North Yorkshires fuzzy blues rockers Scruffy Bear are catching ears everywhere after releasing their latest track ‘Stories of Strange Women’ We put some questions to the band to find out who they are and what makes them tick.
Give us a potted history of the band?
Hi! We’re Scruffy Bear; Georgy, Jack, Sass & Ryan. We started back in 2019 in Manchester after we all left university and now we’re all living together and opening a converted Barn as a grassroots music venue (Pealie’s Barn) on a farm in North Yorkshire. Very random…we know! We really came together over a love for 70s music and food (not 70s food though…lol). We love anything with a groove and some soul to it! We’ve just started a new chapter for us with our new single Stories of Strange Women, which we filmed the music video for in the barn and are looooving the fact we can just head out into the barn to rehearse and write whenever we want!
Who inspired you to start making music?
Jack (Guitar) – For me, it was seeing slash on Guitar Hero 3 when I was 15. There is a level in that game where you have to beat Slash, and I just thought he was so cool and said to myself, that’s what I want to do with my life.
Ryan (Drums) – My brother and I started getting into rock and metal music at the same time and he showed me the Iron Maiden Greatest Hits album – I grabbed a set of chopsticks and was tapping away at anything in my room because Nicko McBrain’s drums were so upfront and wild. It set me off trying to get lessons because I just wanted to do what he did!
Sass (Bass) – I grew up in a very musical family, my Mum and Dad loved their music and were going to gigs as often as they could. My Dad is a drummer and me and my brothers all play, we were constantly listening to as much music as we could growing up, the moment I knew it was the bass I wanted to play was when my Dad took me to see Rush live.
Georgy (Vocal) – I started properly singing in the local church choir with the old ladies when I was about 8 – weirdly! But I remember seeing Misery Business by Paramore on the TV for the first time and was miiiiind blown. How powerful and cool! I knew I wanted to be a part of a band from that moment.
And the one, or maybe two, records that inspired you artistically?
Our music tastes are so eclectic but Hollow Bones and Feral Roots by Rival Sons really speak to all of us – We also all LOVE the Silk Sonic album!
If you’re trying to explain who you sound like to someone that’s never heard you, what do you say?
We’ve been described as ‘Led Zeppelin fronted by Janis Joplin/Tina Turner’ a few times recently which is a HUUUGE compliment! So I think we’d be stupid not to roll with that one from now on….
Tell us about your new track Stories Of Strange Women?
Our new track ‘Stories of Strange Women’ is a message of inspiration to people to always stick to their guns and embrace who they are as people. Be weird, be wonderful and be unique! My lyrics (Georgy) are a reflection of the stories I used to hear growing up about unique people, and how I took solace in these stories which gave me the confidence to embrace my true self. Something we all share in this band – being yourself and being comfortable in your own skin is something that we value strongly, as is something we always try to encompass in our music by incorporating all four of our weird personalities.
Where can we get hold of it?
You can stream the single on all the usual places like Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon Music for now BUT more news to come in early March other ways to get a hold of it… (winky face)
Tell us how you write?
We really like to head out into the Barn together and play as often as we can, that’s how we’ve been coming up with ideas more recently but we’ve all got 1000s of voice notes on our phones of things we’ve written ourselves during our daily lives. The lyrics usually go hand in hand with writing the music. Whilst the guys are jamming I sing a few melodys to myself and type away lyric ideas into my phone.
Tell us about your live show? And how much have you been missing it recently?
We’ve missed playing live so much but luckily we’ve been able to get some more in at the back end of last year – We also have a string of tour dates that are either announced or about to be announced on our social media!
And for anyone who’s in a city/country that we can’t get to just yet we put out Scruffy Bear LIVE as an EP in October last year to show some love to our older tunes and give people a chance to hear us live. We always wanted to show how energetic we are and this EP really gave us a chance to do that!
What can we expect from you in the near future?
We’ve got a special announcement on the 2nd of March which we’re dead excited about! We’re playing Call of the Wild Festival at Lincolnshire ShowGround on the 22nd of May, alongside a headline show at Pealie’s Barn in North Yorkshire and a few dates in Edinburgh, Manchester and Newcastle. We can’t wait – very excited to play some new stuff and jump around on stage again!
Check out the bands new track, Stories Of Strange Women, below: