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Dave Kerr, Silverjet: Interview, July 2014

@louelladeville_ @PlanetMosh interview with .@DaveKerrMusic .@SILVERJETROCK

I didn’t get chance to do a face to face interview with Silverjet at NLC/RAPCA festival. Dave Kerr has kindly taken the time to answer a few questions I put to him by e-mail. He tells us, amongst other things, about the line-up over the years and how they’ve arrived at being the 3 piece they are today. Influences, what’s in store and how he could have been a florist!

Silverjet have been going for over 10 years with various line-up changes. Can you give us a bit of the band’s history?

Silverjet 2014

Well, I will try to keep this bit as brief as pos cos there is a LOT of history haha! It all kinda started out as four mates (myself, Paul Oates, Jon Hardcastle and Andy Mewse) jamming a few times a month in a tiny little practice room trying to find themselves a rock n roll singer to front the band. After a fair ol while of this not happening, for one reason or another, I decided to give it a try myself. The original line up set out to play a few gigs for nothing more than a bit of a laugh really, we never intended on doing half the stuff we managed to be honest. After the debut EP (The Amalgam Sessions), first two albums (Honour Amongst Thieves & Silverjet) and a few years of playing alongside our hero’s, such as The Quireboys and The Dogs D’Amour, we landed ourselves with opportunity to go off to the States to play a few shows out there. Unfortunately, this commitment brought on the first line up change. I think although Silverjet was, and always will be, a huge part of Paul Oates he had to move on to other important areas of his life, and felt that staying in the band would have held us back. As we had the States shows looming which included the world famous Whiskey a Go Go (LA) and The Dive Bar (Las Vegas) supporting The Sin City Sinners (Todd Kerns, Brent Muscat) we had to quickly find someone to step up, not only to the challenge of learning a full set so sharpish but also to, the big commitment of the flying out to the States with us.

Enter “Indy”. We knew Indy through another local Sheffield band, who were a bit more 60’s rock n roll type sounding but, Indy always had a huge soft spot for things more ROCK! He was amazing, played great, looked great, easy to get on with so that was that. I can’t even remember how long Indy was with us before we parted ways to be honest but it’s been a bit of a long road so the memory is a little hazy! But, I do know that the last tour we did with him was with Hanoi Rocks, which is where Liam Hill (Pais) first saw Silverjet live. Shortly after that tour was when we started advertising for a new bass player and Pais was one of the first we auditioned. He nailed it from the first night! Then again, the line up changed after we parted ways with Andy and in came the awesometastic Sally Gallo. Aaaannnd then… a few more tours and a few more years later we had the departure of Jon. I think because we had gradually been changing up over the years but always with me and Jon left from the original line up, it never quite hit how much things had changed until I realised I was the only one left of the original four! But, I can’t seem to let go of the band so heyho…keep moving forward n all that. J Lee Stoyles coming into the band was probably one of the biggest changes sound wise. Jon and Lee have quite a different way of playing and that has had a big affect on how the sound has reshaped. Now that Sally has moved over to the states and married the love of her life (which we are all extremely happy for her!!) we have this time decided to just stay as a 3 piece. We’ve played a few shows recently as a 3 piece and it’s been working for us so, we might as well see how it pans out!

Who rights the lyrics/music?

Primarily I write the lyrics and music. There have been the odd collaborations or so with the other guys over the years. Push Kick Bravado I think was the only without any shared writing and the latest EP “4FSO” saw the first song that myself and Pais wrote together with “Ain’t Expecting Love”. I had the music and a lot of the lyrics knocking about for years actually and then Pais came along, changed up and added a lot of the lyrics and revived a song that I had never expected to use after it being sat in a drawer for years haha. More recently the three of us have been working on stuff together which has been great.

With two EPs and three albums under your belt which is your favourite song and why?

Erm, I don’t know if I can say I have a favourite song to be honest. It changes all the time. I mean, to be honest I don’t tend to listen to us that much haha, so I kinda forget about a lot of the stuff unless we’re playing it in the live set. Sometimes I will hear a track for the first time in ages and be like “Wow, I actually really love that song”. I could probably say that my favourite album is Push Kick Bravado…More from a song stand point than anything. The production is a little rough round the edges but overall I think it’s probably my favourite.

Louella with Silverjet's Dave and Liam at Aces High Festival 2013
Louella with Silverjet’s Dave and Liam at Aces High Festival 2013

When’s your next release planned?

Hopefully the next album will be early 2015. I’m pretty sure that before then you will all get a single or two and maybe a video from us though. Hopefully towards the back end of 2014 for that!

You’ve opened for some great bands including The Quireboys, The Dogs D’Amour  and Hanoi Rocks, which has been the most memorable gig you’ve played and why?

I think this will be different for each of us…maybe, so I can only speak for myself here but, I reckon all things considered the Hanoi Rocks tour was the best. We were in a good place for that tour. Jon managed to land us that off the back of us playing in LA and I remember when it was confirmed just grinning from ear to ear! I wasn’t actually that big a Hanoi fan at the time but, since that tour, seeing them play night after night, they were amazing. And we got to play to some of the best crowds ever! But, that said…playing alongside The Quireboys, The Dogs and Buckcherry who are all in my top 10 favourite bands of all time…that’s a hard call…if you ask me that question another day in the future the answer might well change!

What’s the smallest crowd you’ve played to?

Ha! I think the smallest crowd was probably about 3 or 4 people! We still rocked it!

What’s been the biggest?

I reckon a near sold out Rock City on the Hanoi tour.

Do you put on the same show regardless of the size of the venue/crowd?

