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Archive

  1. 2017
    1. October
      1. OCTOBER NEWS 2017
    2. September
      1. Levellers Paper Cut
      2. Levellers Drumskin Artwork - 1st ever in colour!
    3. August
      1. Last Minute Beautiful Days Information
    4. July
      1. FESTIVAL TICKETS ARE BEING POSTED OUT FROM TODAY!
    5. June
      1. Beautiful Days Festival - Sold Out
      2. Selling out the NHS
      3. June News 2017
    6. April
      1. April News 2017
    7. March
      1. Beautiful Days Line-Up & Theme
    8. February
      1. Beautiful Days Tickets on Sale Today
    9. January
      1. January News 2017 & Beautiful Days
      2. Beautiful Days 2017
      3. OTF Exclusive Pre Order
  2. 2016
    1. November
      1. A Beautiful Day Out
      2. Order Levelling The Land BOX SET from OTF now
      3. Levelling The Land - OUT 18th November!
      4. November News
    2. October
      1. Jon Sevink & Dan Donnelly
      2. Levelling The Land Tour
    3. September
      1. September News 2016
    4. July
      1. Beautiful Days Tickets In The Post
      2. Beautiful Days Tickets - posting next week
      3. Levellers Against Racism T-shirts
    5. June
      1. REMAIN
      2. Levellers US & Canada Tour
      3. Beautiful Days SOLD OUT
      4. June News - Last few ticket for Beautiful Days
    6. May
      1. Tickets for Beautiful Days 2016 are now close to selling out!
    7. April
      1. April News 2016
      2. LEVELLING THE LAND 25TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR
    8. March
      1. Beautiful Days Campervan passes
      2. Beautiful Days News
    9. February
      1. Beautiful Days Festival Discount
    10. January
      1. January News 2016
      2. Beautiful Days Festival 2016
  3. 2015
    1. December
      1. Australia 2016 Levelling the Land Live
      2. Last UK Posting Date for Christmas Parcels
    2. November
      1. December News 2015
      2. Calling all Levellers fans!
      3. November News 2015
      4. The Levellers are giving away a FREE LIVE ALBUM
      5. Two free videos for Levellers On The Fiddle Levellers members
      6. Two free videos for Levellers On The Fiddle Levellers members
      7. Levellers On The Fiddle Membership
    3. August
      1. Free albums - less than one week to go
    4. July
      1. July News 2015
      2. Beautiful Days Tickets In The Post
    5. June
      1. Competition Time!
      2. FREE LEVELLERS ALBUM!
      3. ANOTHER FREE LEVELLERS ALBUM!
      4. DOWNLOAD LIVE AT UNION CHAPEL FREE!
      5. YES, ANOTHER FREE ALBUM!
      6. MEET OUR FACEBOOK PAGE
    6. May
      1. Beautiful Nights - Levellers with special guests Dreadzone and Ruts DC
      2. Thank you from The Gambia
      3. Beautiful Days Tickets Sold Out
      4. New T-Shirts & Vests In The Shop Section
      5. Tickets very close to selling out for the 2015 festival!
    7. April
      1. Download A Curious Life from iTunes
      2. Stream A CURIOUS LIFE Now!
      3. A Curious Life Postcard Set
    8. March
      1. Beautiful Days Line-up and theme announced!
      2. A CURIOUS LIFE DVD+CD Pre-order @ OTF
      3. Watch the new Interrobang‽ video
      4. March Newsletter 2015
      5. New On The Fiddle 7"Single - Interrobang‽
    9. February
      1. ‘A Curious Life’ film on DVD! Out on 27 April
      2. Original Print of Carry Me 1/1 signed & Framed
