Interview: George Lyons

While the general form of an interview is a discussion with a band or artist that can already be regarded as successful, there is much talent below the surface of the industry. TGF's interviews with Cabbage and The Bohos have discussed releases, gigs and continuing to make inroads into the eyes and ears of fans, but here is a developing music talent that has plenty of ambition to pursue a dream.

Tell us about yourself…

I’m George Lyons, 22, from Greater Manchester, I’m aspiring to be somewhat involved with music, whether that be a solo artist or maybe even a front man of a band, but I’m really wanting to get the ball rolling. I first picked up the guitar when I was around 17 and I finally decided to have a go of my Dad’s acoustic, I haven’t really looked back since. For the last couple of years, I have been playing open mic nights and helping my Dad out at his local gigs whilst structuring my own songs and ideas.

So what does your Dad do and how has that influenced you?

My Dad primarily plays lead guitar in a couple of bands but he also does his own acoustic sets in local pubs. I was influenced by hearing him play covers of songs whilst stamping his own twist and melody with vocals. To be honest, I always thought playing guitar was out of my reach but as soon as I started the basics, I didn’t stop! Listening to what my Dad plays from his era has widened what I’d listen to naturally; I’ll listen to more contemporary stuff but I also play records from Johnny Cash and the likes of The Rolling Stones.

What’s the next step?

The next step for me personally is to find a sound, I’m fine with music just sounding stripped back as acoustic but then after that stage, I’ll be looking for a definite sound on the electric. I’m not saying I’m going to invent a new sound because I think there’s not much more you can do than what’s already out there, but there’s still enough potential to be recognised nowadays. So, I want to be working on that stage first and then in the future, I’ll see what getting into a recording studio is like and working with a producer. I know that a song can have a totally different feel when it’s been in a studio. That’s what I’d like to do next, bit of a vision.

And what about as a front man?

I’ve had a go at being a front man for a couple of bands, one of them did gigs, the other didn’t even make it past the jamming around stage, I’d still definitely not rule just being a singer again, I’d just need people to be interested in the music so that a band could be formed and they can bring their ideas to the table as well.

So what can we expect from you?

When, or if I do find right platform, it’d be nice to think people could expect my music to be distinguished without ramming it down anyone’s ears, I have an idea that my music would tap into youth culture but not so much that it’s only for youth, I reckon there’s potential for songs to still be made by an artist that can cover a variety of different eras.
Currently I have about 3 songs that are finished as far as the acoustic sound is concerned, but countless ideas for other songs, so I still need to put a structure to a lot of the ideas so then I’ll have more of my own songs.

Who do you see as musical influences?

That’s a tough one, in terms of songwriters over the years I’ve loved Kelly Jones (Stereophonics), Johnny Borrell (Razorlight), Noel Gallagher of course, Richard Ashcroft, Liam Fray and Guy Garvey (Elbow). Then in terms of performance I love The Who, Genesis, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Buffalo Springfield. Solo artisits I’ve taken inspiration from are George Harrison, Phil Collins, Morrissey, Lou Reed, Paul Simon. A mixed bag but lots to take from!

What is your style?

I’d say my style fits into the alternative rock genre, I do like when a band finds a bit of a weird sound and make it work, I can imagine being quite hard to do as well. I like the idea of pushing boundaries, surprising people a bit, hopefully I can add that too.

What are you listening to at the minute?

This can change all the time, but one of my favourite new albums is Sundara Karma’s new one, I think it’s good, there’s not really one bad song on there. The Amazons too are a band who’ve really pushed on recently, I also like a lot of Tame Impala’s stuff.

Where can we hear your stuff?

It’s a real case of watch this space! I want to get my stuff out there as soon as possible but it needs to be spot on, I’m hoping it’ll be ready soon.

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