Yes! Well, we certainly try! Sometimes it makes it a little harder “getting in the mood” if you have a poor turn out but, even at the above mentioned 4 person gig, as soon as you start playing and see that those few people there are digging what you do it makes no odds what so ever and you feel like this is why you born…haha or something like that ;-)

What can people expect from a Silverjet show?

You can expect three guys who love music and love to play live turning up to put on one kick ass rock n roll show for you! We do this because we get off on it. Obviously we play for ourselves but, we’re always blown away by the sheer commitment of everybody out on the underground scene who makes the effort to go out to see bands like us and you will see how much we appreciate that in our shows.

Which of all venues you’ve played is your favourite and why?

That’s a really tough one again! Corporation (Sheffield) will always be like our home because of our roots so that place probably takes it for me but, there are so many great venues our there like the Maze, The Diamond, Yardbirds, Bannermans etc..

Who would you most love to open for?

For me I reckon, from a point of someone I’d love to hang out with and see playing every night then maybe the likes of Black Stone Cherry, Shinedown or Papa Roach. But, if we’re playing it smart then obviously Bon Jovi or Nickleback or something cos they’re bringing the numbers aren’t they haha…I’m 100% sure that the other two would answer completely different though.

You like to write your set lists in broad Yorkshire. Any plans to cover a famous Yorkshire song like ‘On Ilkla Moor Baht ‘at’ or write a song in broad Yorkshire?

Hahaha that has literally only ever happened once! That set list at the NLC/RACPA show that you picked up was the first and last time that ever happened haha. So, probably not likely to cover the Arctic Monkeys any time soon. lol

Dave KerrApart from Silverjet which local bands should rock fans look out for?

Loads of em…I would feel really bad if I was to list the names but forget some so, best thing to do is all you guys reading this go onto any of our facebook profiles and look at the bands we “like”…there will more likely be more local/unsigned bands on there than big name bands we all know!

Which other bands do Silverjet members play for?

Pais fronts his own band Modern Day Dukes who are really great! I play guitar for Teenage Casket Company. I also recently released my first solo CD “Slave to Rock n Roll” (available on my download page at www.facebook.com/davekerr81) wink wink, nudge nudge

Do you find many conflicts or clashes of schedules?

Yeah that definitely happens from time to time but, that could happen regardless of whether or not we played for other bands. We basically have to just work on a first come first serve basis. It’s worked out so far anyway haha

Is music something you do for fun or is it a full time job?

Music will always be something that is done for fun, it has to be because if it isn’t fun then there’s no point doing it lol. I know that’s not really the question like so, realistically, no we don’t make a living out it…it would be amazing if we did but sadly not. I don’t think that will ever factor into it for us though either. I think most guys out there like us do this at a cost to them rather than making anything but, we do it cos it’s in our blood!

If you weren’t playing music what other career would you have chosen?

I did an aptitude test at school once and that said I would be suited to being a florist…so maybe that?

Who are your biggest influences?

So, so, so many to name them all but, for me probably as expected bands like G ‘n’ R, Crue, Papa Roach, Quireboys, Buckcherry…all the obvious ones lol

Silverjet Poster
Silverjet Poster

Which three bands are you listening to most at the moment?

In my car at the moment I am on a decent rotation of Joan Jett, Keith Urban, Jace Everett, Roxie77, Billy Idol and New Generation Superstars

I caught you at NLC/RAPCA last month and you’re already booked to play next year with Liam having some ideas for next year’s festival. Can you tell us what made you want to get involved and what’s the plan for NLC/All Stars?

We love all the guys at NLC and RACPA! We are blessed to be part of such an amazing event and honoured to have played each one so far (I think we have anyway!) As for the All Stars thing…..You will just have to wait and see haha ;-)

What have Silverjet got planned for the rest of the year?

We have just started the recording process for the next album. We do everything ourselves as far as recording and that goes because we are poor and have no money haha. So, that’s the main thing at the moment. We will be playing some more shows before the years out and then next year we are gonna be back with a vengeance!! We have some exciting shows that I can’t mention at the mo but, watch this space!

Thanks for taking time to answer our questions. Any last message?

Thanks for wanting to talk to us! We appreciate it. All I will say is please check us out on Facebook at www.facebook/silverjetmusic if you haven’t already! Remember to hit that “like” button and click to “get notifications” cos Facebook are bum raping all of the bands out there to pay for adverts! And we hope to see you at a show soooooon!

About Louise Swift

I first went to a gig in 1981, Gillan at Leeds University. I've been a regular gig goer ever since. I haven't kept count of how many gigs I've been to over the intervening years, but it's a lot! My favourite bands are AC/DC then, in no particular order, Anti-Nowhere League, Slaughter and the Dogs, Towers of London and Dirt Box Disco. I tend to like Glam/Punk and rude offensive lyrics, not sure what that says about me but as Animal would say 'So What!' The question was recently put to me - did I write for any online publications? My reply - No, but I'd like to! Planetmosh was suggested and I found myself offering to review Aces High Festival. Easy peasy I thought! Well not quite, if a jobs worth doing it's worth doing well! I had sixteen bands to research. I found I actually enjoyed that and it kept me too busy to be making lunatic comments on Facebook! ;) Then I felt a bit inadequately qualified. I mean, who am I to comment on others, when my musical expertise extends to being able to play a mean Greensleeves on the recorder and a passable Annie's song on the flute! Haven't picked up either instrument for years! What I do have, however, is over 30 years of experience as a gig goer, so I can comment on what I like and what I don't! It's only my opinion and, if I don't like a band it doesn't mean they are bad, just not to my own liking. I admire anyone who has the guts to get up on that stage and have a go!
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