      3. FEBRUARY NEWS
      4. BEAUTIFUL DAYS 2015 - ON SALE FRIDAY 06 FEBRUARY @ 10AM
      5. Levellers Vinyl Bundle for £27
    10. January
      1. Mark Chadwick Vinyl & CD Bundles
      2. January News
      3. What a Beautiful Day / Circus Starr Showreel
  4. 2014
    1. December
      1. Christmas Orders UK
    2. November
      1. BEAUTIFUL DAYS 2015
      2. Greatest Hits Triple Vinyl OUT NOW!
      3. CLASSIC ROCK + BBC ONE THE ONE SHOW
      4. LEARN TO PLAY WHAT A BEAUTIFUL DAY
      5. Just The One - New Video, CD &7"
    3. October
      1. 'A CURIOUS LIFE' & LEVELLERS ACOUSTIC 2015 TOUR
    4. September
      1. An Interview with Jeremy
      2. GREATEST HITS 2CD/DVD OUT NOW!
      3. Levellers Competition
      4. New single & Spotify EP
      5. New single - Beautiful Day (feat. Imelda May)
      6. September News 2014
    5. August
      1. A Curious Life at the Cambridge Film Festival
      2. German Album Launch show & screening of film ‘A Curious Life’
    6. July
      1. Beautiful Days festival tickets
      2. Watch Frank Turner in the studio covering Levellers early 90s classic 'Julie'
      3. Levellers Greatest Hits
    7. June
      1. Mark Chadwick's new album 'Moment' now available in our shop
      2. Levellers - A CURIOUS LIFE:
    8. May
      1. Levellers film 'A Curious Life' - Film Review
      2. Beautiful Days Acts last acts announced
    9. April
      1. Get Mark Chadwick's Red Sky now!
      2. Mark Chadwick's new album "Moment"
    10. March
      1. Levellers - Carry Me EP Reissue
      2. Mark Chadwick - Red Sky 7"
      3. McDermott’s 2 Hours/Levellers - Dirty Davey
      4. Levellers News March 2014
    11. February
      1. February News 2014
  5. 2013
    1. December
      1. December News 2013
    2. October
      1. Levelling The Land Live At Brixton Academy
    3. August
      1. News
    4. July
      1. The Levellers are going to be joining New Model Army in Germany
      2. July News 2013
    5. June
      1. Levellers News 2 June 2013
      2. June News
      3. False listing
    6. May
      1. Beautiful Days Sold Out
      2. Important Announcement
    7. April
      1. Levellers News April 2013
    8. March
      1. New Single - Recruiting Sergeant
      2. Download Static On The Airwaves Deluxe for £7.49 until 27th March
      3. March News 2013
      4. Levellers on tour in May & June
    9. February
      1. February Newsletter 2013
    10. January
      1. Old Levellers T-Shirts
  6. 2012
    1. December
      1. Levellers December Newsletter 2012
    2. November
      1. Levellers tour UK in November
      2. November 2012 News
    3. October
      1. Do You Want To Join The Levellers On Stage In November?
      2. Jeremy & Jon's Stage Shirts
      3. Simon Friends Seismic Survey Touring December 2012
      4. New Levellers Mailing List
      5. UK Festival Awards
    4. September
      1. Levellers On Tour In The UK And Europe
    5. August
      1. Beautiful Days
    6. July
      1. NEW VIDEO & SINGLE – WE ARE ALL GUNMEN
      2. LEVELLERS PLAY FREE SHOW IN LONDON ’S HYDE PARK TOMORROW NIGHT!
    7. June
      1. Album Around The World
      2. New Levellers Videos
      3. Avebury Rocks 20 Mile Walk
      4. New Album - Static On The Airwaves
      5. New Album T-Shirts
      6. Autumn 2012 Tours Announced
    8. May
      1. Limited Stock T-Shirt Designs

