In the Middle with The Big Moon
I got the chance to interview The Big Moon before their gig with Mystery Jets in Leeds Student Union. Minus bass player Celia Archer, I sat down with lead singer Juliette (‘Jules’) Jackson, guitarist Soph Nathan and drummer Fern Ford to talk about their upcoming headline tour, Glastonbury and keeping each other entertained on the road.
How have you been since touring with the Vaccines?
Soph Nathan: Good thank you, happy to be here.
Juliette Jackson: Big fan of Leeds. We love Leeds.
What are the main things you have been up to this year?
SN: We just recorded our album which will come out next year. What else have we done?
JJ: We played at Glastonbury. We saw Adele come on stage in this regal dress and she looked like the queen, and I was like, is that the queen?
So what the best gig you have played?
SN: It’s been pretty good overall. Sometimes crowds are quieter than others but that also can be nice because maybe they’re just concentrating. We haven’t had any stinkers.
What sort of music are you listening to at the moment?
SN: We’ve been listening to a band called Forth Wanderers a lot.
JJ: I’m really bad at listening to music. I used to have a phone that died all the time, but I have a new one now so I can listen to more. I’m listening to Frank Ocean.
SN: Spring King are amazing.
What’s the weirdest thing you have seen on tour?
JJ: I saw a giant Pikachu today. It was outside the union.
Fern Ford: I had a mini-meltdown today. You know when you are just so delirious from being tired. I had a break down in the mini-van. Soph tried to pick me up off the ground.
SN: I was trying. You were putting too much of your weight down.
FF: I’m heavy.
JJ: The telly in the Travelodge last night was weird. It was on a big bread board.
SN: I enjoyed the Travelodge last night. But you feel like you are in the same place when you always stay in them.
JJ: You lose sense of time and where you are.
Do you enjoy touring?
SN: By the end of the tour it’s nice to be home. But when you’ve been home for ages you want to go on tour.
JJ: Sometimes you have to do everything thing at once which is stressful. Like you have to go and record and play a show and that sort of thing. They are such different skills. But it’s cool when you are just doing one thing, like right now we are just touring.
SN: When you have a really good gig, it’s like the best feeling.
FF: I think the gigs are kind of like the rewards.
JJ: The gig is like the main event, when everyone’s there and having a moment at the same time.
Interviewer, Lucy and friend Phobee (third and forth left), with The Big Moon reppin’ the girl power
Do you get nervous before performing?
FF: It depends. If we are playing a new song then I am.
SN: If something goes wrong I get a bit wobbly and panic, but I don’t really get nervous anymore.
FF: We are just excited now.
Do you do anything to keep yourself entertained on tour?
SN: We have a game called ‘slappy ball’. We just slap this stress ball at each other.
JJ: It’s like volleyball.
Do you have any hidden talents?
SN: Fern can play loads of instruments, like, at the same time.
FF: I can also make a noise that sounds like a drill.
How important is it for there to be more all-female bands like yourselves out there?
SN: I think it’s important so women don’t think twice about making music. I don’t feel like we’ve been treated any differently to male bands which is nice. It doesn’t feel like a thing for us.
Do you think it would be a problem if you weren’t all good friends?
JJ: I think if we weren’t friends it wouldn’t be fun at all. You would just be like colleagues or something.
SN: I feel really lucky to be in a band with people I love.
JJ: We have each other’s backs on stage. Us against the world.
What gigs are you looking forward to?
JJ: This one right now, at Leeds!
(Image: The VLM, Lucy Ingram)