Our encounter with the band "Lavington Bound" in Wincanton

In late April of 2011, Leïa Tortoise and Anilori attended their first Wincanton Discworld Event, the Spring Fling.

Among other things, they saw a concert of the band Lavington Bound, who makes folk music and songs inspired by Discworld. For more information, please read the article where we relayed their last news, or follow the links inside.

After the concert they have had an off-the-cuff interview with two members of the band, Edward Hanfrey and Roger Scully.

Here is a transcript of the interview :

VM : Since when have you been into Discworld ?

Edward Hanfrey : A year ago, when we did our first Spring Bash ; but we've existed as a band for two years and a half. We're fairly new.

VM : Have you known each other for a long time ?

Ed : Since we're in the band ; it was formed through adverts on the internet. We normally have someone playing the guitar, but they left a month ago, we're trying to find a replacement. Not many people want to play in a band.

VM : What gave you the idea of making Discworld-themed songs ?

Ed : It was pure luck ; someone gave Reb our phone number. Some other band was supposed to be playing, but they couldn't make it. And Discworld is a very rich universe, and traditionals fit into it very well. We had a chat with Terry after the first gig, and would it be possible to write a Wintersmith song ? That's how it got started. We now hope to play at Birmingham 2012 ; we'll have the album recorded already.
I had played the PC game as a child ; I didn't read a lot.

Roger : I had read a few books. As a result of writing the Wintersmith song, with encouragement from the guys here, we set about writing more, after another gig.

VM : Have you heard of « wizard rock », where amateur bands sing Harry Potter-related songs ? Would you say you're the Discworld equivalent ? « Disc Rock » ?

Ed : No, I hadn't heard of that... As far as we know, we're the only « Disc Rock » band. And we're not official, we're amateurs, doing it for the fun ; it's fanart.

VM : Aren't there copyright problems ?

Ed : Since it's technically fanart, we don't need to sign a contract, as long as money goes to charity. The intention is that some of the money for the album goes to charity, and some of it we keep – we've got to pay everyone... But we're looking to do it professionnally one day.

VM : By the way, what do you do « in real life » ?

Roger : I'm an architect ; Edward a cleaner, with a promising career as a chef ; Tor a mother, which is kind of the hardest work in the world, which is why she had to leave, and we had to get a new voice.

VM : How far along is the second album ?

Ed : All the songs are written, we just have to record it, which is what we're going to do. We've been practicing new Disc songs ; it takes some time, and commitment. We've got to learn to play them. It consumes lives... We want to record the Disc stuff for August ; we're looking forward to it.

We're writing a third album of our own stuff. I've been to India and it got us interested in world music, we want to bring all this into the mix. We have hundreds of instruments between us !

Edward slip away to pack up the stuff back

VM : Would you like to be more officially involved with Discworld ?

Roger : I would love to score a Discworld film ; our music is a bit showtime, it could translate well into a show. The tunes would blend themselves into a musical. They're fun tunes, even the dark ones ! At the moment, I'm just happy reading the books and writing songs about it.

VM : What does « Lavington Bound » actually mean ?

Roger : Lavington is the place where Tor lives, and where we used to do a lot of gigs. We often had to go to Lavington, so we felt it was kind of appropriate : « on our way to Lavington yet again... » And I fell in love with the word ! it sounds folky. We were called Devolution before, for about half a year, but it was a little rocky, not the image we wanted ; so we decided on the new name, on a trip to Lavington.

VM : Do you have any other ideas for songs, Discworld or other ?

Roger : A few ! There are four more we need to write : one about Jingo – a marching song – one about The Colour of Magic, and we wanted to do one about seamstresses ; it's a traditional subject in folk songs ! We're a folk band doing mostly original music, but also traditionals, and reworking traditional music is a good place to start. We've only taken two tunes from traditional music, « Ankh-Morpork » and « Equal Rites » (which is on Brigg Fair, traditional English fiction).

VM : And the fourth ?

Roger : The title could be « A Hat Full of Sky ». « Where's my cow ? » is the most popular tune ; there's a whole world of inspiration here. It's good fun, but it's not easy ! It's lovely that people had the opportunity to come and listen. Our Myspace got lots of hits, about 800, from Discworld Monthly overnight ; usually it's more like five or ten.
We haven't done Discworld stuff anywhere else ; there have been tumultuous times for the band ; we've been losing and finding peole, struggling to get a steady lineup. But we feel that the Discworld songs will work well with the general public.

Wincanton regular "Davina" who dropped by : There's been Discworld-themed music before ; Dave Greenslade made a whole album inspired by the Discworld, but it wasn' t really songs, it was mid-nineties with a 70s-80s New Age vibe ; not songs you could hum or whistle.

Roger : The audience here is very happy, and it reflects in the songs. It's a pleasure to play for people who want to listen to us !

"Davina" : The people aren't here for Discworld ; they like the Lavington Bound style. It's more fun than typical English folk music.

VM : It's very dynamic, quite unlike the general idea of cliché folk music ; younger, more modern.

Roger : Folk music is in its peak at the moment in England, but there's an idea that it's « for old people » ; but it does relate to everyone, it's literally the music of the people. The stigma relates to the perceived image, not the real one. It's vocal harmonies, we can knock the socks off people with that !

VM : Nice final word. Thank you very much !

Many thanks to them for reviewing this transcript and allowing us to share it, and signing the Dedicacium!