An Interview with Jeremy

Interview with Jeremy Cunningham

Written by Simon Alcock
 

Since their formation in 1988, The Levellers have pumped out a constant stream of albums, singles and live performances. They have their own festival, Beautiful Days, which they boast has no sponsorship, no branding and does not advertise and yet manages to sell out.

For 26 years they have stridently given voice to their worldview wrapped up in a series of melodies you could easily find yourself singing on the way to work. They’ve decided to take stock of their back catalogue and are releasing a greatest hits album which they are promoting with a tour in November. I caught up with bassist/lyricist/artist Jeremy Cunningham to find out a bit more about the band’s current activity.

I started by asking how the band approached the compilation of the album 

We just decided to put all our singles on there, it was a pretty simple decision, but we did want to make things a bit more interesting. Most of the single versions of our songs are different to the album versions. We always used to, and still do, re-record singles just to make them different. We also did some collaborations to add a new dimension to it

How did you decide upon the people you’ve collaborated with? (Imelda May, Frank Turner, Billy Bragg and Bellowhead) 

They are people we know, people we are friends with, we like their outlook on things. We thought they’d be interesting if they worked on our material and they were up for it.

With the four tracks you’ve done, did you give any part of the creative process over to your collaborators and say “Here you are, do something with it”?

All of it, that was the whole thing for us. We said if you’re up for it, choose a song, rearrange it and we’ll be your backing band. We recorded all of it live. It was all so easy from our point of view, although it was tricky with Bellowhead, having to record 13 people live at the same time!  

Have you got any favourites amongst the collaborations?

Imelda May’s vocal is so good on Beautiful Day, I’ve got to love that even though personally it’s not one of my favourite songs of ours. It’s a great pop song and I think she really brought something to it. I love the chaos of the Bellowhead one (‘Just The One’) and Billy Bragg’s (‘Hope Street’) is the one that grew on me the most. I’m a big fan of Frank Turner (who did ‘Julie’), there’s a massive amount of commitment he brings to stuff and he’s a genuinely nice guy.  

When you tour in November, you’re supported by The Selecter and She Makes War. Did you hand-pick who joined you?

Kind of. There’s always a pool of guys who want to do it. We personally really wanted Laura from She Makes War as she’s new and we think she deserves a platform. The Selecter have played at Beautiful Days and they are an awesome live band.

With the number of tracks you’ve got to choose from, how will you decide which songs to include in your live set?

There’s a core that we will have to do as they are the biggest hits. We rotate the other ones to keep us interested and the audience interested. We also think about the stage, the lighting, I do all the art work, so I also have to think about the backdrop 

Do the various members of the band fight the corner for certain songs and do you ever get into arguments over what you’ll play?

We get into arguments all the time, but not so much over what we’ll play as we rotate it. When we rehearse for a tour, we practise more songs than we need so we can keep changing it. The thing about us is we’re all mates, so if someone has a strong opinion then we’ll usually go with it.  

Once you’ve got the greatest hits out of the way have you thought about what happens to the band immediately afterwards?

We’re writing a new album and have been for a little while. It’s always forward, forward, forward for us. This is a Greatest Hits Tour, it’s not the end!

Is there any subject matter which keeps coming up in the material you’re writing?

It’s conflict mainly. Now it tends to be global conflict whereas when we started it tended to be about inter-UK conflict. Mark, Simon and I write the lyrics, Jon and Matt write the music and we all arrange it

You’ve got your own ‘Beautiful Days’ event, but I can remember seeing the band several years ago at the ‘V’ festival on a day when you appeared to have a spat with the Manic Street Preachers. Have you got any ambitions to go back to doing any of the more mainstream festivals?

It was that ‘V’ festival that made us do ‘Beautiful Days’. I don’t know what happened with The Manics. I respect what they do and they are one of the few bands who have reached a much more mainstream audience with a left wing perspective. That’s terrific, hats off to them. V98 was just an awful, horrible day. We still do Glastonbury occasionally and we do some big ones in Europe   

You’ve always been a band who haven’t shied away from expressing your opinions. Have any of you ever thought about getting involved in politics?

No. Dirty, filthy business. We’ll be on the outside for our whole lives

Posted: 30th Sep 14