Jun 23 2010 Harrow Observer
Coming to a stage near you... CANDICE POOL meets a homegrown act that are on the bill for Harrow's biggest cultural festival
KEEP your eyes and ears peeled as a Harrow-based punk/alternative band are fast making their way on to the music scene. The teen trio have already made their debut at various venues around London, including Camden House, Borderline and The Fiddler's Elbow.
Punk rockers City Surrender will soon be performing at Harrow Council's Under One Sky festival on Sunday, as a supporting act for girl group, Girls Can't Catch.
In a relatively desolate Starbucks coffee shop in Edgware - not the pinnacle of rock and roll culture - I met the band to find out how their musical journey began.
The interview starts with a fresh-faced, polite boy approaching me to ask if I am the interviewer they are waiting for, who I soon discover to be lead singer and guitarist, 16-year-old Jonathan Jacobs.
The singer, known as JJ, of Honister Gardens, in Stanmore, is joined by bandmates, bassist and vocalist Joseph Timman, known as Joe, and drummer Chris Williams, from Barnet, both 17.
The boys are specific about the sound they are trying to create, citing influences as You Me At Six, Paramore, Fightstar and Fall Out Boy.
Joseph, of Redhill Drive, in Edgware, said: "You have to have a passion and desire for what you do."
The three developed an interest in music at a young age and now hold three-hour practice sessions each week at the Mill Hill Music Complex in Mill Hill, north-west London.
JJ tells me his father, a guitar teacher, started teaching him from the age of seven, while Joe learned classical piano music as a child and only developed a passion for rock music after meeting JJ at The Michael Sobell Sinai School, in Shakespeare Drive, Kenton, where he began learning bass guitar.
Chris didn't begin his musical expeditions until he was 12, he says, describing how an introduction to Avenged Sevenfold inspired him to take to the skins.
City Surrender formed three years ago and have an obvious chemistry. Despite appearing shy, they are enthusiastic about their fast approaching gig at Under One Sky.
JJ said: "Over the years we have played a lot of venues in and around London and we are thrilled to have been given this exciting local gig supporting Girls Can't Catch, which gives our fans the opportunity to come and see us on our own turf."
When quizzed about where they get ideas for their material, the boys said their inspiration is drawn from "everyday life" and JJ asserted that they simply want people to enjoy their music.
Concluding the interview, I ask what their hopes are for the future, to which they don't respond with the usual "we want to be rich and famous", you hear from a lot of young artists.
Chris said: "We don't want to be commercial, just generally popular, and for people to know our name and enjoy our music."
what? City Surrender play the Under One Sky festival
where? Kodak Sports Ground, Zoom Leisure, Harrow View
when? Sunday, June 27, noon-8pm
cost? Free for under 10s when accompanied by a paying adult and £1 for those aged 10 to 16. Adults £3.