Based in the small town of Kenmare in County Kerry, guitarist and songwriter Laurie Shaw spent much of his childhood on the Wirral before moving to the south of Ireland. Raised in a musical household, his multi-instrumentalist father Chris ‘Teepee’ Shaw was a member of various bands in the area during the late 1970’s and early 1980’s, performing with the likes of Dalek I Love You, Some Detergents and Sense Of Vision.
Having access to his father’s equipment, Laurie began recording albums after school from the age of 14. A decade later his back catalogue is somewhat bulging, with only a fraction of it available on Bandcamp. Releasing at least a couple of albums each year, his latest efforts include Scared Of Dogs (released in April) and “Alright” (due out on 5th August).
In the first of our series of interviews with the Future Yard line-up, we spoke to Laurie Shaw about his music and his upcoming appearance at the festival.
For someone who may never have come across your work before, how would you describe your music? And if you could recommend them one of your songs, which one would that be?
My music is sort of a Frankenstein’s monster of 60’s pop, 70’s glam, and a bit of 90’s indie with other genres like soul, hip hop and disco floating in and out. Lyrically, I’m very inspired by people like Jarvis Cocker, Jake Thackrey and Nick Cave.
My music is predominantly album-based and I record these at my parents house which is situated up a mountain. I like to experiment with the process of record making and exploring ideas of nostalgia, philosophy and lusty pursuits.
If I was to recommend one song I’d say ‘That’s Life!’ off the Year Zero album.
Who or what have been the biggest influences on your sound?
There are too many to name but I suppose I identify quite a lot with Ty Segall as regards having a big back catalogue of conceptual bedroom albums. Really, it’s all about getting a finished product that carries the same amount of emotional weight as the albums I have a real fondness for like Jim Sullivan’s U.F.O, Graham Coxon’s A+E, The Smiths’ Meat is Murder, or Baxter Dury’s Happy Soup (just to name a very small few of my faves). My biggest non-musical influence is probably Stanley Kubrick.
How well do you know Birkenhead and wider Wirral area?
I was born in Arrow Park Hospital and lived in Frankby until I was ten so I know the area quite well, even if it is through a bit of a nostalgic summer haze.
What’s your favourite festival memory, either as a performer or as a fan?
Probably playing at Body & Soul last year and it not raining for the whole weekend.
Apart from yourself, who would you recommend people go see at Future Yard?
Bill Ryder-Jones is a bit of a hero of mine so him, and I really like Stella Donnelly’s album. Seatbelts are really ace. Gintis and Bill Nickson too. I’m sure everyone is really amazing, I’ll have to do a bit more homework about everyone else. Get a little pie chart together.
Why should festival goers take time out to come and see you play? What can they expect from your performance at Future Yard?
Come see us if you like talky bits between songs.
Laurie Shaw will be performing at Future Yard on Saturday 24th August in the Bloom Building at 15:45. You can hear more music by Laurie Shaw over at his Bandcamp page, and he can also be found on Facebook.
For more details about the festival, including how to purchase weekend and day tickets, head over to FutureYard.org