Interview conducted and written by Rhyan Gaspari
All the way from Scotland, Average Andy is an alternative rock band with great grooves. When I first heard their music, I was really drawn to how unique it was. While every band is focusing on ‘being heavier,’ Average Andy combines intricacy with melody to create something different from the norm.
Photo credit: Stuart Irvine
In the following interview, we spoke with the hilarious guys from Average Andy. You’ll find out which member of the band loves Steel Panther, who believes there’s an oversaturation of “artists,” and when the next Average Andy tour is.
Firstly, please introduce yourselves to the Metal and Melodies readers.
Jaime: AKA, Big Tam
Graeme: LEAD guitarist – unbelievably charming.
Andy: Hello, I am Andy or Mediocris Andicus if you are interested in my Latin name.
Michael: Drum fill intro.
What is the message in Average Andy’s music?
Jaime: Feminist bashing
Andy: The main message is equality. I also like to play games with the lyrics to try to mess with people’s standard way of thinking. Then, there’s a lot of political rants and some pop music.
Graeme: Andy says it’s about equality, I prefer bitchin’ guitar solos – a bit of fun and melody.
When did you know that you wanted to have a career in music?
Jaime: I have a degree in Music Technology after studying session work. I just want to be close to the media industry.
Graeme: When I first saw the wages… and I really enjoyed playing gigs back when I was in school.
Andy: I have always been an artist at heart. My natural forte is drawing. I was in a comic book/anime face when I was 15 until I realized I would have more luck with women as a musician. I have several years of music study under my belt and I am involved with Scottish local music scene but my cultural equity far exceeds my financial equity. Music to me is definitely much more than a hobby to me but currently, not quite a career.
Michael: After my first flam drag.
What are your thoughts on the current state of the music scene?
Jaime: I think on the surface it is poor, but if you look back at the best of times for edgy, boundary-pushing music – be it punk, metal, or Detroit techno, the charts had slumped into mediocrity.
Andy: There’s an oversaturation of “artists” right now. I am against elitism so I am glad everyone can get a bash but overall, standards have become low. The internet is so cluttered. people with talent have to should a little louder to be heard. Now, presence is everything. You could have created the best piece of music the world will ever have the chance to hear but if your profile sucks, then chances are, no one will click play.
Michael: I dropped my stick.
Who inspires you?
Jaime: I love hard playing or a mentality with a harsh reality – the likes of Nick Oliveri, Klaus Flouride, and Johnny Cash.
Graeme: The man in the mirror and Slash.
Andy: Artists of all media, family, friends, nature, human nature… off the top of my head. Bowie, Johnny Cash, Billy Corgan, Kurt Cobain, The Rolling Stones, Lennon…
Michael: LOUD NOISES!
What song best describes you? Why?
Jaime: I think the band is pretty well summarized in Pretty Constitutions which will be on the new EP which will be finished soon.
Graeme: Pretty Constitutions – I had a lot of freedom (FREEDOM!) to go nuts.
Andy: Thriller [by Michael Jackson]. Most people who don’t get me find me animated, creepy, dark, eccentric and sometimes frightening, but never boring.
Michael: The Eastenders theme tune. TOM TOM TOM TOM TOM triplet SNARE!
What is a struggle you face as a musician?
Jaime: It’s making time to be a business person dealing with shady relationships, collecting fans online, and then finding the time to grow and develop your craft.
Graeme: Getting taken seriously. It’s a cynical world.
Andy: [Laughs.] The world wanting me to mature and definitely money.
Michael: Not having enough things to hit.
Tell me a funny story about yourself.
Jaime: I particularly liked our first gig with the current lineup. I had only met Andy before previously and I had two practices with him, just guitar and bass leading up to the gig. On the gig night I met Michael and Graeme. I was running late so we didn’t get to sound check. We literally went right up on stage and straight into it. The PA system blew up, my guitar strap snapped, and I kept getting minor electric shocks from my mic when singing backup. We made it though! Afterwards, a fan who found us online came up and gave us some nice praise.
Graeme: The ex-drummer’s rack tom rolled away in the middle of a set. Classic drum roll!
Andy: On my graduation day, I bruised my groin on a bollard (a short concrete pole – like the ones in parking garages or parking lots.)
Michael: I hit a cowbell. It went clang clang.
What are three bands you really like?
Jaime: Oh boy! I’m enjoying Manic Street Preachers, Black Sabbath, and Metz just now.
Graeme: Steel Panther, Guns N’ Roses, and The Offspring.
Andy: The Smashing Pumpkins, Placebo, and The Rolling Stone.
Michael: Marching, rubber and belly.
What’s in the future for Average Andy?
Jaime: We are self-producing our first recordings with this lineup. I am mixing it, and we’re looking for mastering then hopefully it will straight up online.
Graeme: Gigs, gigs, food, gigs.
Andy: We will be releasing a new EP soon and playing some charity gigs. (Dates to follow.)
Metal and Melodies also wanted the fans to submit questions. Below are questions asked by you!
What song got you into music? -Stuart-John Irvine
Graeme: I started taking guitar lessons when I was about 11. I eventually started learning other songs at home. I think the first song I learned myself may have been Eric Clapton’s Tears In Heaven.
Andy: I had always loved music as a child and I can’t exactly name an artist that started me off. Maybe Nirvana, Green Day, Blink-182, Crowded House, The Red Hot Chilli Peppers, etc.
Michael: Postman Pat, Postman Pat, Postman Pat and his black and white cat!
Hey guys, what has been your favorite gig you’ve played so far? -Chuck Lodes
Jaime: Walkabout gig, (which is available on YouTube.)
Andy: I would say out Buff Club gig, supporting Thermal and a Quarter. They were on the cover of Rolling Stone India magazine that month and the crowd response was fanstastic.
Hey Andy, just a quick question – do you all get along well? Who’s the most annoying member? -Ashley Paton
Andy: I would say me. I am constantly messaging/calling the guys with information about the band. I am very obsessed with gaining bigger and bigger audiences for our music and I don’t reallywant to have a proper job.
Yeah Andy, I was wondering if you could tell me how you got the band together and what are your main influences. -Jaime Wilson
Andy: I knew the other boys were talented players and creative so I thought I would try them out. We have been progressing well, so the lineup was a good choice. I think the whole band enjoys a punk ethos. We are all into fun pop/rock and hooks. Then we also have our individual influences which we bring to the band.
I notice a lot of political themes in your songs. Where do you get your ideas for lyrics from? -Phil McEwan
Andy: For the political themes, I just have to look into injustices around the world. I read loads of books and watch different movies which give me a lot of inspiration. Art and nature inspires me. I am a huge people-watcher and super sensitive so I write about personal reflections and write about relationships between people.
You can catch Average Andy this month playing a few charity gigs here:
Oct. 16 @ Ivory Blacks (Glasgow)
Oct. 19 @ Oxjam Dundee (Glasgow)
Oct. 20 @ Hangar 18 (Glasgow)
Oct. 27 @ Classic Grand (Glasgow)*
Nov. 30 @ Baker’s Nightclub (Kilmarnock)
*Supporting The Ratells
You can also find Average Andy here: