Name: THE GARAGE FLOWERS
Mission: TO HAVE A DOCUMENTARY MADE ABOUT US, AND HAVE IT NARRATED BY ALAN CLAYSON
This week’s feature on The Spiralling is thanks to Harri Larkin who I wrote about a few weeks ago. One of her friends, Joe Capaldi, saw the article and sent me a message and asked me to take a look at his band, The Garage Flowers, describing them as “ambitious upstarts, dolled up tarts – minesweeper extraordinaires. Currently homeless, jobless and clueless.” I caught up with him and his band mate Jonny.
The band is comprised of Joe Capaldi (Vocals/Guitar), Jonny Webber (Lead Guitar), Greg Edwards (Drums) and they’re currently looking for a full time bassist. “I met Joe at the annual John Denver convention on the south coast of Iceland. It was frosty and the flights costly. Surprisingly, we were the only two there” said Jonny. Despite meeting so far away, Joe and Jonny both started their lives a lot closer to each other, exactly 3 weeks apart in Southmead Hospital in Bristol at the start of 1992.
Joe and Jonny have been making music together for 2 years but the band only came to blossom in late 2015 in Bristol. “After taking it as far as we could in a city obsessed with drag music, we threw all our stuff in the back of our car and moved to the big city, ditched the comfort of our 1 bedroom, rat infested Bristol flat, to sleep on rat infested Whitechapel floors. But we do it because we want to be the best band on the planet, and to show the Shoegaze bands how it’s done.”
When I asked Joe why they’d chosen The Garage Flowers as the name of the band he said it was because “the name just works on so many levels, something beautiful left to rot in a dark place, hidden away from the world, a hopeless romantic who buys his girlfriend flowers from a garage and I like the opposite…ness of it.” Musically the band take their influences from “David Brent monologues and Paul Gascoigne’s actions – uncensored passion.”
The band certainly have got up to some amusingly risky things as well as battling the difficulties of trying to make it as a band. “One specific venue booked us on the promise of free drinks. Upon arrival, we were told this wasn’t the case – so we took matters into our own hands and liberated a 40 pint keg from their cellar and threw it in the back of our car.” Jonny mentioned another story. “After 4 nights of sleeping in the car on our first tour, we couldn’t bare another so we decided to sleep on the porch of the venue unbeknown to the owner. What we didn’t count on was said owner mistaking us for hobos and waking us up at gunpoint at around 4am. After a brief standoff he realised who we were and gave us a bed for the night. Top bloke.”
One of the biggest things the band has had to overcome is uncertainty. “Waking up every morning and not knowing where you’ll sleep that night can be tough coupled with having absolutely no money. As well as sleeping for days in our car, the only way we could eat was by stealing carrots from an allotment – we had bloody good eyesight for a while though! We’re big fans of the Winston Churchill quote; “Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm,” so we keep each other in check – everyday is a beautiful car crash.”
If you want to catch these guys getting up to some mischief you can keep up to date with their gigs through Facebook. “It’s tough going promoting gigs at the moment as Joe has glandular fever so we’ve have had to cancel a few of our upcoming gigs.” Their next scheduled gig is on the 23rd of June, The Finsbury, Green Lanes, London.