This week, in a shocking turn of events, Free Recovery lead guitarist Dave Sowerby (also known as Davebacca aka ‘the Riff-inator’) has been suspended from playing with the band for one week, following a sensational ban! Dave was also fined £2,500 by the BGBA (Band Gig Booking Authority), a new body set up to regulate band bookings throughout England and Wales!
The controversial one-week suspension couldn’t come at a worse time for Free Recovery who were booked by Joe Head to play the Scream Lounge in London, Croyattle this coming Saturday night the 15th of July. The Monthly Grunge themed night run by Mr Head (a legend), is formally known as ‘Everybody Loves Our Town,’ but informally as ‘Joe’s Grunge Night.’ The night is the hub of the Croyattle Grunge scene and a really great night filled with Grungers having a good time whilst rocking out.
What Does this Mean for the Band?
Due to Dave’s last minute suspension by the BGBA, the Band has been forced to take to the
pitch stage this Saturday evening without their star player! This means that the band will have to play an acoustic set, lower down the line-up. The band has also been forced to change formation from a 3,1 to a 2,1 stage set up. This has left Warrick James (Jimmy aka Jimbacca) as the only guitarist new lead guitarist. Whilst the critics have slammed the formation change and having James on lead, the man himself was quite upbeat about the opportunity. ” I have been waiting for the Dave to step aside for so long so that I could step out of his Wookie-like shadow. This is my time to shine and riff like I know I can, like the Slash. I have always thought I was much better than Dave, Ellie and Andy put together. Why they have me stuck rhythm guitar, I have no idea?”
Jimmy at dress rehearsal for Saturdays show.
Bookers and fans have also been quite positive about the acoustic set, applauding the band for soldiering on without their lead guitarist (the sort of stiff upper lip stuff that you would expect from a British band). Some are quite looking forward to witnessing James’ general strumming transcendence.
Dave who obtained the ban for pulling out of the gig (in contravention of a gig contract) for thinking it was on another Saturday, after having crossed the streams with other social commitments, was forced to sit out this Saturday’s gig, as well practice for one whole week. Together with the £2,500 fine, Dave was also forced to hand in his
plectrum & guitar badge and gun to the Band Seargent who told Dave, “… and if I see your face around this precinct this week again…I’ll bust your ass!’
Dave who clearly was not impressed with the measures take by BGBA, together with comments made regarding the suspension did not wish to make a statement, did send us this picture (below) summarising his thoughts on the debacle.
Fortunately for the Band, and Mr Sowerby, the suspension should lapse before the band’s next gig at the Sussex Music Festival later this month (29th July) new Copthorne. The Ban will be performing a 30 min set at around 3pm for the charity event, helping to raise money for the British Heart Foundation and the St Catherine’s Hospice. Let us just hope the band’s antics on and off the calendar keep them out of trouble with the BGBA so that they are all able to rock the living *&$£ out of the festival goers on Saturday the 29th. For more information about booking tickets (proceeds of which are also going to charity) pleace click on the following link: Sussex Music Festival Tickets.
Dave on the left and Jimmy on the right.
Message from the band:
Please remember to support the band by tracking us on BandsinTown (click track on the right), and following us on Facebook (click like on the right too), as well as Twitter, Instagram and Youtube. Oh, and don’t forget to subscribe to our blog, most importantly listen to our music and come to one of our live shows one day soon! Alternatively, you can do any combination of the aforementioned and you will still rock! \m/
Chris Cornell, 1964-2017
We are very sad to hear that one of our heroes passed away recently. Chris Cornell (the frontman of Soundgarden, Temple of the Dog and Audioslave) was such an inspiration. We will miss you Chis… but your legend will live on! Our thoughts are with all Grungers, his friends, bandmates, and most of all his family.
Chris was such a huge influence on all modern rock bands, including our own. Our vocalist (Jimmy) has always held Cornell in the highest regard as a vocalist, and describes his voice as ‘the Holy Grail!” So it’s no wonder that ‘Furtherman’ by Free Recovery sounds heavily inspired by Chris Cornell, and you just have to listen to the scream in ‘Furtherman’ to know it. In fact, during recording sessions, we used to joke about getting Chris in to come and do the scream for us. That was the sound we wanted, that is what our band and thousands if not millions of other bands and vocalists aspire to… to be more like Chris.
