Daughtry_Press Image_0-31355451SMLLMultiplatinum recording artist Daughtry has announced additional dates to its first headline UK tour since 2010 following the release of new album ‘Baptized’. Due to popular demand a second date was added for Monday 31st March during the London’s O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire stop.

Daughtry is a multi-platinum rock band fronted by Chris Daughtry, finalist from American Idol Season 5 (2005), Brian Craddock [guitar], Josh Paul [bass], Josh Steely [guitar], Robin Diaz [drums] and Elvio Fernandes [keyboards]. The sextet are thrilled to bring their electrifying live show to sold out venues across the UK including 2 shows in London.

We recently sent them a few questions, and here’s what singer-songwriter Chris Daughtry had to say:

1 – When did you first get into music? What or who Inspired you?

Around the age of 16. A band called Live was my first inspiration.

2 – Who did you grow up listening to, and does that impact on what you create now?

The 90’s grunge era was when I started paying attention, and has influenced me as a writer. These bands also inspired me to go back and listen to their influences like Elton John, Led Zeppelin, etc.

3 – How long have you been playing/writing?

Started writing songs when I was 16 and I learned my instrument at the same time to go along with the writing process.

4 – How often do you play live (include details and links for any upcoming gigs)?

More often than not! (laughs)

5 – What has been your favourite moment in music?

It’s hard to pick one moment, but traveling the world and playing for all our fans is certainly top of the list.

6 – Where is the best place to find you online?


Ben Okafor Interview

Ben Okafor pic0006

1- Tell us bit about the album? 

The album ‘Diverted Traffic’ is the result of my embracing the fact that I cannot be myself and at the same time insist on being accepted by the music industry. I think that there are wider truths about all of us that cannot be encapsulated by tight definitions and easy categories, and the music industry often demands that we be constrained by narrow artistic expressions.

2 – Who have you worked with on the album?

Early albums worked with Producer Bob Lamb, Birmingham, UK (UB40)

More recent albums (Coffee with Lazarus & Diverted Traffic) produced by Harvey Jones, US (Donna Lewis & others) ;Mark Stevens, Northampton (BBC TV & various artists)

3 – Story behind the single ‘I Will Be Back’?

‘I Will be Back’, a track on that album, is born of interactions I have had with others where I have worked really hard to help them to understand the complexities of injustice – particularly those who have been born into privilege without being aware of it. Sometimes such audiences gain clarity about the state of our world community, but at the same time they feel threatened by this, and so opt for an understanding that constrains a vast number of people, including those like me. Meanwhile, in the wider world, wars are raging and injustice is rampant, and I feel the need to go away and regroup. These things are urgent, because we are running out of time….

4 – Any name acts you have toured with / supported?

Desmond Tutu , David Grant, Bruce Cockburn, Van Morrison, Cliff Richard

“Make Poverty History” rally Gleneagles

Billy Bragg, Eddy Izzard, Bianca Jagger

5 – Biggest gigs and highlights of your career to date?

Make Poverty History, Gleneagles Summit

Glastonbury Festival

Bristol River Folk Festival

Cambridge Folk Festival

Tafewa Balewa Square, Lagos

National Stadium, Lagos

National Theatre, Lagos

World Music Festival, Copenhagen

Playing to Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Archbishop Rowan Williams and hundreds of Bishops from around the world at the Lambeth Conference 2008 at Lambeth Palace

Performing a Nelson Mandela speech at the launch in Westminster Abbey of the Make Poverty History Campaign. Other contributors on that occasion included Bonnie Greer, Jools Holland and Pete Postlethwaite

Presentation about children and war at a Commonwealth leaders summit in London in the presence of HM the Queen and Prince Philip.

6 – Where is the best place to find you online?

See full discography on www.benokafor.com

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Rossi Noise

Photography by www.idene.co.uk


1 – When did you first get into music? What or who Inspired you?

We’ve all been into music for as long as we can remember. For myself (Ross, vocals) and my brother (Scott, drums) our inspiration was our Dad. He is also a drummer, and we used to go and watch his band play when we were both kids.

2 – Who did you grow up listening to, and does that impact on what you create now?

Myself, Scott and Neal were all brought up on rock and metal. From really heavy stuff like Pantera to Guns ‘n’ Roses. Gav was brought up on early reggae and dancehall music with him being from London. This has a huge influence on what we do now, as we like to combine all our favourite genres.

3 – How long have you been playing/writing?

As Rossi Noise only a couple of years. We have all been in other bands previously, but this is by far the most fun we’ve had.

