Saturday, September 17, 2022

DJ Interviews: Billy Browne

 Heres my interview with guitarist Billy Browne

"I was the lead singer and guitarist for Friends of Gavin in the 80s

We supported the likes of REM, The Alarm, Boomtown Rats among others on tours, as well as headlining in our own right and famous venues in the UK.

We split up and in 91 I got involved with a well known Dance act, and ended up not just playing harmonica on the song but co writing it, and it was a huge club hit in Europe as well as getting national radio play. That was Come Alive by Orchestra JB 

I then took a break from music and got married. Ten years ago I got back into music and very quickly was being  played on loads of stations all over and getting number 1's in various charts. I also recorded various covers for Specialized and Teenage Cancer Trust to much acclaim.

The last couple of years I've had number 1's with well known national stations and hits in the Heritage Charts with Mike Read. 

I started doing a radio show about 16 months ago, Billy Brown, The Housewives' Favourite on The Moaning Show which is played on 39 stations, which includes many FM Stations. It's also on Mixcloud.".

How'd you get started in music?

I started at 13 with friends and I immediately sang, and couldn't play any instruments. 

I used to go to a lot of gigs and always loved music. 

It was later that Friends of Gavin formed and I took up the guitar late, but soon adopted a style for Rythm Guitar 

Who are your inspirations or influences? 

My biggest influence is the Band Television, but was a huge fan of The Stranglers, The Clash , The Church among others.

What advice would you offer aspiring performers?

If you're in it for the money then forget it,  as streaming has killed music. It's the only industry where we don't get paid for our art. Streaming has devalued music in my opinion and something needs to be done about it and quick.

How do you set yourselves apart from other bands or singers? 

You don't have to have a great voice. What you need is style and you can be different...being different and interesting is good. Tom Verlaine us a great example. 

Any new gigs or albums in the future?

At the moment I'm focusing on my Radio show and taking a little break from music. I'm also planning to Iive in Spain where I'll probayou get a Band together. 

Friends of Gavin did reform a couple of years ago and we did two sell out London gigs, but sadly egos got in the way and it didn't quite happen. However, we did a cover of Scarborough Fair to much acclaim, and it's going to be featured in a Movie, The Vegan Vampires at the end of this year, and released as a single.

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