New material in the works for Hand me Downs

Hand me downs

THIS SATURDAY night sees a rare Enniskillen outing for local fivepiece ‘The Hand Me Downs’.

A Fermanagh ‘super group’ of sorts, the band is made up of members of a rake of different local bands – The Engagements (formerly Shakedown), Midnight Graffiti, and I’m Not Maggie.

Their style of music is, however, something radically different from what they have done before.
“Things are going really well at the minute,” explained frontman, Jimmy Farry (vocals and mandolin), “We started recording our own single – so we’ve got that to look forward to this year. It’s just a matter of trying to get as many dates as possible. At this time of the year we’re working on new songs to put into the set but generally it’s been going really well.

Along with Jimmy, the band features George Bracken on keyboards, Marty Jones on drums, Adam Cooke on double bass, and Karl McNally on guitar.

Jimmy continued: “It’s hard to describe – the word I would use is ‘Folkabilly’ – it’s kind of rapid – rock songs played in a country style almost.”

While the band have mainly performed covers in a live setting, Jimmy told Music Focus that work on original material has started.

“It’s very much in its infancy at the minute. We’ve got a couple of songs that we have demos for that we’re working on together – it’s very much bluegrass style. It’s very stripped back, acousticy stuf but with loads of energy.

“The songs that we’re working on at the minute I started, and brought to practice. And then the rest of the guys put threir own stamp on it as well, so it’s a collective thing. I came up with the original but everyone has a song in them so hopefully everyone iwll bring somthing to the table.

“It’s just a matter of getting into the studio or doing it ourselves. We had toyed with doing it very DIY because that’s what the band is almost about. So it’s just a matter of getting it recorded, being happy with it, getting a mix we’re happy with and putting it out there.”

And a potential timeframe?

“We’d like to do it as early as we can. But we’re all very busy with other committments, I’m in I’m Not Maggie, Marty’s in The Engagements, and George and Adam are in Midnight Graffiti – so it’s difficult sometimes to pin down stuff we we’re not working towards gigs. But hopefully we will get it out this side of Easter without putting too much pressure on ourselves.”

On Saturday, the band plays in the Crowe’s Nest, Enniskillen.

“The thing that we get said back to us the whole time is that we have loads of energy. So they should expect loads of energy, a few surprises. We play songs that people won’t expect us to play.

“You see a string band on stage and you thing ‘This is going to be a night of country music’ but there’s a few surpises in here – you’ll get the likes of Foo Fighers and Florence and the Machine – that kind of stuff too. We think it comes across really well. It’s an eclectic mix of songs, in a different style than people are used to. So hopefully that comes across in the live shows.”

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