Monday, 28 September 2015

Introducing Born Zero

“Born Zero” are a new four piece band ready to rip up the rock world and it was my pleasure to have the opportunity to chat with three of them, lead singer Jack, drummer Charlie and lead guitarist Iggy.

Having known each other for eight years, the three were originally in a five piece band before two left to pursue other interests and Frankie came in as the bass player.  So it was no more Voltage and Born Zero was born, which is quite appropriate as with all the lads being born in the 2000, the name was effectively born in more ways than one.  I found out that Charlie originally hated the name but was sold once the logo was designed.

Rehearsing at Charlie’s house, mainly due to that’s where the drum kit is as well as a customed built sound proof studio, every Saturday the guys meet up and thrash out their latest set.  Each of them introduces new material into the bands, with Iggy loving his guitar solos and Charlie always wanting to show off his latest addition to his drum kit.  The band has moved on dramatically from performing covers to writing and now performing their own material.  “Blinded By The Light” debuted on youtube on 21st August and, within the first two weeks, had already climbed to nearly 1400 views.

Taking influences from the likes of Avenged Sevenfold, Killswitch Engage, Bullet for my Valentine and of course, Metallica, their music steadily got heavier until the new brand of Born Zero was ready for the world to hear.

The biggest challenge of the band has mainly been getting to agree what to do.  The naming caused some issues until it was settled upon and the main challenges are now knowing when to finish the song writing, always wanting to add that little bit extra as well as keeping Charlie from wanting his new bit of kit to play centre stage!

Managed by Mick Pritchard, who has some two decades in the industry, there is a great decision making process in place, starting with Iggy and Mick, going to the band before Mick advises them of the best decision to take.

With their debut single now being played to the world, it was interesting to find out that it was Frankie who came in one day with a new riff and showed it off.  Iggy was soon adding to it and before they knew what happened, the song was born.  Mick wrote the original lyrics which Jack added to, especially the lead phrase which became the title.

While each of the four contributes musically, it was great to know that their talents don’t stop there.  Charlie loves his artwork and came up with the logo for the band while Jack isn’t just a good voice.  His online computer skills have gained him the role of Digital Manager for the band and has already uploaded a behind the scenes look.

Having already performed at various venues, their favourite being the Birmingham Town Hall, I couldn’t believe it when they told me that they counted themselves lucky to escape from one venue with their lives and instruments intact!  Apparently a group of fresh faced teens shouldn’t have been performing heavy rock!

However, they received a warmer welcome when performing in their own back yard at Festival on the Green on the 12th September.

After we had finished discussing the origins and the future of the band, I decided to have a bit of fun and get to know the lads a little better.  Unfortunately Frankie was on holiday so he wasn’t around to answer, but Jack, Charlie and Iggy certainly had some interesting answers to the quickfire questions.

Q: Peanut butter or marmite?
Jack: Peanut butter
Iggy: Neither
Charlie: Neither

Q: Morning, Noon or Night?
J: Night (for cuddling)
I: Night
C: Night (for the darkness!)

Q: What was the last film that you watched?
J: Metallica Through the Never
I: Ouija
C: Erm… Barbie’s Xmas Movie (because my younger sister made me!)

Q: What did you have for breakfast this morning?
J: Bacon & Brown sauce sandwich
I: Sausage & Egg sandwich
C: Toast with lemon curd

Q: Ninja or Pirates?
J: Ninja
I: Pirates
C: Ninjas (because I don’t like bangs!)

Q: What’s your favourite clothes shop@
J: River Island
I: Attitude
C: Spiral Direct

Q: Given the chance, where would you like to visit?
J: New York
I: Japan
C: Pakistan (for the photos)

Q: Favourite colour?
J: Rainbows (really??? Asked Michael)
I: Blue
C: Black (obviously)

Q: You are given one superpower.  What is it?
J: The ability not to embarrass myself in public
I: Invisibility
C: Telekinesis

Q: What was your first thought when you woke up this morning?
J: I’ve gotta work today!
I: Crap!  Work!
C: Haha, the other two will be at work (as I woke up at 11am!)

Q: Describe 1 important item from your childhood and where is it now?
J: Teddy bear called Snuggly and it’s still on my bed
I: A seahorse soft toy and it’s probably boxed up in the garage

Q: Do you have any scars and how did you get the last one?
J: No scars
I: Not a scar as such but I’ve got a big lump on the back of my head where I got punched in the Mosh pit at Leeds and Reading festival
C: On my knee from playing British Bulldog.  The skin was floppy and hanging off!

Q: Who would be your ideal room-mate?
J: James Hetfield from Metallica
I: Phil Anselmo
C: My friend Leah

Q: Favourite radio station (expecting a clean sweep here!!)
J: Kerrang
I: Kerrang
C: Kerrang!