Earlier this year our band was booked to play a gig tonight, and it is going to be a tough gig considering we have just lost a grunge icon. Chris was the lighthouse that guided us! The gig just so happens to be a Grunge Night, and we think it was a really nice touch by the host, Joe Head, to dedicate the night to Chris Cornell. Looks like each act is now going try to play a Cornell song. We’re gonna give “Like a Stone” (by Audioslave) a shot, even though we’ve never jammed it as a band. At this sad time, we can’t wait to be with our #Grunger Brothers and Sisters tonight in #Croyattle (@ScreamLounge, Croydon, London). We will try do you proud Chris!
Our first headline show in some time coming up this Feb 10th, get your early bird tickets now! #freerecovery #freerecoverygigs
The Backroom at the Star (#Guildford) presents – Rock Wars (US v UK).
Featuring some of the best rock bands from the UK and the US of A. Two American Bands & Two UK bands go head to head, by grabbing each other by the rock horns! \m/ #ROCKWARS #STARWARS #ENDOR \m/
In the Red Corner (playing for the UK) we have Free Recovery and Sons of Endor; two of the finest local rock bands that the UK has to offer.
In the Blue Corner (playing for the US of A) we have Pure Ed and Radio Cult; two awesome American rock bands who will both be on tour from America this February…so don’t miss them.
Rock Fans will be the winner on this epic night, as bands from across the Atlantic come together to rock your socks off!
Rock Wars (UK v US)
19:45-20:15 Radio Cult
20:30-21:00 Sons of Endor
21:15-22:00 Pure Ed
22:15-23:30 Free Recovery
The venue capacity is limited and whilst tickets have been allocated to be sold at the door we will only be allowed to do so until the venue reaches capacity. So please make sure you get your tickets online to avoid any disappointment.
Tickets are £7 online and £8 on the door or £4 for students.
Get your tickets here……and you will rock!
Rock Wars – opening band ‘Radio Cult’ in action.
Sons of Endor
Free Recovery is back at the Edge in Croydon (or Croyattle, as we like to think of it) on Thursday, which brings to mind the eventful time that we had there previously.
Although it’s been a while since we did our full-fat grunge thing at the Edge (Free Recovery were taking a well-earned rest whilst Dave and his wife Sarah were bringing a new member of the team into the world) Jimmy just couldn’t stay away, so he played an acoustic slot in July and it turned out to be an eventful night…
Paul came along to check out Jimmy’s set, which included a number of covers that tracked his life through music, starting with Bob Marley and Bob Dylan, before including (of course) some grunge classics. He went down well with the crowd and even got them singing along to Black by Pearl Jam!
With the audience nicely warmed up, Jimmy passed the reins over to the others on the bill, including a surprise full band set from Brothers In Chains, which blew Jimmy and Paul away – some seriously great Alice in Chains covers from the guys who we’d only ever seen acoustically before.
A great evening was had by all and we all went away feeling happy. Jimmy offered to give Paul a lift to the train station (who had been too engrossed to keep an eye on the time!) but that’s where the evening got interesting…
Upon entering the car park, it became immediately apparent that there was a problem. Jimmy had left his car lights on and they weren’t looking their brightest…sure enough, the car wouldn’t start. Jimmy spotted someone else in the car park and approached him to see whether he had jump leads…it turned out that he couldn’t even get into his car – the electrics had broken and it wouldn’t unlock!
So, with all of us stranded and Paul’s train pulling out of the station, there was no choice but to call the RAC and let the evening take us where it would. We got talking to Neil, the owner of the securely locked car, who was not having the best day.
It turns out that Neil was an Afghanistan war veteran and paratrooper. Neil was telling us hairy stories about his time in Afghanistan and as it turned out his best friend bravely lost his life out there. Sadly, the day we met Neil it was the anniversary of his friend’s passing and Neil had just been to dinner with his family to mark the remembrance of his great friend; and now he was locked out of his car, hanging about for the RAC roadside assistance and being hassled by two musicians!! It was about then that Jimmy decided to cheer us all up with an impromptu reprise of Black, despite having broken his top E string during the last song of his set.
