean: We do still need to push the first album though and we already have about eight songs for the second album, so the material is definitely there.
With the increase in your U.K. dates, that must be a market you now want to tap into?
Sean: Absolutely we’re doing a gig on the 31st of July and that’s our first London gig, so the plans is to start at ground level and hopefully build it like we did in Ireland.
How is rapping in Dublin accents received over in England, were you nervous about it?
Sean: I was yeah, but I’ve found with the three gigs we’ve done in England that the crowd have picked up on it like it’s a normal thing, if they like how you rap and what you’re rapping about they just take to it.
Rob: I’m sure when the London rap scene started people thought “what’s this?”, but it’s just the way Ned (Sean) talks and raps.
So plans for the future, just keep gigging and then onto the next album?
Sean: Yeah, gig gig gig.
Walshy: Just keep mixing it up and mess with people’s heads and see what they make of it.
Sean: Just keeping it all fresh
Rob: Just move onto the next album and see if we can have the same success that the first has had so far, pretty much just keep on making music.
This summer, catch The Original Rudeboys in a venue or festival near you. Check here for a full list of their upcoming gigs.