Photo Credit: Ken Harrison Photography
Gucci Pimp have played at both Bearwood Shuffle I and Bearwood Shuffle V. What’s it like playing at Lightwoods Park Bandstand and what do the Bearwood Shuffles mean to you?
Adam – It’s a great honour to play the Shuffle twice and to grace the wonderful Bandstand. Most bandstands are now neglected so it’s great to see this one used for what it was built for. Our hats go off to all the organisers who work so hard on the shuffle; they have brought a great community feel to Bearwood which is exactly what was needed.
Steve – The whole atmosphere is great and great to see so many families enjoying the day. It’s also great as my young son can come along and watch us play though it seems he has better stage moves than the rest of us.
Dave – It’s great for us to play to a different audience and also a different type of venue. We’re more used to sweaty dark venues so to play where there is fresh air is something of a novelty. Though the smell from the burger bar made us all feel a little peckish.
Matt - It’s great for us as we get to play to people who probably would never have seen us play. It’s also a novelty playing only 5 minutes from where we live.
Photo Credit: Ken Harrison Photography
Gucci Pimp took a 12 month hiatus and are now back stronger than ever. Why did you make that decision, how have you changed as a band and what does the future hold for Gucci Pimp?
Matt – It was enforced decision to stop playing due to an issue I had with my voice. It had been the first time in 20 years of playing in bands that I had, had to take time off which was very frustrating not only for me but for the rest of the band. It now makes me appreciate playing more and just great to be back out playing shows. We’re now planning on getting into the studio to record an album which will hopefully see the light of day early next year with maybe a single or two prior to that.
Steve – We didn’t want to come back after nearly 12 months away with the same set of songs so we took the time we had to write and to also try a few different things which are now hopefully coming to fruition in the new stuff. Our manager is lining up more shows and we’ve been booked to play a festival in Wales that sees us share the same stage as T’Pau so that should be different. Not the usual type of band we play with put it that way
Dave – The one way we have changed is that we now have more pedals than we did 12 months ago. Not sure how they all work yet but they create a mighty new sound for us, but also means it takes Matt twice as long to set up and pack down.
Where does the name Gucci Pimp come from?
Matt – It’s from a song I wrote for an old band I was in and it’s about us all being wage slaves. Not sure I could remember how it went now though. When me and Ad formed this band we were obviously stuck for any inspiration so this name stuck.
Adam – We have thought of changing it over the years but never settled on anything we like especially as all of our ideas get vetoed by Dave.
Dave – That’s because all Ad’s ideas sound like they should be on Waylon Jennings album.
Adam - We did once get a threatening email from a rapper in the States who has Gucci as his name. I think he heard we were from downtown Bearwood so he never bothered us again.....Bless.
Which artist/s are your biggest influences? What’s the best album you’ve bought this year?
Adam – Difficult one to answer. If you were to ask the band they would say I’m Americana boy. My ears get submitted to far too many things to mention but favourites are Ryan Adams, Bruce Springsteen, Gaslight Anthem, Black Keys, Sigur Ros. The best two albums I have heard recently and would highly recommend are Algiers by Calexico and Rise ye sinking ships by We are Augustine’s truly amazing records. I have also dived into the world of Ska and Dub. The likes of the Pioneers and Toot and the Maytals can now be heard coming from the Pimp HQ on a regular basis.
Dave – I’m the Brit pop boy so the likes of Blur and The Stone Roses but Ad’s persistants to listen to new stuff has meant bands like Band Of Horses and Brighteyes now appear on my car stereo. In fact an album I’d recommend would be Mirage Rock by Band Of Horses is a great album.
Matt – Too many to list but Joy division and anything from Detroit. The Motown sounds mixed with the garage rock of The Stooges and the MC5 keep me happy. I Wanna Be Your Dog by The Stooges has to be one of the best songs ever written. If only it was ours.
Steve – Stevie Wonder and Terrovision. Now that would be an interesting collaboration.
Photo Credit: Ken Harrison PhotographyWhere and when can we see Gucci Pimp play next?
Flapper and Firkin, Birmingham, Friday 12th July.
New Quay Festival, Wales, Saturday 3rd August.
What’s the band’s connection with Bearwood? What do you think of the live music scene in Bearwood?
Adam – Me and Matt emigrated here about 5 years ago from other parts of the city to soak up the atmosphere and the culinary delights of 101 takeaways and also to be closer to Dave who then decided to move. Not sure what he was trying to tell us.
Matt – The free music is great and that’s testament to the organisers of the Shuffle and the Party in the Park, but it would be great to maybe see the Bear utilised more as they have a great room upstairs and we wouldn’t have far to lug all our gear.
Dave – We have fond memories of the bear from years ago when we were in another band together and we supported a Sex Pistols tribute band. That day will live with us forever especially the sight of two over 5o year old punks moshing at the front.
Adam – I’ve blanked that out of my memory.
Steve – I wasn’t even in that band but that sounds painful.
Please tell us your Bearwood All-Star. In other words what, who or where in Bearwood makes your smile?
Adam – The people of Bearwood make me smile. There are certainly a few characters that patrol the High St on a weekend. I also think Warley Woods is such a wonderful place to have on our door step. I love just sitting on one of the benches and watching the world go by. Well when I’m not chasing after my 20 month old daughter.
Dave – Got to be Karachi. I use to go there so much that I was on first name terms, and never had to queue for a kebab. Now I’m a fitness freak........Not!
Matt – I’ll agree with Ad the parks are pretty special and a great place to just chill out. Also some of the public houses serve some very fine beer.
Steve – Can’t forget about the shuffle.
We like to ask everyone this question. What makes Lightwoods Chippy’s chips orange?
Adam – I have to admit that I haven’t dived into the true Black Country delicacy of orange chips. Should I feel ashamed of myself?
Matt – Tango
Dave – I used to know the people who owned the chippy and they once told me but too many years of rock and roll has taken its toll on the old memory.
Steve – Maybe they tap into the fake spray salon and drain of any excess spray. I don’t know it’s late and I’ve had a long day!