Jimmy had always joked with people that, although Free Recovery didn’t provide roadside assistance, if they ever broke down and got in touch with us, we would come and play music for them whilst they waited for the real recovery men. So it was quite a touching moment when Jimmy had finally fulfilled his promise and helped put a huge smile on Neil’s face.
With the guys being moved by Neil’s amazing story and considering that our song ‘Our Summer Is Dead’ was written about the war in Afghanistan, Jimmy felt compelled to give Neil our last copy of our EP. Neil was pretty stoked and we like to think that we were destined to break down that night.
Considering the highly ‘unusual and suspicious’ behaviour, the police dispatched a paddy wagon to investigate proceedings. The scrum of coppers, who were clearly expecting to do some arresting, were so perplexed and slightly amused by the whole situation, simply cautioned us to be careful of drug addicts that frequented the car park. It’s not the first time police have intervened when Jimmy has been playing guitar on the street, but that is a story for another day.
Eventually, Michael Katsianis from the RAC arrived and tended to Neil’s car first, who had made the call and was rightly first on the list. He tried everything and we mean everything to get into his car – the front grill came off, the bonnet opened and Michael disconnected and reconnected everything he could find. After setting off the alarm repeatedly and a lot of scratching of his head, he finally gave it up as an impossible mission…having spent two hours trying. Never let it be said that the RAC don’t give it their all…maybe we’ll write a song one day about it.
Jimmy’s car was easier to deal with and, even though Micheal (from the RAC) was able to jump start Jimmy’s car, Paul and Jimmy stayed with Neil right until the end, when he was safely driven home. We headed back to Jimmy’s house, eventually arriving at around 3 am…a little later than planned and Paul in the wrong house! Still, it hasn’t put us off Croyattle and we’re looking forward to returning on Thursday.
Thankfully, Neil returned to his car in the morning and it mysteriously unlocked…Jimmy and Paul may have been a little late to work…
Much as this was a strange night, we made a new friend and fan of the band – hopefully, we’ll catch up with Neil again soon…although maybe we’ll all get the train next time!
For more information about our gig at the Edge, and Joe’s Grunge Night, please check out the following facebook event, compliments of Joe Head (What a legend!)
Free Recovery is glad to announce that it is playing the main stage at Staycation Live Festival on Saturday the 6th August 2016 from 1:20pm-2:20pm, and is calling all rock fans to come out and support their show.
Free Recovery’s sell out grunge tribute gig at the Asahi Backroom at the Star, Guildford. Photo by David Pullinger
Free Recovery frontman Jimmy is excited to play in the town where he first started gigging and eventually went on to run the open mic at the Red Lion pub in Godalming, before starting the band.
“The band is really stoked to be playing Staycation. It kinda feels like ‘coming home’ for me, so it would be great to see a big turn-out to support us and rock music in general.” Jimmy
Jimmy’s Red Lion Open Mic
Jimmy’s Red Lion Open Mic
Jimmy’s Red Lion Open Mic
Staycation Live is one of Surrey’s fastest growing music and arts festivals, with an ethos for showcasing a broad range of music, food and entertainment, and this year it is adding grunge rock band Free Recovery to the lineup, which now gives a lot of rock fan/festival goers something to rock out to! Free Recovery who recently released their debut EP in 2015, has been recognised by Classic Rock Magazine (click here to find out more) as one of the most up-and-coming bands of 2016; so don’t miss their blend of full-fat grunge rock if you are going to Staycation Live Festival this year.
Although a free entry event, Staycation do ask that you please support the event and its chosen charity by donating on the gate and in any of the collection buckets you will see floating around on site throughout.
This year the chosen charity is Godalming based charity Halow Project.
Starting with the Headline Act, the lineup for the Saturday afternoon is:
Jenna and the G’s
Plus : Frank the Cat – Soundation – The Peas – Spotlight Cannibal – Ginger Beats – The Free Radicals – Pete Christie – Northsyde
See you all at the festival…here is a ‘taster’ of what you can expect from us!
Don’t forget to track us on Bands-in-Town for news of upcoming gigs.
Peace, Love and Rock \m/