Interview: MK (Mike Kremastoules)
What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
Growing up in the Seventies on a council estate watching the likes of Top Of The Pops and the Old Grey Whistle Test gave me the hope and realization of a way of escaping the mill and factory life. Escape the 'gold watch' scenario by music throwing a lifeline and a chance to express one’s own artistic development through music. The sounds of loud guitar solos like Ritchie Blackmore, Gary Moore, Robin Trower and Bill Nelson to name a couple, were so full of emotion and feel . Also the harmony melodies of Wishbone Ash & Carlos Santana inspired me, not to only play, but to play from the soul. It was the sounds and guitar technique that inspired me more than anything. I went to see any band locally live and my friends and I would get together on our discovery of new bands that we never heard of. It was so exciting to find and compare new artists well before they were famous. Sensational Alex Harvey Band, Journey & Rush etc this was my escapism.
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
I like to visit places of history and scenic places where I can touch and tune in to the world past and present. It’s the emotions it provokes that influences my creativity.
How long has your band been around?
I’ve been playing guitar since I was 14. I've been in numerous bands over the years including a pretty popular band called Ded Ringer who were part of the early 80’s New Wave Of British Heavy Metal scene. I decided to go ‘solo’ during the covid lockdown of 2020 when I wrote a full album of guitar instrumentals. I've been knocking around for many decades but my journey as a solo artist has only really just started.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
Born & bred in Leeds in West Yorkshire. A very working class area full of mills in my time. The Leeds Music scene was more subdued than London. Everyone came from London but Be Bop Deluxe came from neighboring Wakefield and we’re a big influence on me as a musician
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
It’s the initials of my name. It is really as simple as that
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
Probably my favourite venue back in the day was The Fforde Grene (Ford Green now). Everybody passed through there in Leeds. Although I played the Marquee in London - but that was more of a buzz of the name. Now the O2 Arena in Leeds is my next target and the Leeds/Reading Festival. I would love to be invited to the Leeds Festival as I am a Leeds artist and Reading because that was the first
festival I ever went to and I lost my virginity there too lol
If you could play any show with any lineup, who would be on the ticket?
I don’t know, there are just so many talented artists. If I really had to choose I'd love to be invited to open as support for blues-rock guitarist Jo Bonamassa. Gives a call Jo
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
To always believe in yourself. You are your greatest fan and don’t beat yourself up when things go wrong. To my younger self, it would again be to believe in yourself and be grateful for how far you’ve come. No matter how many small steps you take - they are all important.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
A hard question to answer. To be honest all of the songs mean different things to me in different ways. I don’t have any one in particular because they all mean something personal.
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
I draw inspiration from life. The idea starts and grows with me and then I develop it in the studio with input from very talented musicians.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
I like to express emotions and fun feelings of that moment for people to share them with me. Life and emotional experiences influence my writing; this is where I draw my inspiration from. I'm not trying to create a different type of music - I am hoping to share my emotional attachment with my guitar playing to a wider audience.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
I’m looking forward to live dates & tours and the release of my first Solo album ‘Calling’ out later this year. At the moment I am promoting my new single and really driving rock instrumental ‘Run’ which will be on digital platforms from 28th Feb 2022
Please check out the video
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