Band of the Day: Liam Naughton and The Educators

A one man / two bands of the day. Kind of. It makes sense if you read it. Honest…

Simple things first – where are you guys from?

We’re based out of Perth Australia but I’m Irish. I also have a UK version of The Educators.

How did you meet?

When I finished my first EP Cornerstone I got the band together to support the release. There’s been a few line up changes but we’ve been steady since my Leaning In LP.

How long have you been playing as a band?

Hmmmmmhhh… about 6 years.

Before you get sick of being asked… where does the band name come from?

Well the Liam Naughton part came from my mum and dad. When I do something I always like it to have relevance and not just drag something randomly out of the sky. That’ll do, no it won’t do, there’s got to be a meaning to it. All of the other musicians in the group are music teachers, hence  The Educators. My late dad was also a teacher so I thought it was a good fit.

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What are your influences?

Hmmm…. I have a wide spectrum of interests. We’re products of our environment right. My dad was big into classical and opera, my mum more the mainstream radio so I grew up with those. As I got older I went more for the rock / alternative genre but I’ll take any snippet from any genre that’s good. I’m open to anything that sounds good. Am I going off the point? OK, bands that I thought were great and set themselves apart from the crowd; unique acts like The Beatles (from ’66 on), The Doors, Neil Young, Johnny Cash, Nirvana, Radiohead have influenced me to do what I like rather than what I think people will like to listen to.

Describe your music. What makes you unique?

Hmmm… well you’ll have to listen but the style is unique and even though you might say “that one’s a bit like” or “that’s similar to” you won’t be able to pin it down to anything one thing exactly. It’s pretty fresh, you’ll hear with lots of colour and you’ll find something new with every listen. There’s a lot of variety in there but there’s a consistency too.

Do you have any particular lyrical themes?

I’m a bit all over the place. I’ve written about mental illness, life, love, loss, fascism, addiction.

What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?

We’ve played over a 100 shows. I’ve started getting chattier between songs, engaging with the audience more and I like a joke. But yeah, me thinks there’s something in there for everyone. The band sounds great and are really digging the show. You won’t feel short changed unless you thought you were going to a strip show

What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?

We toured Western Australia one time, and were pinned in to play at The Nannup Music Festival. We had a last minute fill in bass player for that gig and nobody really knew too much about him. Bit of a risk but we were desperate. It was the last day of the festival and we were all celebrating and very fucking pissed. My tuner has also crapped out on me that morning so I bought a new one and wasn’t really paying too much attention when I bought it. Should have read the label.

The show started and we sounded shit. What the fuck, it was my guitar. Turned out the tuner I bought was for a trumpet and that’s why it wasn’t sitting properly on the guitar neck so my tuning was all over the place. Anyway I borrowed this Bass dude’s tuner, got sorted and we started again. The crowd were getting a bit agro at this stage. What else could go wrong? Next minute, the cops turned up and stopped the show ’cause this fill in bass dude hadn’t payed a whole heap of fines and turned out he was on an arrest warrant. Yeah, that was a bit of a disaster.

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What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.?

I’m a fan of the Stratocaster with the Fender deluxe reverb amp.

What are your plans for the next 12 months?

I had taken a year off my day job to move to the bright lights of London, hook up with Cameron (our lead guitarist) and launch an assault on the Irish and UK music scene. I mean, what better place to test your wares against all of the up and coming acts in one of the main centres for music. I wasn’t fazed either, I felt that I had some good horses in my stable and was ready to bang some doors down. I’d a bunch of shows lined up across Ireland and the UK so what could possibly go wrong???? Holy Fuck, for once I didn’t derail my own train, Covid-19 did it for me.

The pandemic showed me though that you could get good work done without being in the same country. To finish off the Cut On A Cut EP it was an international collaboration with Cameron Hayes (our lead guitarist) in a London studio, me in a Perth studio (returned to Perth ’cause of the pandemic), producing and mixing in London with The Animal Farm and mastering in Sydney. So touring now is a bit hard to plan with this virus still flying around, border closures and God knows what’s next. I have another album ready to go so I’ll get a home recording studio and get some quality demos done. Not sure if I’m going to get a producer involved this time or not but could be good to go in a different musical direction than before.

If you were second on a three-band bill, which band would you love to be supporting and which band would you choose to open for you? A chance to plug someone you’ve toured with, or a mate’s band we’ve not heard of before!

Top of the bill I’d like to support Another Sky and our support to be Scatterchild outa London.

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