Rachael Wass

An interview with Patawawa

Patawawa describe themselves as a ‘Nu Disco’ trio and with about a month’s worth of tours lined up, their half-way gig in Sheffield was impossible to miss. Before their sensational set I had the absolute pleasure of catching up with members Beth, Sam and Rory to talk about what’s been happening so far!


Rachael: What’s the response to your tour been like so far?

Patawawa: Well, France (Paris) was AMAZING, there was such a good response: such a responsive crowd! People were singing along and that kind of thing so it was all nice. And we’re looking forward to tonight and tomorrow, we think they’re gonna be our local ones and hopefully have a good crowd.

Rachael: Do you feel that it’s easy for crowds to get into your music? Especially for those who either might not really know who you are or have just come to your gig to give it a go?

Patawawa: It all depends on the crowd! We get quite lucky quite often and people seem to enjoy it. But every band gets those gigs where there’s a crowd of about 5 people and they’re all stood around just watching. You win some, you lose some! But we hopefully try to get people up and dancing and I think we succeed. Big Feastival though… everybody sat on the floor! It was a children’s thing though, but turns out kids don’t like our music! (Yeah, kids with dads don’t like our music!)

Rachael: it’s just getting them into the good stuff slowly!

Patawawa: Yeah, or just eventually getting them up to their feet!

Rachael: How would you describe your genre?

Patawawa: Pop music? Or indie disco I’d say…That’s what I’ve been telling people anyway!

Rachael: Your music is so different to what is out in the charts at the moment, do you enjoy having that element of being so original?

Patawawa: It depends really… It’s both good and bad. Obviously we love the music that we make, and the sound that we’ve got is because of the music that we like. But it does make it difficult because people might find us as a bit of a risk. I think it’s hard because the music we perform isn’t ‘popular’ it’s hard to try and find the gap to fit in. We’re sure there is one, but it’s not hugely popular and therefore not as easy to access, which is why it’s taking us time to build up. We’ll definitely take over the world of disco though! One day everyone will like it!

Rachael: Who inspires you?

Patawawa: All sorts of people really! Everything from 70s until now is what we learn from. (Beth) I love the 80’s. 80’s pop is my thing. I love Talking Heads¸ Kate Bush, Alphaville! It’s hard to think on the spot! Anything that is super, super cheesy, I love it. (Sam) I love a lot of indie but a lot of new disco stuff as well, I like a lot of modern stuff. (Rory) Sam loves the synths! (Sam) Yep, I’ve got a new one there, it’s premiering tonight!

Rachael: Talking of the 80’s and 80’s music, have you seen Stranger Things?

Patawawa: YES! I love it, love it, love it. (Beth) I finished it today actually. So good and so emotional.

Rachael: When I finished watching I spent all day channelling my inner 80’s alter-ego!

Patawawa: Haha! Best way to do it.

Rachael: You have played at some festivals, do you prefer a bigger crowd or a smaller one like tonight’s?

Patawawa: It does depend, but smaller ones like this and when you’re doing a headline show, you feel like everyone’s coming to see you, and then it feels like a much nicer and less stressful thing. When you’re at a festival  (especially if no-one’s ever seen you before), you have to work to try and expand your fan-base. But yeah, I’d say smaller. (Rory) I think the same, but then if you fill up a big room or a big tent, it is a really good feeling. It’s bad being put on a big stage at a festival and then no one coming, because then you have all that empty air out there! (Sam) So if any festival bookers are listening, don’t put us on early either! (Beth) Haha! Yeah that is a bit of a mood killer, going on at midday!

Rachael: What’s your favourite show that you’ve ever done?

Patawawa: (Beth) I think that the first every YNOT? that we did on the BBC Introducing stage because I was so, unbelievably shocked. I never thought that many people would come, that people would get so into it, that people would sing along! It was all our home crowd and there were people that we knew. That for me was the point when I was like ‘Oh my God. This is amazing.’ (Sam) Definitely. I think all the YNOT?s that we’ve done so far, even this year was crazy. People jumping up and down and singing along. It’s such a good feeling when you know that people are taking the time to listen to you and come to your shows. So yeah, for me YNOT? (Beth) Even though it was the worst festival ever this year!

Rachael: If you picture yourself in 5 years, where would you like to be?

Patawawa:  (Beth) A bit fatter? Watching telly? (Rory) I think we can all agree on that one! (Sam) Yeah definitely! But I would like to be performing full time, but hopefully, fingers-crossed, that that’ll come before 5 years time. My dream is to always do anything full time, and anything that comes on top of that is a bonus. (Rory) I think that’s been the dream for all of us. (Beth) I’m thinking island, a speedboat, a chauffer. (Rory) Hopefully disco will treat us well, and come back into fashion!

Rachael: If you could have one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Patawawa: (Sam) If I could go back to year 7 and year 8 at school, it’d be turkey twizzlers. But Jamie Oliver has ruined that! I’d be so fat! (Beth) I think I want to say grapes? I just love them so much. (Sam) Someone will be feeding them to you in 5 years time! (Beth) Yes! By some really nice, oiled up man, feeding me grapes while I’m on a chaise-long. Mmm grapes… (Rory) I’m gonna have to say scotch eggs at the minute! I eat about a thousand a day at the moment so scotch eggs it is.

Check out Patawawa’s song ‘Red and White’ on the link below and have a good ol’ boogie:


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