The Gadsdens
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The Gadsdens

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""Hot New Talent Alert: The Gadsdens""

Newcomers The Gadsdens like to describe their music as "Tracy Chapman on uppers and Stevie Nicks on downers," and that's a pretty good way to sum up their sound. The Gadsdens combine melodic sensibilities with a heartfelt delivery that results in poignant pop music that will move you.

Founding members of this London outfit are Jody (vocals, guitar) and Simon (Keys) who turned their friendship into a musical partnership in 2006, leading to the introduction of Barney on lead guitar and David on drums.

Their MySpace page lists artists like Tori Amos, R.E.M., Sufjan Stevens, The Carpenters and PJ Harvey as some of the people that have influenced them. The Gadsdens also remind me of Passenger with Jody's idiosyncratic crooning and the group's wistful melodies.

Listen The Gadsdens' "The Sailor Song". It is an epic slice of wistful Brit pop with its sweeping piano riff, glowing strings and Jody's emotive, vibrato vocals. Head over to their MySpace page to also hear and download the tango-inspired "Stalkers' Tango" and the gorgeous cover of Bronski Beat's classic "Small Town Boy" that will give you goose bumps. Also, check out one of their newer tunes, titled "Trouble In Mind," which is a more elaborate, layered production. -


The music success equation is quite a simple formula. Musical brevity and talent must be backed up by good looks. Rihanna didn’t get a number one with Ave Maria. Kylie Minogue can’t warble every octave on the chart. And Britney Spears’ musical talents tend to lie under her C-cup. Lucky then that UK up-and-comers (don’t you just fucking hate that term?) The Gadsdens have both qualities in spades. Though they’ll do their best deny, deny, deny. “Are we hot? I think you’ve been misguided by the wonders of Photoshop, for instance our drummer has a glass eye,” the lead singer chimes. Well, at least they, along with the British giggers, agree with the other half of the musical necessity: they’re a fucking decent set of performers. Elements of pop. Elements of blue-eyed soul. Sing-along hooks, tinky-tonk pianos. Jody Gadsden’s wavering awkward voice (yes his surname is the bands name, clever, no? Just like Alison Goldfrapp and Jon Bon Jovi)… on paper they’re seemingly flawless, and I‘m doing my best with no reward to find said flaws until… wait, is that a Robbie Williams-replica swallow tattoo?

Jody Gadsden: Why of course. He is a national treasure and aesthetically everything I aspire to be.

Dazed Digital: Do you want to be sex symbols like he *ahem* thinks he is too? (let us not forget his housewife-favourite topless calendar all but a decade ago)
JG: Naturally we’d rather our music led to favourable articles and reviews than our looks…

DD: Ok, let’s keep it music…
JG: Yes

DD: You're not quite pop - a bit too off-kilter - so what are you?
JG: I think it’s better not to completely fit the mould. It’s good to keep the essential elements of what a good song is whilst keeping to your own style and sound. How dull would it be to not be slightly off-kilter? Most of our influences are artists that don’t always fit the mould.

DD: You look like East End Indie kids but that's not your sound...
JG: We all live around there mainly so it’s hard not to end up dressing a little in keeping with the area. I believe, whilst we‘ve still got figures we may as well flaunt our 34inch legs with the best slim fit jeans Topman can offer. That’s the crux of the East End Indie look isn’t it?

DD: If your studio wanted you to dress and look more "soul" would you do it?
JG: I’m not even sure what a more "soul" person would dress like?

DD: Babyphat
JG: …!

DD: You're constantly compared to Tracy Chapman, she's a woman and you're not… what does that say about your voice?
JG: It’s not an insult in the slightest, I’ve always used my singing voice in a feminine way – my delivery is less direct than the usual male offerings, I falsetto, and trill and vibrato and sometimes over complicate simple lines. I’ve always preferred the female voice and the way certain female musicians like Joni Mitchell and PJ Harvey annunciate and express their vocals.

DD: You're also compared to Michael Stipe - very different to Chapman - what's the weirdest comparison and which comparison has been the strangest?
JG: I liked the Michael Stipe comparison – he is one of my all time musical idols. I’ve been compared vocally to Antony Hegarty too, which was also great. None have been too weird, I suppose Tracy Chapman, what with her being a lady and me not, gets that accolade

DD: There's not loads out there about you, what would you definitely want people to know?
JG: We did have some extensive google pages going on but I think the town of Gadsden in Alabama, USA, have seen this and notified their tourist board! They seem to be winning the fight at the moment.
All I’d want people to know is that we are a band hell-bent on writing and producing great pop songs that will stand the test of time. I want to see one of our songs covered by an X Factor contestant in 2020 – that would be amazing….

The Gadsdens are continuing their London tour throughout 2009.
- Dazed & Confused

"2008: XO's Top Songs Of The Year"

10. The Sailor Song The Gadsdens UK
Jody Gadsden's vocals make my hairs stand on end. He is the best male voice to emerge from 2008 and when they finally release the album, I hope The Gadsdens will leave this mix alone. I love way it breathes - there's a nice, airy reverb and the twilight strings are lovely.
- xo London


"Sailor Song" - Been played on BBC Radio 1
"Sailor Song & Heartbreaker" - Been played live on BBC Berkshire
"Trouble In Mind" - Been played on BBC 6 Music
"Lent" - Been played on RTL & Delta Radio



2009 saw the band start the year by doing an acoustic performance for BBC’s “Introducing” show at the beginning of February, followed up by a play on Huw Stephens show on BBC Radio 1 “In New Music We Trust” in March.
Through their new recordings they have also had plays on RTL in Eastern Europe, Delta Radio in Germany, and radio stations as far a-field as Turkey.

They have also had the opportunity of doing a photo shoot with fashion photographer “Jean-Francois Carly” who has previously worked with such artists as “Interpol” and “M.I.A”.

The beginning of February also saw The Gadsdens as the unsigned act of the month on sync’ company “Brandamp’s” website.
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The band are well supported by The King Kong Klub in Germany and are to feature on their compilation CD later in the year and are currently featured on the Visit Britain Rocks website in Canada promoting the UK and its music scene to College Students all over Canada, with their song “Lent” also appearing on a compilation CD of the same name:-

2008 saw The Gadsdens share the same bill as “Cherry Ghost” at The Manchester Academy, they played “The Secret Garden Party” Festival in the summer, supported “The Hidden Cameras” from Canada in London and have cemented themselves as one of the unsigned live acts to watch in the capital.