4 – How often do you play live (include details and links for any upcoming gigs)?

As much as we possibly can. We’ll be playing Newcastle on 21st March, which is the date our new single is released. This is a sold out show at the Head of Steam. We’re back in London, at the Dublin Castle in Camden on 15th April.. And we’ll be touring after the album is our in October. Dates TBC.

5 – What has been your favourite moment in music?

Playing main stage at Evolution festival in Newcastle was a huge moment for us all. I have always gone as a punter. My first year in attendance I was probably 15, I said ‘One of these days I’ll be on that stage’ 10 years later. It happened. It was a huge buzz at it was our home town crowd.

6 – Where is the best place to find you online?

keep up with us on facebook.com/rossinoise, twitter.com/rossinoise and hear us at www.soundcloud.com/rossinoise


Interview with David del Cid


1 – When did you first get into music? What or who Inspired you?

I think I’ve just reached 20 years since I’ve been playing guitar! I grew up in Latin America, being overwhelmed by tropical music beats and not being happy about it but sometime around 1993 or 1994 I found myself watching MTV (still in its good days) at my uncle’s place – the only family grownup who was cool enough to have cable TV – and suddenly Guns n’ Roses’ Sweet Child o’ Mine video came up… I’ve never looked back ever since! Slash was my saviour; thanks to him I realised that being weird, wild and rebellious was a great way to stand out. Some other axe masters like Eddie Van Halen, Yngwie Malmsteen, Vinnie Moore, George Lynch, Marty Friedman, Michael Schenker or Eric Johnson came about later on but those early days were crucial in developing my Rock n’ Roll attitude.

2 – Who did you grow up listening to, and does that impact on what you create now?

It didn’t take too long for me to discover Judas Priest and for them to become my favourite band ever but I also became really fond of the NWOBHM bands, there are the obvious choices like Maiden, Def Leppard, Diamond Head and Saxon but I do love some obscure bands like Grim Reaper, Demon, Raven, Satan, etc. so I have a lot of old British Heavy Metal influences going on but this music knows no country borders and so there are great bands all over the world, like Accept, Scorpions, MSG, DIO, Manowar, WASP, Iced Earth, Riot, Krokus, Wolf, Baron Rojo, Luzbel, Rata Blanca… hell! I can go on for a while with this.


3 – How long have you been playing/writing?

20 years playing and I have been a songwriter in several bands for about 18 years.

4 – How often do you play live (include details and links for any upcoming gigs)?

We have recently taken a step back as far as gigs are concerned, we’re just going for quality than quantity so we’re more focused on different ways of reaching audiences in the hope that soon there will be enough people all over the UK willing to come and see us play. Until that day, we have a few good shows booked [Metal Gods Festival: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Metal-Gods-Festival/319448908145690, DenFest 2014: https://www.facebook.com/events/531727826880725/?ref=br_tf] for the summer but we’re more than happy to take more offers!


5 – What has been your favourite moment in music?

Well my favourite moments are seeing people moved by our music, there are too many to mention and each of them are very special but if I must pick one it’ll have to be our Japanese friend who was a victim of the 2011 tsunami, he told us that our music helped him overcome the difficult ordeal he’s been through. It’s great to know one can be useful sometimes!



6 – Where is the best place to find you online?






ShoDem SMG

1 – When did you first get into music? What or who Inspired you?

When i was young about 7 or 8 and my mum used to take me to church seeing the emotional change in people when the music started and realising how powerful music can be. Cant forget the African parties where a beat will take everybody somewhere else.  What inspired me as I grew up were the likes of N Dubz, Chip, JME and Tiny Temper based purely on their tenacity and work ethic to ensure they were successful whilst remaining relate able to their audience based on the backgrounds. P Diddy though from a business perspective for me personally is an inspiration branding himself and his artists.

2 – Who did you grow up listening to, and does that impact on what you create now?

When I really started to take music seriously, the likes of 50 cent, Eminem, Jay Z, Biggie and Tupac drew me in with their wordplay and ability to broadcast a message in such an artistic way. UK I would have to say So Solid and Heartless Crew who looking back now were ahead of their time but still opened the door for those from an urban background expanding on their talent.

3 – How long have you been playing/writing?

I dont play or write but with regard to artist development and music publishing i have been doing it seriously for around 3 years, following my own development and finding my place within the industry.

4 – How often do you play live (include details and links for any upcoming gigs)?

Again I don’t personally but recently launched an event – Suga Rush at 229 in Great Portland Street London featuring up and coming UK artist MSL.

