Where are you based?
I moved to Sheffield from London two years ago. I absolutely love being back in the north and being part of the thriving music scenes in Sheffield and nearby cities Leeds, Hull, York, Nottingham and Manchester where I am often shooting gigs.
Where do you work? What do you do?
I’m a music photographer and am currently on maternity leave but hope to be back shooting music after summer or when things resume to normal after the current Covid-19 crisis.
Last year I worked on some cool projects like the photo book in IDLES ‘Live at Bataclan’ album and worked as part of the official teams at Latitude and Reading Festival.
AF Gang also keeps me very busy, we started as a space for IDLES fans to meet but it has grown into so much more. With over 25,000 members it has become a safe space for talking openly about mental health and supporting new music.
We recently launched a website www.afgang.co.uk which includes a 10 track weekly playlist #KINKYLINKY curated by our members, a merch store and we have just started interviewing bands. The first being Sheffield based grunge rock trio Nervous Pills.
What are you listening to?
I’ve been lucky enough to have my hands on a copy of IDLES album number three so that is currently on repeat in our house.
How do you discover new music?
I discover new music in lots of different ways. Often through shows I’m shooting at indie venues and also through people I know and work with in the new music scene, whether that is fellow photographers Carolina Furolo (London), Shitshow Dave (LA) and Kevin W Condon ( New York) and also promoters such as Bad Vibrations and Felix White from Yala Records, they always seems to put great bands on so it’s always good to see who they have playing as they always seem to give hot new bands their first shows.
What formats do you usually listen to? LP, CD, Cassette, Digital, Streaming Services and why?
Especially now I’m at home on maternity leave , Spotify and things like Bandcamp are how I will often first listen to a band, but will always buy records to support bands that I love. We do have a cd player in our car though which is where we listen to all the 00’s indie classics when we driving.
Where do you do most of your music listening?
As I’m on maternity leave with a 12 week old baby I am home a lot so that’s where I listen to music. I do go running and listening to music whilst running is one of my faves as you can really lose yourself in an album.
How do you find and listen to pre-release music?
I find new music through bands that I work with, through recommendations from AF Gang members and also Steve Lamacq’s 6 Music show is key for new music as he seems to champion all the kind of bands that I love! Working in the industry I will often get sent music directly from bands and also form PR’s and managers pre release.
What are your frustrations with listening to music digitally? Any benefits?
I get a lot of links in e-mails and don’t always listen to them, if I get sent a link to something and I have heard of the band through somebody I know I will have a listen, for example two friends of mine who have a similar music taste are Lisa Wright at DIY Magazine and Rhianne Thompson (BBC Music Introducing), if either of them mention a band I will definitely listen to them as they know their stuff when it comes to new music.
For me a link to stream is ideal as it is easy and instant, realistically I never actually download files and add to iTunes, which I probably used to do a lot.
How do you keep track of everything you are listening to?
Often just through creating playlists, and for me if I like something new I will often just play it on repeat so there’s no forgetting it! For instance I played Talk Show’s Fast and Loud about 500 times when it came out last year!
Do you tip other people off to new music? How?
As a music photographer when I shoot a new band and share photos on Instagram this will be my way of sharing my new faves, also AF Gang is a huge community and if there’s something I love I will share it on there, as will all the other members sharing their new tips.
Anything you want to “promote”?
Until I went on maternity leave I was managing Yowl from south London, I worked on their latest EP release ‘Atrophy’ with Scott Lewis from Clue Records. He is the biggest champion of new music in Leeds and works with so many great bands. The ‘Atrophy’ EP is pure genius, they are one of the best bands in the UK right now without a doubt, this EP really shows them for their incredible lyricism and songwriting. Their live shows also are pretty crazy so I can;t wait to see them again live after the current Covid-19 crisis is over.
Also got to give a shout out to some legends on the Sheffield Music Scene – promoters Greg Archer and Tariq Navarone who are always the first ones to put on the best new bands and also local bands Nervous Pills and Any Old Iron.