Ones to watch: The Gregory S. Davies Band from Oswestry
Dan Jones catches up with the region's best unsigned acts and meets the stars of tomorrow
An Oswestry-based singer/songwriter has teamed up with an Americana-styled backing band to form The Gregory S. Davies Band, playing songs straight out of the Old West.
The five-piece have been playing together since autumn last year but are quickly building momentum, selling out venues such as Oswestry's Iron works.
They are keen to build on their momentum and will be among the star acts at the Market Drayton Folk and Blues Festival on May 25.
The band were the brainchild of the group's namesake musician Greg Davies, a multi-talented performer who doubles as band vocalist, guitarist and pianist.
"The way I'd written it (his musical repertoire) was such that I needed a band to actually perform it," laughed Greg.
So what did he do? Flipped through his contact book and made some calls.
"I was lucky that one of my mates from uni was a good drummer, my landlord was a great bass player and a lad that I've known since primary school was a great guitarist. It all came together."
Those friends-turned-band members are Sam Dougherty on drums, John Griffiths on double bass, Dan Roberts on guitar and Melissa Timmis on violin.
And come together they did. Having already recorded and released debut album 'Santiago' in January the band are now touring with it.
The album has an echo of the old country sound found in the depths of the American south, which is blended seamlessly with notes from blues and jazz music (listen to 'Rat Trap'), creating a unique sound.
Elsewhere in the album, distinct Hispanic and gypsy folk overtones (listen to 'P.P-68' or 'Perestroika') are layered over the country, creating lively reels.
The band's successes haven't stopped with their live shows, BBC Radio Shropshire have paid the band special attention with extensive air play over the past few months; culminating in them being invited to play a live session on air.
"It was great, we played four songs … ironically one of the ones we didn't play just a few weeks later they named song of the month."
In March 'Rat Trap' was awarded the much deserved title 'Song of the Month'. That led to some 'international' recognition with BBC Radio Wales also picking up the track.
"It's a great, great feeling to turn on the radio in the day and hear one of your songs playing".
The band will be playing the Market Drayton Folk and Blues Festival on May 25th, tickets range from £13 for the day or £31.50 for the full 3 days. Tickets are available from www.rockandbowlfestival.com/tickets
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