5 – What has been your favourite moment in music?

Its hard to pinpoint one because the industry is evolving and I myself am on a journey. Being able to meet different artists from various genres and just being able to explore this and incorporate them into my business and artists.

6 – Where is the best place to find you online?


Facebook: ShoDem ENT

Sound Cloud: ShoDemSMG

Spinnup: ShoDemSMG


Here is our interview with the uber talented Dmarco…

1 – When did you first get into music? What or who Inspired you? 2 SMALL

I can’t remember a time when i wasn’t into music, i believe its in your soul so……..

I have been inspired by artists like Roy Orbison, Leonard Cohen, Bruce Springsteen……artists who can write from the heart about love, loss and everything in-between.

2 – Who did you grow up listening to, and does that impact on what you create now?

I grew up on the back of my parents musical indulgences mainly 60s pop, soul and rock, I wouldn’t say I’m directly influenced by any one artist, I just want to make music people can relate to and I’m always creating a bespoke therapy session for anyone going through a break up or who have had their hearts ripped out and stomped into the ground. 

3 – How long have you been playing/writing?

I have playing guitar in different bands over the years however i wanted to concentrate on my own career and thats been over the last four years, I wanted to do it properly and give everything to it, building the blocks before any releases or proper live shows…..

I have been writing since i was 14, I picked up a guitar and after staring at it for some time i knew i could get all release all my emotions and thoughts through it. The guitar had two strings and missing the back….eventually my parents got mad listening to me learning how to play it and bought me a better model.

4 – How often do you play live (include details and links for any upcoming gigs)?

This is all very new, were building a killer live show and we going all out to give the fans the best return for investing their time in DMARCO, I do know my management are on the phone booking venues for 2014 tour which may start in Japan all going well. 

5 – What has been your favourite moment in music?

Completing my debut album and seeing the buzz around the project not only the fans but the industry itself, I am very happy to be working with great people, namely my producer Martin Aelred who i owe so much, we’ve had great times including traveling through europe recording and generally rocking out causing orchestrated mayhem 

6 – Where is the best place to find you online?

www.wearedmarco.com is our official website and we have links to all our social media there.


1 – When did you first get into music? What or who Inspired you?

Hello all, we’d like to introduce ourselves, we are Byron and Trix and currently make up the main components of rock band Jokerbats.

Originally, we began to make music when circumstances threw us together at a local event. Then after a number of chance encounters, it soon appeared as though our individual destinies were on a collision course, inevitably to a musical convergence of passion and dedication for our craft.

Even in our initial meetings everything seemed somehow right, fated even, to make of us one combined artistic and musical being, and the spawn of that being..Jokerbats Band !

Inspiration is varied, especially lots of horror things in music, movies, TV, video games, comics and more, ranging from spoofy to dead serious. Also we were both fortunate enough to have been brought up by families who had great taste in music, particularly rock, which inspired us to want to make music.

2 – Who did you grow up listening to, and does that impact on what you create now?

Brought up on a wide variety of music thanks to our families, from the 60’s to the present day, we have grown to believe in the importance of melody and a strong chorus/hook in song-writing and also in crafted musical production.

For our band Jokerbats the main influences growing up have been absorbed from the more theatrical and horror- influenced artists in rock, heavy rock and metal, such as Rob Zombie, Ozzy Osbourne, Alice Cooper and Lordi among others. Often creating original, artistic, creative, alternative worlds and characters that are theatrical, wild, decadent, dangerous and sometimes quite tongue in cheek. Most often lots of fun. Also they have created stand out work, and in some cases classic, during the course of their careers. This is something that we, Jokerbats, also want to achieve.

3 – How long have you been playing/writing?

Well, Byron began writing music in his early teenage years, beating out songs on his battered old acoustic guitar. The interest was then as it is now… ‘feel out a hook and melody of seductive pull.’  Days spent bashing away, improvising and writing lines off the cuff, ’til eventually tumbling onto something. A simple phrase or cool hook line which then could be a starting point for the real hard work of turning it into something more, of writing the full song with well-developed lyrical lines and the perfect accompanying ‘Jokerbats-style’.. catchy guitar, bass and drums.

4 – How often do you play live (include details and links for any upcoming gigs)?

In London we have had great gigs at The Underworld and Dublin Castle in Camden, Bull and Gate in Kentish Town and many other venues. More recently though, we have concentrated our time mainly on developing our skills in the studio, song-writing and in video production. We are currently in the process of developing the Jokerbats live show for later in 2014. We are creating an exciting live musical and visual experience and are very much looking forward to taking Jokerbats on the road.

