Sticky Fingers and Filthy Habits -

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Chapter 1 ~ ‘ Who are ya?’

So I figure the time has come to start writing the fucking book...(breaks into random Liam Gallagher-sequel accent:) ... ‘it feels like the right time maaaaan’ ... 


(Back to Cockney) 

Er... so I’m Bobby... I’m 37... and in some people’s eyes... I am a ‘fuck-up’. Me personally? Well... I rather like me and i’m sure that one day I will get there. So bollocks. 


Anyways - I manage a band called L.A.N.E.S, who... not to put too fine a point on it ... are currently absolutely fucking smashing shit up... 

... and hopefully this book is going to document and details just exactly how we managed to make music our full time jobs. 


With a bit of luck. 


Yep ~ I am either a very ambitious man, with huge levels of Faith, who believes in destiny and in God 

OR 

... I am a fucking mental egomaniac, sycophantic fruit loop with massive levels of delusions of grandeur, Insane Daddy issues and a messiah’ complex. 


I have considered that conundrum quite thoroughly ~ and would reserve judgement myself at this stage - but I am sure time will tell. 


Anyways - who cares? That’s what the fucking book is for. 

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‘Firmed Up’

Whether LANES do smash shit up and become the next Oasis ~ or whether I plunge into a depressed suicide/mass-murder spree ~ the point is the same one that I have always preached to the boys.... it is not about the destination... there is not one... it is all about the journey. 


Which I’m hoping this book will bare witness to. 


Speaking of which. 


The first part of the strategy regarding the bands journey has worked wonderfully fucking well (smug face - don’t even care! Fuck you - it has. ) ~ 


The idea was simple enough - it goes like this. 


I stared at the four points of the tattoo of a compass that I have on my arm and had this epiphany. London, like any other ~ is a city and cities are divided up into 4: 

North, East, South and West. 


If the band want to make a real splash, they will need to have a big enough impact across the whole of London for someone in a much better position than us (say, a label for example) to see the potential, recognise our work and to help us to double down on our efforts. 


However you can’t conquer London with one gig... and if you are not focused on a specific aim, then you might as well be pissing into the wind. 


Naughty, Elephants, Squirt, Water. 


Break down the workload - do it stage by stage, piece by piece and brick by brick. 


The boys come from Camden and so Camden was the obvious place to begin proceedings. The first place to kick shit off. 

Plus ... it’s a musical Mecca, a very very unique place for music, it is steeped in history, still has a vibrant scene and the idea of starting off growing a fan base from there was a no brainer. In fact - It was never even discussed. 


The next step ~ which I’m particularly proud of ~ is that I ... erm... privatised a small army  ... 


Based on watching about 20 mins of that film about Chè Guevara and after reading about the early PR exploits and guerrilla warfare tactics employed in the early days by a band you may have heard of called ‘Kasabian’ ~ I derived a plan.  


Music is Power: use it to bring people together. 


Kasabian had a really strong internal infrastructure in their fan base right from the off - these die hards were known as ‘The Movement’ ~ well...L.A.N.E.S firm is known as ‘The Firm’ ~ funnily enough. Copyright ‘The Kray Twins’... 


And every single member of our ‘firm’ is considered ‘inclusive’ ~ another vital part of the project. This is about all of us. 

As a result of mobilising the young disconnected and disaffected youths with sick as fuck rock and roll tunes - so far we have managed to ram out The Good Mixer during the boys first gig and sell out The Iconic Dublin Castle in Camden before the boys second gig. That’s 120 people. 

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Where to next? Fuck knows.

History should note at this point (cheeky cunt) ~ - L.A.N.E.S were the first band since ‘Madness’ to be offered a residency at The Dublin ~ but unfortunately ~ we had to say no. The problem being: 


Bands cost money. 

Being in a band cost money. 

Ergo: We need to make fucking money. 


The music business has but a few income streams left... one of which is... gigs.


Therefore ~ after chatting to the boys ~ we decided to book 229 Great Portland Street for own event ~ ‘LANES live@229’ - presented by Sticky.


This time... rather than a promoter taking 60% of the door. We would take 80 and the venue 20%... that to me sounds somewhat more digestible... 


We, or at least I ... understand that more now than ever - music is a business ~ labels are not into spending anything except fuck all at the moment. 


Why should they? There is enough competition online to ensure that they can wait for bands to literally do it all themselves before plucking those determined few from the tree. 


I am and have always been very much aware that the only way we would attract the attention of labels is by; 


Paradoxically; turning a profit and carrying on as tho we don’t need anyone elses help. Irony calling. 


Hence the decision to turn down The Dublin and start our own events ~ and that means a gig in a new part of London - at 229. 


As it stands - the boys have a gig with ‘This Feeling’ on the 11th July ~ their third in Camden. After that, I will consider Camden hammered for a while. 


As a side note ~ ‘This Feeling’ are every aspiring band members wet dream to have onboard.


They have a playful choke-hold over exposure for new bands on Radio X, and the power to book you for massive festivals. They are connected from top to bottom. 


For LANES to have got under their noses this early was a massive coup. 


But by the same token, it’s just the kind of twist of fate that Curwen and I have spoken of conjuring up, been manifesting, imagining and creating from the off. And our imaginations hadn’t failed us yet. 


We pictured a fucking sick band. ✅ 

We pictured incredibly good songs ✅ 

We pictured rammed out gigs. ✅ 

We have pictured a lot more than that. 


Which brings us to our current situation ~ 

We imagine that by doing our own gigs we raise enough money to support new ideas, and that we earn enough to spend what we need to really get the boys noticed.


All we are really concerned about is continuing to spread the music and the message as far and as wide as possible. 


We all just want to keep it growing and finding new ways of making sure people hear about L.A.N.E.S... We have worked hard, but in many respects we haven’t even started yet. 


Since September when the band formed ~ we have performed miracles thus far. 


We are booked to play in Amsterdam in July as a bit of a reward for the boys and a reminder that it is and will also only ever be about the journey. 


As frontman Scotty says ‘From bedroom to Amsterdam in a year’. 


The band are a council estate bred working class honest close group of friends who represent disaffected young people: their lyrics have the power to resonate with a generation of young people raised against the backdrop of Tory Austerity and of having it hard. 


They represent a message ~ and the music delivers it. 


Piece by piece the aim is to spread LANES name all over London and onto the lips of anyone who knows their music. 


The gig at 229 will also signify another milestone being reached in the bands young career: 


Making some fucking dough ... 


What we do with that profit will probably dictate what happens next: 


That, I reckon - will probably be Chapter 2. 


Now we are all now up to date tho... could you do me a favour please?  Fuck off. 


Nah, just joking: I’ll bring you the next chapter as and when it unravels.


This book is being written in ‘real time’ ~ 

I can’t predict the future... but I am going to try to write it. Whatever happens next... I can predict this much... it won’t be boring. x