BALCONYTV LONDON 09/07/2009
LAYLA ANNA-LEE with PETER JACKSON AND THE EMPIRE
In early 2008, Peter Jackson decided to record a debut solo album based on the feel and experiences provided by South Eastern England and London Town. After years of being in various bands, Peter thought it was about time to try something unknown to him by going it alone and relying only on his own influences and judgements. After 4 weeks of sitting in a cold, damp barn, scratching his head and going mad with the thought "is this working or is this shit?!?" he asked long-time friend and bass player, Steve Austin, if he would be interested in producing the album. Steve accepted and jumped in head first by starting on the demo for an unfinished track titled "Piccadilly". After adding a bridge and arranging the track into a three and a half minute piece of pop perfection, it was obvious the working relationship was going to be very productive. After spending a few weeks writing and recording, it was decided that some of the tracks needed some well-thought out and well-executed lead guitar parts, so the pair decided to ask friend and accomplished guitarist, Dave Crunden. Dave came to the barn and laid down some guitar tracks which fitted instantly. After one of the sessions, a trip to the pub sparked the idea of performing the tracks live; this would pose a problem as previously all instruments (drums, bass, guitar, keys, etc) had been played by Peter. Dave mentioned a friend of his that played drums, and Steve already being a bass player meant the foundations of a live band were quite obtainable. The only thing now was to find a good quality keys player. Andy Hayes was in a previous band with Peter and first to mind when discussing possible key players for the live band. Peter spoke to Andy the following day and another acceptance meant the band was formed and ready to rehearse. After a few rehearsals there was a drummer change, which came in the form of Louis Pavlou (long-time friend of Andy). Lou's solid, flamboyant but tasteful drumming was exactly what was needed and he became the final recruit to The Empires army. Since Peter Jackson and The Empire formed they have been recording and gigging all over the south east and London. You can Check Them out at www.myspace.com/pjandtheempire
Tune in again tomorrow!