For Cattle & Cane, they like to keep it in the family. Four out of the five members are related, the other is a family friend. Since forming in 2009, the band have built up a strong fanbase for their emotionally-driven tales of inner strength and romantic endearment, culminating in the gloriously infectious and soaring country-pop of debut album ‘Home’.
We talk family, life on the road and album no. two with the band.
You are over half way through your UK tour, how has it been going so far? Best tour yet?
“Definitely! It’s been amazing. We love being on the road playing to new crowds every night!”
Travelling from city to city each day, meeting new people, exploring new places, all these elements make up your life on tour, but has touring surprised you in any way at all?
“Yeah of course. Playing cities we’ve never played before and having big crowds there and people singing back the songs to us. It’s totally new to us. It’s been amazing!”
Assumedly, you spend a lot of time in service stations when you’re on tour, do you have any particular memories that are not so mundane from Cattle & Cane’s motorway journeys?
“We have a TV in our van now! So we spend our journeys watching Max and Paddy, Alan Partridge and Die Hard.”
You’ve gone down the same path as Lucy Rose, in terms of merchandise. You sell your own brand of tea at your shows. Tell us more about that, what drove the decision?
“We LOVE tea. There’s an amazing tea shop where we live The Olde Young Tea House. So we went there and made our own flavour tea (rum and coconut). It’s gone down really well at our shows!”
Harmonies are prominent to Cattle & Cane’s musical expression, as well as both male / female lead vocal parts. When working on a new song, how do you decide who sings what? Does the song just naturally form and take its own course or do you have to fight over who gets each lyric?
“Ha! Well Joe usually has someone in mind for singing when he’s writing a song. And it changes from time to time. There’s songs that Joe used to sing that Helen now sings. It depends what mood we’re in really!”
Four out of the five members of the band are related by blood, what’s it like to be family and make music together?
“Horrible. Don’t ever do it! No, it’s really cool. We all get on (most of the time) and when we don’t we just have a bust up and move on!”
What would your advice be to aspiring singer/songwriters that are still stuck in their bedrooms trying to figure out whether or not to take that first step?
“Keep going. Keep writing, keep practising. Send your music off and try and get as much feedback as you can. If people don’t like it, forget about them, keep going!”
You have a close bond with your fans. Your songs give back to them, pearls of wisdom and heartfelt messages but have your fans taught you anything in return?
“They’ve taught us how important it is to have fans. Without them we couldn’t tour. They’ve taught us how happy they can make us too! Hearing them sing back the songs is the best feeling ever!”
You released your debut album ‘Home’ last year. Are you raring to start work on its follow-up?
“Of course! We’re currently writing our 2nd album as we speak. And we’ll be recording it this Spring!”
Have you started writing any new material?
“Yes, we are always writing new material. We’re playing a few new songs on the road so people will know what to expect from album 2!”
Where do you hope to take the next record – do you have bigger plans for how it will sound?
“It’ll be quite different to the first album. Although, our songs will always be harmony led! We’ll be recording it in Belgium in Spring!”
Cattle & Cane are touring the UK throughout February. Their debut album ‘Home’ is out now, via Quiet Crown Recordings.