5 – What has been your favourite moment in music?

We went on a tour of Germany and Switzerland a little while ago which was a lot of fun. Taking us from Berne Switzerland over the Alps and ending with a great gig in Berlin!

6 – Where is the best place to find you online?

Our website.. http://www.evilzgate.com/
Facebook.. https://www.facebook.com/JokerbatsBand
Vampire Video.. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4s5DnwlzNbQ
YouTube Channel.. https://www.youtube.com/user/EvilZgate
Twitter.. https://twitter.com/Jokerbats

The new single is ‘Vampire’. It has hard rocking catchy guitar and a cool catchy vocal chorus. To get a good idea of what we are about, watch the video. People are saying that it is spooky addictive fun, artistically visual, not to mention a bit sexy. It has some cool animation too.

The video is available to watch now on youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4s5DnwlzNbQ and the single will be released on the 24th February to download from all the best online stores like iTunes, Amazon etc etc.


1 – When did you first get into music? What or who Inspired you?

I was ‘made’ to take piano lessons from the age of nine! I’m glad I did! I had an elderly music teacher – Miss Wilson – who I will never forget; although she was a very ‘by the book’ teacher, she was incredibly encouraging. However, when I discovered that you didn’t always have to follow the music books I withdrew a little from the theory and worked on composing and writing. I was inspired by things happening around me, my friends, the way people made me feel, the way life made me feel. There was no particular artist I was drawn to but while I was growing up I was ‘subjected’ to a great deal of music including The Beatles, Queen, Bowie, the Stones, The Eagles, Fleetwood Mac. I eventually learnt to realise I was drawn to rock music, particularly that which was melodic.

2 – Who did you grow up listening to, and does that impact on what you create now?

As answered above…in many ways it does impact on my writing now but perhaps more because I still listen to a lot of music from those eras and appreciate them more fully as being artistic creations rather than simply ‘songs’.

3 – How long have you been playing/writing?

I’ve played piano since I was nine. I took singing lessons for about a year when I was 21 or so – my singer, Adrienne Ellis was a professional opera singer and pianist who I have a lot to be grateful to for; she allowed me to participate in concerts she held for her students and I was inspired my her manner, motivation and teaching. I have been writing songs since I was about 14.

4 – How often do you play live (include details and links for any upcoming gigs)?

We love to play as much as possible. We are gigging in a local pub next weekend and have a few more lined up. At the busiest times of year we can often be gigging once a week.

5 – What has been your favourite moment in music?

I really enjoyed playing the 100 Club and the Willow Festival in 2012. Those are two massive highlights for me.

6 – Where is the best place to find you online?

Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/DerechoRock

Akua Kamau


1 – When did you first get into music? What or who Inspired you?

I was introduced to the arts from very early in my childhood when I was taught to do antimocassin by a friend who had learned it at her school in her Arts and Crafts class. Music was a very important subject in high school and my interested was further stimulated when in at the age of 15yrs I was given my first guitar by my mom. As it so happened there was an Englishman who conducted free guitar lessons after school for the students. This was a very exciting time for me. However after leaving high school I more or less put music aside and pursued academic studies leading up to a Bachelor of Science from  Jamaican university and later an MBA from University of Wales/Manchester Business School in Financial Management. During the next thirty or so years I was never very far from the arts or music although I wasn’t actually playing the guitar. For a while I wrote poetry and sang (am not much of a singer). However during 2009 I was speaking with a high school friend and we were reminiscing about high school life and I stated that I am sorry that I did not continue with the guitar and we were also speaking about an upcoming annual past student reunion and I said it would be such a great thing if there was a past student band who would play at the function and he volunteered to play if we could get a past student band together and I said that there would be no way that they would be onstage having fun while I had to sat in the audience. He and his younger brother and quite a few other past students from our cohort are professional musicians and quite coincidentally I had played in our high school band with a few of them, on and off for a while back then. With my passion for music rekindled, I went to a music store the very next day and purchased two acoustic guitars (one for myself and the other for my teen-aged son) and started private lesson with a guitar instructor. I found that some of the chords were still very fresh in my mind, however finger conditioning and finger independence were very challenging and it took a while to get that back. To cut a long story short, I enrolled at Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts and continued my training during which time my playing improved and my passion for the guitar began to become a bit of an obsession. At the end of my work contract (end of January 2013) I decided that it was time to return to the guitar this time on a full-time basis and as we say, the rest is now history. There were a number of persons along the way,  who inspired me commencing with my friend Mr Gerald Belnavis with whom I was speaking back in 2009 about the then upcoming annual reunion, there is also guitar-god Jimy Graham, dear friend Mr Earl Septii Panton producer and music executive, who introduced me to Jimy and the list goes on.

