Today we welcome Mitford Rebel into the interview room, welcome ladies!
Caz Latham: Hi!
Lauren Denman: Hello
Caz Taylor: Haaai!
It's great to see an all ladies band taking to the stage, so thumbs up for that!
Caz Latham: Thankyou! We have a male drummer, and the all-female fronted thing wasn't intentional - it just happened that way! It's cool, though.
How are we all doing? Please introduce yourselves and let us know your role within the band.
Caz Latham: Very well thanks! We've just come back from trying out our new drummer with great success. My name's Caz Latham and I'm the guitarist, backing vocalist and chief songwriter.
Lauren Denman: Yeah I'm good thanks, I am the lead singer for the band and play acoustic guitar on some songs on occasion. I am also chief tambourine shaker and write a few songs for the band.
Caz Taylor: I'm Caz, I play bass.
How long have you been together? How did it all come about?
Caz Latham: Mitford Rebel formed in January 2010. Lauren and I met at uni, and have been working musically together for about seven years now. We were in a band called The Spinning Jennys that fizzled out after uni finished, and recruited our old drummer Adam Taylor and my old mate Charlotte on bass. We've since swapped them for Caz T on bass and our brand new drummer, Bobby Rathod.
Lauren Denman: Yeah me and Caz. L meeting at Uni and making music together worked well from the offset and we really enjoy the vocal harmony thing we have going on. It seemed only right to carry on with this and it seems to gain the positive response that we were hoping as we always get complemented on them.
What is it that got you interested in this style of music? Was there an inspiration growing up?
Caz Latham: The first band I ever really loved was Oasis, who I noticed when I was about ten years old. This led me, through their influences, to bands like The Beatles and The Jam. However, my taste in music was quite narrow until I started studying popular music at college and then university, which opened my ears to the fact that music of all genres and eras can be brilliant (or awful). I like to be as open-minded as possible when it comes to music.
Lauren Denman: Yeah like Caz. L my musical tastes before going to uni to study music were very narrow. Studying different styles of music at uni really allowed me to experience the beauty of different genres. Living in Salford whilst studying got me really involved with whole Manchester music scene particularly artists like Ian Brown, Elbow and then the whole History of Joy Division and Ian Curtis who are a massive influence of mine. I am also influenced by strong female artists such as Blondie and Annie Lennox who was a favourite of my mum growing up so has always inspired me. Studying music at uni really taught me how to appreciate all styles of music regardless of whether they are 'my thing' or not.
Caz Taylor: My dad plays guitar so I became interested in music and playing in bands through watching him, and it gave me a place to start as we used to play at open mic nights together. I also remember being in school and the headmaster brought in his Fender Strat to show us. He played Layla by Eric Clapton and I thought it was awesome, which is partly why I started listening and getting into rock music.
So far in your careers, what has been the highlight, individually or as a band?
Caz Latham: We've recently had our first EP reviewed in Rock Sound magazine which was very exciting! In the Spring we had our first London gig - at The Enterprise in Camden - which was awesome because we hardly ever get the chance to go visit to London, let alone perform there!
Lauren Denman: Yeah the positive press that we have received has been amazing and just the whole experience of being in a band that you love and people who you love playing music with on a regular basis is great!
Do you have any gigs coming up that you can tell us about?
Caz Latham: We're quite busy throughout August, with the following dates:
6th August: The Blue Room, Blackpool
12th August: The Engine Rooms, Skelmersdale
19th August: The Crescent, Salford
Lauren Denman: yeah then we have a number of dates booked for september too! We will be competing in a BOTB final on the 2nd so fingers crossed it all goes well :-)
What are the immediate plans for you ladies? Do we have any singles/albums/tours in the pipeline?
Caz Latham: We're currently working on our first album, which is being recorded and produced by our old drummer Adam Taylor. We're thinking of it as his swansong. It would be a real shame for him not to have been a part of it, as we started it before he decided he would have to leave, and he was a big part of the creative process with regards to the song structures and his drum parts on these songs.
That aside, the whole thing has been a bit like wading through quicksand recently, considering recording with Adam, gigging with our stand-in drummer David, and now teaching Bobby all the songs ready for him to take the reins in September. Once the album's done though, it's gonna be all systems go and there won't be any stopping us.
If you could choose to play at any venue alongside ANY artist/band in the world, past or present, where would it be, who would it be with and why?
Caz Latham: If we could ever get a support slot for the Manic Street Preachers, I think I would actually wet myself. They're so important to me, both musically and culturally. One of my favourite venues is Manchester Central. It's got a really cool atmosphere that's like a perfect hybrid of an indoor gig and an outdoor festival, somehow.
Lauren Denman: For me it would have to be Joy Division, Just experiencing the intensity of Ian Curtis as a front man and playing alongside them would be amazing. I really like the Apollo in Manchester as a venue, its big but still has a personal feel about it AND the floors are slanted so being short allows me to be able to see wherever I stand, this is usually always a massive issue when I go to a gig.
Caz Taylor: This one is difficult to answer, but probs Wembley arena with AC/DC when they played there a few years ago. Simply because it was the biggest most energetic gig i've ever been to. To hear your own music that loud must be something special.
Music seems to be over ridden with male artists in the mainstream scene, why do you think this is?
Caz Latham: I'd say that's always applied to rock music especially. Maybe it's something to do with guitars being used as a phallic extension. Perhaps it's to do with the varying degrees of aggression that are usually involved. Also, back when the electric guitar was invented and gaining popularity, I'd imagine it would've been very frowned upon for a young lady to want to take up something like that. The agenda had been set right back at the beginning. It's stupid though. We get so many people saying to us after gigs that they were "surprised how good" we are, and things like that. Why should they be surprised? It's great that they enjoy our set, but they obviously have some assumption prior to hearing us that girls = crap. Neanderthal.
Lauren Denman: Yeah I always find it quite amusing how people tell us we were "actually good" I remember standing outside a venue we were about to play at and some guys were giggling saying "yeah were gonna watch a Girl Band next this will be funny." They sat through the whole set and again were surprised at how good we were. I'm not sure if they expected us to be throwing some girl band shapes and singing along to the backing track.
Caz Taylor: I think music like punk rock is oriented more towards male musicians because let's face it, punk rock isn't very 'lady like'. >:)
If people want to find out more about you, where can they go to find you?
Caz Latham: We're on loads of social networking sites, most notably Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/mitfordrebel) and Soundcloud (http://www.soundcloud.com/mitfordrebel). A quick Google of us will bring up loads, though!
Well, it has been great chatting to you today, good luck for the future!
Caz Latham: Thanks for having us, bye! :)
Lauren Denman: Thanks BYE
Caz Taylor: BYE!!!