Pictures by Dijana Capan / DVision-Images / http://www.dvision-images.com
“We’re not Reading born and bred, we’re Reading Festival born and bred.”
Saltwater Sun are a rising five-piece band from Reading – Jennifer Stearnes (vocals), Dan Kingham and Joel Neale (guitars), Rob Carter (bass) and Benny Chandler (drums, deputized for by local musician Alex Woodward today).
After a brilliant performance on the BBC Introducing Stage, they spoke to Wokingham Paper about their life in Reading and gave some advice to aspiring musicians…
How did today’s gig come about?
Festival Republic are allowed to put 4 bands onto the stage. They picked us up – we don’t know how.
We’ve done some stuff with BBC Introducing in the past. They’ve been really good to us – Linda Serck and Bridgitte Tette are absolute legends.
What was it like playing Reading Festival?
A childhood dream come true. Literally – we’re not Reading born and bred, we’re Reading Festival born and bred.
Most of us came here for the first time after getting our GCSE results [Jen: “I didn’t wait for mine, I came here and my Mum phoned me up with the results”].
So we always said that if we played here, it’d be a dream achieved.
So what’s next after this?
Glastonbury. Moving up the stages. Being part of the festival circuit & not having to buy a ticket again.
What do you think the music scene’s like in Reading? Especially for new artists?
It’s a cool place to be a musician. It has it own scene, things like Are You Listening? festival, The Oakford – for somewhere so near to London to have it’s own identity is pretty cool.
What advice would you give to local musicians?
You gotta smash it mate.
Keep playing, keep working, keep writing, keep making things.
Don’t get too jaded when it gets hard – keep going. Remember you’re doing this because you enjoy it, not just because you wanna make it. That has to be at the center of everything – if it isn’t, you shouldn’t be doing it. But if you’re having fun, everything else will follow.
And be on time for stuff [Edit: one of the guys notes that Jen is always late. “I am. Only ever by two minutes though. Well, maybe five”].