Carlsberg ’n’ cuddles with Seafret

by Ellie Duffield

I’m one of four students waiting to interview to Seafret before they play at St Stephen’s Church, where they headline the Communion Presents tour. With their soul-searching, atmospheric vibes (summed-up beautifully by their title) and support slots with James Bay and Hozier, it’s little wonder they’re in demand. Clearly, Jack Sedman (vocals) and Harry Draper (guitar) are just getting started.

Even before the interview I’m on a high, thanks to a wonderfully rambunctious welcome from tour-manager Ian. The tyke! He’s clearly proud of his fellas. My turn comes, and we sit down on the squishy squashy sofas with some beers – cheers Ian! Time to get to know Jack and Harry.

Here are the best bits from my chat with the boys from Brid.

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Yorkshire! What do you miss most?

Jack: The sea.
Harry: The quietness.
Jack: And family.

Tell me the Seafret story.

Jack: My first experience of Harry was when we were six, and our families went camping together – our mums and dads knew each other at school. At one point in the evening the song ‘Gaybar’ by Electric Six came on. I was giggling. Then Harry went: ‘I cant believe they’re singing about nuclear war.’ I was like… who is this kid!?

Harry: It’s definitely reversed now though. He’s the most mature. I laugh at anything!

Jack: Then we met again at an open-mic night in Sewerby, at a tiny little pub. I was there with my dad’s country band, probably playing banjo like some possessed devil-child…That was when my dad’s guitarist pushed me to sing on the open mic. Since meeting there, we’ve been playing together!

Music’s always been a part of your lives then?

Harry: I was about thirteen when I picked up a guitar. It was when I got grounded for smoking…

Jack: He did heavy time for that!!

Harry: … and there were always guitars around the house – my dad used to play in a band as well. I was bored one day, so tried one out. As soon as I could play something I thought: you know what? This is great!! We were both surrounded by music, so I think we were always going to end up taking this path.

Jack: One time I was in the bath, was singing ‘Fields of Gold’ by Eva Cassidy with my ears underwater. Mum heard me and she said: ‘You can sing!’ I didn’t believe her at first, but kept singing against records and I guess that was it!

What is it about the sea that moves you so?

Jack: So obviously in Bridlington we grew up right by it… Then, moving to London… I think we must have been longing for home when we wrote a lot of our songs! Living in a small town you’re always dragging your heels. Then you move to London and think: thank God!! Then you go back and think: this place is gorgeous.

Best gig you’ve played?

Jack: Bridglinton spa. We were supporting Jack Bugg. Before we went on the crowd were going mental! We thought they were expecting Jake to come on. But it was for us!

Best gig you’ve seen?

Jack: Jack White, Brid Spa. Also when we got signed my mum bought us tickets for Bob Dylan in Manchester. We’ve been so lucky.
Harry: Paul Simon at Glastonbury.

How was touring with James Bay?

Harry: He’s such a nice guy. We went for a drink with him in Dalston, you know, when he didn’t have his hat on and all… He’s so down to earth.

Jack: We supported him at this venue last year! We love this little church, its gonna go off tonight with our band!!

Talking point – Phones at gigs. Go.

Jack: When people are watching the gig through a phone screens? I’d just rather they didn’t.

Harry: When we played in Stockton a couple of weeks ago, there were two people at the side just filming the whole thing! So weird.

Jack: I think we’ve all taken a photo or two at a gig (and felt a bit stupid for doing it) but when you’re watching practically the whole thing through a phone screen, you just aren’t in the moment. It also really kills the buzz for the musicians. Some venues just say no phones…

Harry: If there were no phones at gigs… imagine. No footage on the internet, nothing. You’d have to be there to see a live performance and experience it truly.

If you could describe yourself using a song…

Jack: Sugarman – Rodriguez… its about wanting to escape a place…
Harry: Solid Air – John Martyn. I live in cuckoo land half the time.

lf you could invite three people, dead or alive, to dinner – who would it be?

Harry: Will Ferrel…
Jack: Jack Nicholson… and… Tom Waites. Now what a nice little party! You can come if you like!

Yes please. And finally: Would you rather: never play music again, or never hear music again?

Harry: I’d rather never hear music and still be able to play.
Jack: But whats the point coz you wouldn’t be able to hear yourself?
Harry: But if you could hear yourself… RIght? That’d be my choice! It’s an escape for me. So I’d just play all my favourite songs.
Jack: I’d listen to others. I’d just bore myself!
Harry: Yeah… maybe Im being a bit selfish then! Makes you think though… people who are deaf are so brave. Life would be so still without sound.

 

Manager Ian pops his head around the door. Time’s up. The guys give me hugs goodbye. These guys are so sincere. Maybe I’m a little delusional after that cuddle, but I feel like we’ve been chatting in our front room.

Seafret’s heart-tugging single ‘Wildfire’ is available now. You’ll have to wait til January 29th for their debut album, ‘Tell Me Its not Real’.