Band founder ready for homecoming gig after successful 2021

Girls of the Internet will play at The Baths in Ipswich on February 4

Girls of the Internet was founded by Tom Kerridge (back) and saw huge success in 2021. - Credit: Matilda Hill Jenkins

An acclaimed album, nearly 10 million streams in one year, and a record deal - 2021 was quite the year for Girls of the Internet frontman Tom Kerridge. 

The Suffolk musician is about to sign with Defected Records after years of hard work behind the scenes and setbacks now paying off. 

He kicks off the year with a homecoming gig at The Baths, Ipswich, on Friday, February 4. 

He founded Girls of the Internet in 2017, a collective group that works with a variety of artists, including Vania Lima and Linda Muriel of the Brand New Heavies. 

He took the leap after the closure of his business Pump & Grind, in Great Colman Street, in 2016. 

Tom, who lives in Ipswich, said: "After we lost the bar, I lost everything and I didn't really know what to do. 

"You have to move forward and keep going. You are very lucky if you have overnight success.

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"You have to try and try again."

A Suffolk boy with a love of house, disco and soul music, Tom did not write his first song until he was 40. 

He was inspired by the album Ladies of the Eighties and decided his band name would pay homage to it with a modern twist. 

Prior to running Pump & Grind, a popular music venue for local artists, Tom had more than a decade of industry experience.

He studied music following the death of his dad aged 19, began DJing, and ran his own record level from 2004 to 2014, working with Jamie XX, James Blake and Flying Lotus. 

After the business closed he received grants from Start East and The Arts Council and in 2017 released When U Go.

The musician has focused on increasing the band's awareness on streaming platforms - with 23.5m streams since the band launched in 2017, nearly 10m of which were in 2021 alone. 

Tom said: "I know that streaming is going to be the future." 

The performance in Ipswich will be the group's fifth-ever gig, with Covid-19 putting pay to many of the events planned in 2020 and 2021. 

Towards the end of 2021, Girl of the Internet's album Syrup was named one of BBC 6 Music's albums of the year. 

Girls of the Internet will play The Baths on Friday, February 4. 

Mr Kerridge said: "It's exciting to be playing at The Baths. It is a venue with a lot of history. It's great to be part of the rebirth of the venue."