Kensal Rise DJs and Bands – The Kings Parade Edition
Local Kilburn band The King’s Parade will play anywhere and everywhere. They spoke to us about music, recording, inspiration and where their name came from.
The King’s Parade
How did you come up with the name?
It’s a bit of a strange one but we used to call Chris (the Drummer) “The King” in rehearsals because he would often try to bring some order to the chaos that rehearsals could be! He rather enjoyed that title and often called us his minions…And when the time came to choose a name, the decision was pretty clear.
Have you changed the band’s name before? If so what was it?
We used to be known as “The Poubelle Booms” and we stuck with that name for about a year actually. But after countless gigs of being introduced as “The Poubelle’s Blooms”/The Poubelle Room/The Poubelle…What?…etc We decided that maybe the name was a bit difficult to remember and pronounce so a name change was needed!
Who is in the band and what do they play?
In the band we have:
Chris “The King” Brent – Drums
Sam Rooney – Keys/Backing Vocals
Tom English – Bass
Olly Corpe – Vocals/Guitar
How would you describe the music you make/play?
We’ve always found it hard to describe the style of music we play. I think I would call it a mix of Pop and Soul with some influences from Blues and Motown.
How did the band start?
Sam and I (Olly) were on the same course at Uni and I told Sam about an Open Mic I was playing at in my College. We talked about music and organised a Jam after the gig and eventually started gigging just the two of us. As things were moving fast we decided that we should take it more seriously and start a full band. Tom was a friend of Sam’s from school and Chris happened to be the best drummer at Uni, so we got everyone together and had a rehearsal – The rest is history…
Do you have a record label?
We don’t have a record label at the moment and we’re working hard on our own at the moment. We record, produce and release our own songs as well as promote our music.
How do you record and promote your music? Is it all done online, through gigs etc.
Sam and I both studied Music Technology at Uni which meant that we could easily record ourselves. Sam has focused a lot of time on working on our recordings and has managed to produce some real nice sounding tracks for us. We have a shed outside the house where we record our songs and jam – It’s become Chris’ room as he spends more time rehearsing drums in there than sleeping in his own bed!We also promote ourselves online using all the usual platforms – Facebook, SoundCloud, Twitter…etc But we really try to connect with people not only online but by gigging around the UK and also playing in the street. We’re big fans of busking because it means we can share our music to people for free rather than having to pay entry in clubs and pubs. It also means we can easily chat to new fans and talk about the music with them.
What was your favourite gig? What was your biggest gig?
I think our favourite gig was the same as the biggest gig we’ve done which was alongside the Pigeon Detectives and Collectors Club at Live and Loud. They were great acts to support and we had a lot of fun playing to a great audience.
What’s your favourite song to play?
Our favourite song to play is Vagabond, it is the main theme behind our sound at the moment and a lot of the songs are written around the concept. We like to call it our ‘Single’ and we’ll be releasing a video of it soon on YouTube and we hope it will get as big a response as it did when we released the track online. It’s a track people seem to easily get attached to and we love the way it can ignite a crowd.
Do you ever play any covers?
Yes we do occasionally like to break up our set with a soulful cover such as “I heard it through the grapevine” by Marvin Gaye.
Who writes your songs?
We all like to write together but Olly usually comes up with the main idea and writes the lyrics. It really only becomes a Kings Parade song when we jam the idea out and work on it until we’re all happy with it.
What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs?
The main themes in the songs are usually travelling, finding your home, meeting and leaving people and trying to make a living as a band. Basically the changes throughout our lives that we’re experiencing at the moment.
Do you think these topics will change over time? How has your music evolved since you first began playing music together?
Most definitely, it’s always great to stick to a theme you enjoy writing about in an Album, but our lives will change over time and different inspiration and ideas come with that. Our music has gone through quite a few changes since we first started. We’ve definitely found our direction now…for this album!
What are your rehearsals generally like? Do you have a set time each week in which you practice or are rehearsals more spontaneous?
We really try to push rehearsals because we try to improve our songs every time we play them. It’s great to work on the song together and then really take a look at the detail of everyone’s part. We’re lucky enough to have a rehearsal room in the house so we get to practice a minimum of three times a week. We also often have spontaneous rehearsals when we have new ideas though!What has been your biggest challenge as a band?
Our biggest challenge as a band has been moving down to London. To get the money to fund our move, we worked as a ‘Party Band’ on a cruise ship for three months going from Alaska to Canada, through California and all the way to Hawaii. Getting that job was a very tricky process but we had our aims set in our minds and after the three months we were ready to make our move down to the capital. We’ve now settled down in our house in Cricklewood and really going for it.
What’s your ultimate direction for your band? Are you seeking fame and fortune?
I think the main aim for us at the moment is to gain a big following and hope that people appreciate our music. Our main goal in life is to be able to make a living from doing what we love and for people to take something away from our songs.
What advice do you have for people who want to form their own bands?
Make sure you all have the same mind set as you go into it. We’ve been so lucky to be able to be such great friends and all have the same dedication and perseverance going into this. It’s a really tricky lifestyle especially when you start in a big city like London. You have to make sure that you put your music first all the times and for some people that can be too much when faced with all the realities of life.
How can fans-to-be gain access to your music? Do you have a website with sample songs or a demo CD?
You can check out our music for free on SoundCloud, Facebook and on our own website. All our tracks are available to anyone who wants to have a listen.
Any last words?
We’re aiming to make it as cheap and as easy as possible for people to listen to our music and see us gigging especially when venues around London can be so expensive. That’s why we’ve started our concept of Outdoor Shows, where fans and passers by can check us out playing live at different spots around London, be it at markets or just in parks. Our fans can keep up to date with where we’ll be heading next and it’s a great opportunity to make the most of a sunny weekend whilst listening to music and having a drink. After a few of these shows, we’re hoping to throw a huge party with a few acts and some stands over a weekend, almost like our own festival, so people can enjoy music without the ticket cost!