Q: Excluding music, what is your favourite subject at school?
J: Geography
I: Science
C: English Lit

Q: Do you believe in life on other planets?
J: Yes!
I: Yes
C: Yes

Q:  Do you have any bad habits?
J: Biting my nails, (at which point the others added – eating with his mouth open!)
I: Scratching in a certain place in public
C: Obsession with cleaning

Q: Are you a clean or messy person?
J: Clean
I: Messy
C: Obviously clean!

Q: What was the last household chore that you did and when?
J: Made my bed this morning
I: Loaded the dishwasher this morning
C: Cleaned the house today (obviously)

Q: Name 1 thing that not many people know about you?
J: I’m slightly deaf in my left ear
I: I’m a poet at heart

Q: If you HAD to change your first name, what would it be?
J: Jesse
I: Zack
C: Zadock

Q:  The band has made it through Boot Camp on the X-Factor.  Who would you want as your mentor?
J: Rita Ora
I: Simon Cowell
C: Rita Ora

Q: If you could be any fictional character, who would you be?
J: Draco Malfoy
I: Aragorn
C: Faramir

Q: What was the last thing that you did that got you into trouble?
J: Nothing – I don’t do trouble 
I: Being noisy and keeping my parents awake until 7AM
C: I cut off half the hair of my sister’s Barbie and gave her a kiss scar.  (Michael – think Spike from Toy Story!)

Q: Would you do a bungee jump?
J: Yes
I: Maayyybbeee?
C: Nope

Q:  If we were to press play on your i-pod, what song would be playing?
J: Black Storm Cherry – Lonely Train
I: Ingested – Divine Right of Kings
C: My Chemical Romance – Na Na Na

Q: Scary Movies or Happy Endings?
J: Scary
I: Scary
C: Happy!

Q: Born Zero the movie is being cast.  Who would play each band member?  (We took a consensus approach to this one)
Jack would be played by Leonardo diCapprio
Iggy would be played by Orlando Bloom
Charlie would be played by Johnny Depp
Frankie would be played by Kyle Gass

You can find out more information about the band, and watch their debut song by going onto youtube, following them on Twitter @BornZeroBand, and on their Facebook page, Born Zero.

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Where am I? What have I been doing?

Ooopise!!!  Once again, my blogging has taken a back seat as I've been concentrating on various writing projects and also other social aspects of my life.  No apologies for that, I guess, but heck, I really do need to make more of an effort with my blog.

Therefore, this is the first of two blog posts that will hit the page over the next week to ten days!  PROMISE!!!

So what are these projects that I've been upto?

Well, Dragonfire is coming along... slowly!  Chapters 1-7 are off at the editors and I'd say that I am somewhere between a quarter and a third through the story.  There are new character to meet, old friends and foes who reappear and, of course, where would we be without a death to a major character!!!  It's been a while since the last big death so I thought it was about time to send one of the gang off to meet their maker!  Don't hate me when you read it :-))

The writers group is also keeping me busy.  There are a group of five of us who meet up each month and encourage each others efforts.  Somehow, I got landed with the job of being the chairman so I responded by setting some tricky homework assignments haha.  This month's is particularly hard.  If anybody fancies a go, the assignment was to write a story, any story, any genre.  However, it has to be 26 sentences long.  Each sentence has to start with the next letter in the alphabet to the previous.  BUT you don't have to start at A, you can start anywhere.  If you do have a go and want some feedback from the group, feel free to email it to me at

You may have noticed a different email address to my usual one.  That's because FINALLY I have my own website!  With a great deal of appreciation to Pete at App Intelligence, you can see all of my books, latest news, my book club and even links to download sample and buy my books by visiting

I have also been doing some more book reviews and this is my latest one.  It's not what I would normally read, being a scifi / fantasy geek, but I can thoroughly recommend this to anyone who has a young child.

I Am Here!  Where are you? by Anita Jones

5 stars - An excellent book for parents with younger childres.

I am here! Where are you? tells the story of Ajay, a young Indian boy living in a suburb of Mumbai.  It starts off in his room before zooming out step by step until you get to see the universe.  On each page, you are invited to discuss the space where Ajay is and then compare it with the space that you and your child are in.

As an education tool, it is a wonderful idea, teaching children about spacial awareness while comparing it with an environment that they probably would not be aware of, ie Ajay's life in India.  It introduces the idea of cultural diversity as well as giving a very brief lesson about world conservation.

I can see that Ms Jones is well versed in children's education, with the idea to stimulate speaking and listening with observations, while Sam Smith has done a brilliant job with the illustrations.  They are bright and colourful and should be guaranteed to hold a young child's interest.

Aimed at children between the ages of four and eight, it is a clever concept to engage parents and children.

I am here! Where are you? is available on Amazon, currently at £2.99 and you can get it by clicking here

Well that's it for this quick update.  Next up is an interview with an exciting new band, Born Zero, who have just released their debut song.  We are just finalising the details of the interview, making sure that there is nothing untoward in their answers haha so expect to see that posted, with links about how to find out about the band in the next few days.
Peace out!