2 – Who did you grow up listening to, and does that impact on what you create now?

Most of the songs of my childhood were reggae songs of the day by such artistes as Bob Marley, Dennis Brown, Peter Tosh. However there were overseas artistes by The O’Jays, The Temptations, The Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, Hugh Masekela and of course Manu Dibango with his Soul Makossa. There were countless others as well, too numerous to mention. They ALL influenced my current taste for music and the music that I create. The doo-wop groups and the balladeers gave me rhythm, and soul, however Marley, Brown, Tosh, Masekela and Dibango gave me my identity and taste for the African sound and unquestionably are the most influential.

3 – How long have you been playing/writing?

I learned to play the guitar in 1974/75 I have been writing poetry since the late 1980’s even though I am unable to say where the bulk of such material is, today. In terms of actually writing music, it started in earnest during 2011 at which time I started to experiment with sounds and chord progressions.

4 – How often do you play live (include details and links for any upcoming gigs)?

Since commencing on this musical journey in 2009 most of my time has been in the studio however I have managed to make a few appearances and my favourite venue has been at the Cannon Ball Cafe. A very small, very homely environment. My next appearance is scheduled to be at a Count Ossie and The Mystic Revellations of Rastafri Tribute set to take place in the month of March in St Mary.

5 – What has been your favourite moment in music?

To date my favourite moment has been the reception I got at The Cannon Ball cafe. I had a lot fo gun playing for the audience. I also had a lot of fun playing at my Alma Mater’s reunion in 2013 as well.

6 – Where is the best place to find you online?

Everything about me and my music can be found at www.akuakamaumusic.com and I suggest that a visit The Back Room as that is where I tend to share my personal thoughts. It is also a very good idea to read the liner notes for each song.


We recently asked Pedro Alves Duarte from the Latin-Jazz band ‘Kilindu’ some questions about the past and the present, and are given an insight into what the future may hold for the band!


When did you first get into music? What or who Inspired you?

Pedro Alves Duarte, composer and guitar player for KILINDU answers the questions: Me personally I started out at age 4. From an early age music found me trough the gifts my parents gave me on my 4th birthday. A cheap cream colored guitar, a plastic saxophone and a toy accordion with paper bellows, the guitar made my day and the next few decades after!
My inspiration to play was Eric Clapton and Carlos Santana.

Who did you grow up listening to, and does that impact on what you create now?

PAD: I heard Carlos Santana, the Portuguese Fado player and one of the most great guitar players that ever lived Carlos Paredes, also heard Chat Atkins, and Hendrix.

How long have you been playing/writing?

PAD: Started at 4, I’m 38 so it has been 34 years now. Been writing my own music even before I could actually play anyone else’s!

The teenage years were plentiful of odd hour practices and rehearsing, playing Pop Rock, RnB and Blues in local pubs and small venues, composing tunes and songs. Things were picking up form and pace and I started recording in studios and getting my stripes on being a recording player.

A couple of years into self learning and I decided to attend formal music lessons.

Studied a year at the local conservatoire, after that on a professional modern music school for 3 years where I had my first lessons in Jazz and Fusion and then also attended Hot Clube Portugal jazz school and after that completed a Master with Berklee College of Music.

How often do you play live (include details and links for any upcoming gigs)?

The tour for the next album will start June and run until December. We are currently booking gigs as we go so we have not closed the agenda. Hope we can also book some gigs in UK at the summer. Any promoter can reach us and talk with us about a gig as we are completely independent.

What has been your favourite moment in music?

PAD: It was the time when I saw the pride in my Fathers eyes after a big venue that I organized and played at, it was the first time he ever saw me play on stage and the last as he passed away not much time after. Should have talk to him more that day…

Also In 2009 the day I founded my company named “EMMA Actividades Musicais” that is mainly orientated for music education in countries part of “CPLP” – Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries”, creating music literature in Portuguese and creating and developing music bands and artists. It currently employs 15 people.

And also the day I got married!

Where is the best place to find you online?

PAD: You can find Kilindu at www.kilindu.com and there you have the contacts to book shows and get our music, can follow us on twitter @kilindu1 and on facebook.com/kilindufadonovo