There isn’t an artist we’ve seen live as much, or talked to as much, as Lucy Rose. From the first time we saw her at the tiny Portland Arms in Cambridge we’ve been in awe of her remarkable talent and have wanted to support her as much as possible on the show. Even though Zara infamously once asked Lucy if The Maccabees (then on album number three) were her favourite new band, Lucy still let us chat to her after another magical set at T in the Park.
We are joined by NMFs favourite Lucy Rose. How are you Lucy?
Yeah very good! I’m enjoying the sunshine and these chairs we’re in, they are ridiculous!
Yes, we are in these really cool swingy chairs, we’ve been sitting on them all weekend. Basically just waiting here until people leave them… We want to talk to you about festivals because obviously you played Glastonbury a couple of weeks ago and that was pretty awesome – you got to get out there and say ‘hello Glastonbury’. How has festival season been as a whole for you? Including T in the Park.
Very different to last year. Last year’s was just awful. Not awful, but muddy and rainy. It was so muddy and rainy! But this year, every one I’ve been to, touch wood, there has been so much sun and it’s been amazing. Everyone is having a really good time and Glastonbury was amazing, a lot of fun. Today as well, coming up to Scotland is really exciting and the crowd are always really different. They always seem to be way more up for it in a way, it was really fun.
I was not imagining T in the Park to be sunny and hot – was imagining rain!
I know. It’s so good!
And also you’ve been touring the US. You were there March and April and you’re going back in September. How has America been for you?
It’s been good. I’ve only been there once. I mean I’ve also been there supporting Bombay Bicycle Club but I went and did my own thing. I did some shows with the band and then they flew home and I got in a car and drove myself across America. My album is still not out there, I’m trying to get my album out there – you wouldn’t believe how difficult it can be! But hopefully it’s coming out soon. It’s weird playing gigs and people not knowing your music still, or all they know is from YouTube. It’s frustrating because they want the album and they are paying like fifty quid to get them shipped over from the UK and I just feel super-bad, I want it available on iTunes for them. Hopefully in September it will be, we’ll see.
What was it like driving across America? Was it as amazing as it sounds? Or hard?
It was amazing but probably on average ten hours driving a day and then a show in the evening. But I think because the scenery was so good and I was jet-lagged, I could get up at six in the morning and not feel too bad… it was just me and a friend and we took it in turns, two hours each, and it whizzed past and we got to see a lot of cool stuff on the way including the biggest piece of tumbleweed I’ve ever seen in my life. It was honestly like the biggest ball I’ve ever seen and it was rolling down the motorway towards us and there was nothing else on the road and it just smashed the front of our car…
It was amazing. I was like, ‘I need to see some tumbleweed’ and then it was rolling across and I was like ‘TUMBLEWEED!’ and it changed direction and came towards us and there was only one lane we could drive in and I was like ‘TUMBLEWEED!’ and then it was just coming closer and I was like ‘Oh my god!’ Then it smashed the front of the car and it was ridiculous.
I feel a lyric coming on…
Yeah, I’ll have a new song called ‘Tumbleweed’.
‘Massive piece of tumbleweed’ by Lucy Rose. And you’ve been playing some of your new tracks recently, how’s the new record coming along?
It’s good. The label want to do another record which is very lucky for me. It’s very different this time as I’m writing all the songs on the road so it’s different to writing them in my bedroom like last time when I expected no-one to hear them. I think with my confidence they are a lot bigger and louder and I’m having more fun with them. I think people seem to like them, they seem to be getting a good response.
They are getting a really good response. You’re naming some of them after cities at the moment, we think you should name one ‘Cambridge’ just for us.
I should just go there and write a song.
‘Tumbleweed’ followed by ‘Cambridge’, it would be great! I was in Starbucks the other day and two of your songs came on.
Yeah! Has that ever happened to you and if so is it a bit weird when it happens?
Really weird. Recently I went on holiday to France. I just drove like eight hours to the south of France, was in the middle of nowhere, the most remote place I’ve been to in my life. And there was a little village shop and I went in to get some BBQ stuff and Scar came on and I was like ‘Oh. My. God.’
‘Everybody this is my song!’
I could see everyone in the shop and I wanted to be like ‘yeah!’ but I couldn’t say anything. I had to play it cool because no-one would believe me anyway.
That’s insane. We wanted to ask you a bit about your band because we’ve interviewed you quite a few times before and we’ve actually never really talked to you about your band. We particularly enjoyed today Simba doing his little solo and your guitarist smashing his guitar on the floor…
That was by accident though…
Really?! It looked cool! It looked very rock’n’roll.
No way. It literally slipped out of his hand. I was like ‘woah, what’s Bjorn doing?’ He was like ‘ahhhhhhh!’ He is so precious about his guitar, he gets it out really carefully and plays it really carefully, and then it smashed on the ground today.
It was a big smash as well.
It was insane! I was like, ‘what were you doing?!’ He had no idea what happened.
I think he just jammed a little bit too hard.
He just went mental by accident, he’s not like that. Simba’s awesome. The band are very important because, you know, with a lot of solo artists and bands you see a lot of – especially girl solo artists – session bands really holding back behind them in their matching uniforms and stuff like that. I was like ‘this is not what I want’. They are my closest friends as well and great musicians. I think it really does feel like a band, not like a solo thing. A group of people playing music together and having fun.
How did you all come together? Because I know about Simba’s open mic nights…
Yeah he booked me for my very first open mic like six years ago. I turned up, had never sung into a microphone – I was like 18 – and he welcomed me in. I became really good friends with him and started running nights with him; he was doing the sound, I was the door-girl. Bjorn used to be in Razorlight and they are under the same management, so I pinched him. He came to me saying ‘I want to start playing music with you, I think it’s really interesting’ and that was a massive confidence boost for me at the time because I was doing nothing and playing on my own. The drummer, I poached him from a band I used to book; I was like, ‘he’s a really good drummer, I’m going to see if he wants to play music with me.’ Alex as well was just from another band. I met people along the way and people who wanted to come play could come play.
It’s so nice that you’re all really good mates and obviously that must help with the craziness of the road. Last question – we saw on Twitter that you have a new bike! I don’t really know what the question was but you’ve got a new bike…
I want to talk about the bike! The bike is amazing. It was fifty pounds for this second-hand BMX that I went to buy from someone in Hackney. Total bargain. It’s got pegs so a lot of the time my friend will cycle it and I can just stand on the pegs. We just whizz around, go to gigs, take someone for a lift. It’s wicked, so much fun.
Awesome! And you have a song called Bikes so it all fits together.
I just love bikes!
We were like, ‘does Lucy have a bike obsession?’
Anyway, thank you very much for talking to us today and we loved your gig.
Our previous interviews with Lucy at Latitude 2012 and at the Cambridge Junction can also be found here…
A full list of interviews can be found on the Lucy Rose fansite http://lucyrose.net/lucy-rose-interviews/