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Growing Old Disgracefully are a very accomplished US/UK band whose nearest sound alike would be Thunder. Well worth checking out their website and music. They have a debut album out in the summer - over to Marty Dodge...
1. What are you currently up to? (e.g. touring/studio,etc.)

We are currently rehearsing songs to go on our debut album that is to be recorded on the 16 April in Bracknell.

2. Brief history of the band and the style of music you play.

The band in its current serious form began in early 2004 when John Haithwaite (multi-instrumentalist, ex-Recliners) and I discovered that I could write lyrics and he could write music for my lyrics. We bonded as song-writing team while waiting for a UT map to download.

He began to play a song on his keyboard and began to sing lyrics. I thought it was a known song so kept singing. He told me to stop singing and began writing down what I was singing as well as what he was playing. Once that happened the flood gates opened and we have written about 30 songs as a band plus lots of snippets.

Along the way we picked up an ole' mate of mine Rob who decided out of the blue to learn bass. Mitch Benn, who plays guitars for us but is not an official member of the band, came along to John's house to see what the hell was going on and ended up recording the guitars for our demo.

An old friend of John and mine, John Harrison has taken us under his arm and through his contacts has gotten us a studio to record in as well as handling some of the press for the band.

One of the other characters involved is Jon Pearce, a much published writer and journalist; he has co-written a song with me, a non-fiction book and co-writes two blogs with ( & We play hard rock in the style of older Whitesnake & Thunder; very bluesy.

3.What bands/artists do you admire and/or are an influence?

Our bands influence range from XTC & Stanley Clark to Therion & Wagner.

4. What has been the highlight(s) and lowpoint(s) of your career to date?

Haven't really had any low-points yet as a band as we are taking things steady and calm. It can be a pain in the arse to fit rehearsing and writing around the various schedules of band-members and associates but we endeavour as best we can. Highpoint for me was when I first held a copy of the demo in my hands as I shoved it into my CD player.

5. What would the Growing Old Disgracefully like to achieve ideally by this time next year?

By this time next year we would like to see the band get a higher profile and sell a few albums. If at all possible we would be rehearsing for a tour of the various places which have already showed an interest in our music (Norway & Estonia to name a few). Would like to have some gigging under our belt as well as a stable & complete line-up. But as with much else with this band's progress we will take it how it comes.

6. How easy/hard is it to get gigs and what are your touring plans for the album?

See above.

7. Do you see the interest in rock music growing in the US & UK at the moment? How easy/hard is it to get radio airplay (inc. Internet based radio stations)?
Yes, I think rock is definitely on a bit of comeback at the moment even in the pop world. Success of bands like Freefaller and the Darkness show us that good poppy rock will get played with a bit of luck. Its fairly easy to get your band airplay somewhere on the internet. There are even stations that will be play rough demos.
8. Has the Internet helped spread the word about GoD and do you agree/disagree that downloading aids newer bands?

Yes, because of my personal high profile on the internet, it will be far easier to spread the word about the band. Realistically our band will probably get more traction from countries outside of the US and the UK. I suspect we will never bother the charts but might well do fairly well with online sales and promotion.

9. What's the most rock 'n' roll moment the band has had so far?
Rob & John decided that their chief lyricist (ie me) should be taken down a bit so they found some of my more cheesy sets of lyrics and took the piss out of me. It was after listening to a comedy album that was full of deliberately crap lyrics that this happened.

It was all in good fun and sort of daft. As I don't play an instrument John & Rob occasionally have what they call their "prog" moments where they head off into that realm of widdling and noodling. I got my revenge by getting a set of lyrics and singing them in heavy metal growl. By the end of it we had a song.

10. What CD's do you currently have available and where can they be purchased from?

Our album, probably called "By the Grace of" is being recorded in the middle of April 2005 in Bracknell. We hope to have a CD launch in late July. You can find out more info from our website. Currently it's a blog with some photos and song clips. We are working on a proper site that will go up nearer the time of the release. The blog will remain but as merely a part of the overall site.

11. Message to your fans?

I think at this point we have supporters rather than fans. They have been a wonderful source of encouragement for all of us. Even when I am cringing at my off-note or dropped lyric, these people continue to push us along. I hope they like what we are going to produce and will be able to recommend us to their friends in full confidence. If you like what you hear please tell your mates and get them to buy the album.

Interview © 2005 Jason Ritchie/
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