The Questionnaires - new album, 'Atlantic Ridge': "..a 'comeback' after all these years. Crazy!"
NEW ALBUM from - THE QUESTIONNAIRES: ‘Atlantic Ridge’ (BoomChang Records)
Release: 15th January 2021. Available from Bandcamp and most digital platforms
The new single ‘Heavy Heart’ out now
“…a cut above the rest ........." Squib, UK
"Staggeringly beautiful music ..." Get Rhythm, UK
The Questionnaires are from Newcastle upon Tyne in Northern England. Jane Wade and Steve Hall play guitars, sing and write songs. They've both been around a bit.
Featuring the cream of Tyneside session musicians, the music of ‘Atlantic Ridge’ flows in a current of Americana and rootsy, intelli-pop that sees Jane and Steve’s return to the fray of the music industry – in Steve’s case - after 30 years in academia! Well, what we *used* to call ‘the music industry’ anyway…
“Making a ‘comeback’ after all these years is crazy, but there you go”
The band that so beautifully combine with Jane and Steve to give the warmth and sympathetic bite of ‘Atlantic Ridge’ includes bassist Steve Cunningham (Lindisfarne); Jim Hornsby (Prelude, Martin Stephenson); Steve Dolder (Glenn Tilbrook, Sid Griffin, Paddy McAloon, etc); Connecticut, USA- born Niles Krieger (Assembly Lane, The Often Herd) and special guests Liam Fender, Les Watts, Roy Pearson and Bevan Morris.
As a young guitarist - and motivated by the playing of Steve Cropper, Freddie King and Terry Kath (Chicago) in particular- it was with Newcastle legends the Eastside Torpedoes that Steve began to gain a formidable reputation that has since seen him play alongside Herbie Hancock and Tony Williams (Miles Davis). The Torpedoes debut album was produced by ex-Jimi Hendrix Manager, Chas Chandler and co-incidentally, it was whilst Steve was with his previous band (who included The Animals’ Hilton Valentine on rhythm guitar) that he was ‘head hunted’ for the Torpedoes, who were apparently one of promoter Harvey Goldsmiths’ favourite ‘live’ bands. Performing in front of over 20,000 people in support of Ray Charles at Knebworth Jazz Festival was just one highlight of their busy ‘live’ schedule. Great things were expected of them, signing a four-year deal with EMI following their success in a prestigious ‘Melody Maker’ competition.
In the 1980s, Steve left music to forge a career in academia. Now an Emeritus Professor of Criminology, his work has been published alongside leading intellectuals such as Jean Baudrillard, and Slavoj Zizek. He has written and co-written 11 books, most recently ‘The Rise of the Right’.
Jane sang with all-woman band Jazawaki in the 1980s, signed to Abstract Records, releasing the cult single Don’t Panic, and touring Britain and Europe, appearing on local and national television (BBC North East, ‘Check it Out’ Tyne Tees and ‘The Oxford Road Show’). There were also BBC Radio 1 sessions for Janice Long, as well as ‘live’ sessions for Capital Radio. Influential presenter and author Charlie Gillett was a fan. Jane’s music work has been interspersed with acting jobs including ‘Lush Life’, featuring the songs of Ella Fitzgerald at Live Theatre, Newcastle (where she has also performed one-woman shows about 50’s-60’s pop singer Alma Cogan and chanteuse Lotte Lenya) and a highly acclaimed revival of Alan Plater’s ‘Close the Coalhouse Door’ for Northern Stage. Most recently, she appeared in the multi-award winning Beyond the End of the Road for November Club. She has also been commissioned to write songs and music for a variety of theatre productions and to provide musical direction.
One of the best voices in the business, Jane has sung on National TV ads and is known as Northern England's finest interpreter of the songs of Kurt Weill. An in-demand vocal coach, she is a renowned singer in her home city of Newcastle upon Tyne and has been compared to both Annie Lennox and Helen Watson for her strong, smoky vocal delivery. Jane also gained much acclaim in reviews for her duet with Billy Mitchell (Lindisfarne, Jack The Lad) included on his 2005 album, ‘The Devil’s Ground’ and has also worked with John Miles (Tina Turner, Joe Cocker, Alan Parsons Project).
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