|Saloon: L-R Mike, Amanda, Adam, Alison, Matt|
I have never been one to dwell on the past. A fascination with the future, whether it be the robotnik future of ‘Happy Robots’ or the brink of Armageddon sung about in ‘Impact’, an interest in the future has always been in the music I've been involved in. But despite this I have never been that interested in the internet and ‘social’ networking, even though Saloon were web 'early adopters'. Whether it is the disconnection with the real world I dislike, or just the being stuck in front of a keyboard for hours on end, there is something about it I find a bit dull.
For me, I lost my passion in being a band when a night in doing ‘band-work’ became plugging a gig by trolling on MySpace. It has none of the romanticism reading a review in a new fanzine, the frantic nights-in copying C90’s to send to record labels that will never listen to them and running around town centres in the dark sticking up badly printed posters with wallpaper paste.
So, why now to resurrect the Saloon website, and even more so, why do it in a ‘social-network’ blog format? For me, this is not about looking to the past, but it’s about looking forwards, drawing a line, exorcising some demons, and most of all, making space for the new.
Now a proud parent, I can no longer afford to have several large boxes of videos, C90’s and press cuttings cluttering up the spare room and I have begun to scan and record everything onto my computer.
The timing feels right. It is ten years since Saloon reached our career ‘high-point’. Having released the debut album in April 2002, we toured pretty much every toilet venue in the UK. In November 2012 we had just done a tour in the Netherlands (my personal favourite) we had played a blinding gig at the ICA with some of our favourite bands (and on that one night we were better than them all) and we were going into the studio (my Mum and Dad's living room) to record our next album on a real high. Only two months later, we topped John Peel’s Festive 50 and it was pretty much downhill from there, both in terms of the music but also personally. We split up later in 2003 and pretty much disappeared. Perhaps if we had stuck around a bit longer we may have gained some sort of recognition during the years where folkatronica found some sort of acceptance in the music press. That was just one of many boats we missed.
Ten years later, it feels right to share some of this stuff that I have had languishing in boxes for years; if not just so I can throw away the tapes. Most of it sounds terrible, and it will be of interest to literally about 5 people, but what the heck, if it is not your cup of tea go somewhere else.
So I will use these pages to share as much of the Saloon material I can, and I may make a few reflections and bits and bobs about other projects we have been involved in. Hopefully I might be able to get some of the others to contribute to site, who knows.
Of course this is all done in memory of the friends and family loved and lost since the band split up, not least our drummer Mike who died November 20th 2010 along with his much loved wife Sara.