The Interview With…. Polly And The Billets Doux

 Earlier on in December Polly and the Billets Doux featured in the 4th In The Spotlight series. They are a highly talented band and I do predict big things for them in 2011. There is a 9 day tour in February which I am most definately attending. The band have been gaining critical acclaim from The Daily Mirror, The Independent, Uncut to name but a few.
I was lucky enough to interview Ben Perry and Dan Everett from this fantastic band:

The band began life in 2006, but how did you all come together to form Polly and the Billets Doux?

DAN :We all lived together in a large house for a while. We were all doing seperate musical things at the time, but came to realise that we had something good going closer to home – well, at home, in fact.

BEN : Some of us had been in various rock bands together, up to then, slogging the circuits and when this idea began to emerge it seemed like a welcome change. I think we were on the same wave-length musically which helps!.

Billets Doux is French word, but who are the Billets Doux?

DAN; The phrase is old English term for love letters shared between two individuals conducting a secrative relationship. This phrase is no reflection on the band itself. We’re
no Fleetwood Mac in that respect.

BEN : Who are we? Im not sure if I know, Work in progress I guess!

What made you want to pursue a career in music and form a band?

DAN :The escape from the 9-5, creative fulfillment, to be on Top of the Pops (although we’ve missed the boat on that one).

BEN : The feeling of being alive and having fun. You have to really love what you do! I couldn’t think of doing anything else!

You have played quite a few gigs and big festivals such as the Bandstand at Glastonbury in 2009. But what has been your most memorable gig you have played at and why?

DAN : Lupallu in Scotland. From the stage, we could look out over the wilds of the far north of Scotland. Wonderfull.

BEN: That was pretty special. Headlining the second stage at Blissfields this year was a corker. The Tent was empty before we started but was rammed by the time we went into the first song. The atmosphere was just exhilarating!

Who are your musical influences?

Billie, Ella, Joni, Miles, D’Angelo, Lowell George, Richard Thompson, Beefheart, Costello, Dury…the list goes on and on!

If the band was able to collaborate with anyone dead or alive who would it be and why?

DAN: John Cage, maybe. A musical inventor.

BEN: Louis Prima. King of the swingers! Trumpet is a beautiful sound!

Your debut album Fiction, Half Truths and Downright Lies has been praised by many people but what can we expect from the follow up?

DAN : Darker in tone perhaps, more dynamic – but with good songwriting underpinning it all.

BEN : We love our album but It doesn’t refect the energy and passion of our live show enough.

If you had to recommend one of your tracks to first time listeners which one would it be?

DAN: That’s a hard one…Has to be two, I’m afraid: Follow my Feet for Saturday night. Back to Earth for Sunday morning.

BEN : Suits me!

If you were stranded on a desert island what three things would you take and why?

DAN: A knife, a spear and a guitar

2010 is nearly over but Where would you like to see your band at the end of 2011?

DAN : Touring by coach, riders with real ale and good wine. Ultimately, some kind of financial security – the pot of gold for all bands, surely.

For more from Polly and the Billets Doux go to:

If your on Twitter follow: @pollybdoux

If you like the sound of the band you can catch them live at (I hear their live shows are amazing):

18.02 NEWCASTLE Cumberland Arms
19.02 HULL New Adelphi
20.02 YORK Stereo
21.02 LEICESTER The Musician
22.02 NOTTINGHAM Malt Cross
23.02 LONDON Lyttelton Arms
24.02 KENT Astor Theatre
25.02 BRIGHTON Hope Venue
26.02 WINCHESTER The Railway


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