McFly: Why I hate reality tv
EXCLUSIVEIN a time when the label 'boy band' conjures up images of pop tunes, slick dance routines and perfectly manicured teenage lads, McFly are an unusual phenomenon.
IN a time when the label 'boy band' conjures up images of pop tunes, slick dance routines and perfectly manicured teenage lads, McFly are an unusual phenomenon. They play their own instruments, write their own songs and don't have a dance routines in sight.
As they prepare to return to Ipswich for another sell-out gig, HELEN JOHNS spoke to Danny Jones about the buzz of performing live.
AT the age of just 20, Danny Jones has achieved more than most guys his age could dream of.
He's enjoyed a string of hits with McFly, travelled the world and is regularly mobbed by thousands of adoring, screaming fans.
And with the McFly success juggernaut showing no sign of slowing down since the journey began three and a half years ago, Danny says he and the band are having a fantastic time.
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“I love it, it's awesome,” he says of being in the band.
“Going on tour is great and writing songs is great. We write all the time and we've got loads of songs in the pipeline. The tour is going to be about hearing all the singles and new some new songs - it's going to be a great night out and a great event.
“I love seeing the crowd going nuts to the songs and jumping around and being silly.”
Despite his youth, Danny cites his biggest musical influences as being Bruce Springsteen and The Who and says that when it comes to performing, he wants to emulate bands such as the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
“I watched Bruce Springsteen as a kid and I thought 'I want to do that one day' and now I am and it's just amazing.
“What I love watching is bands like the Chilis because they are not like all the other acts who loads of lights and nice stuff around them. With the Chilis they just come on and go nuts for the whole performance, that's a real highlight with them.”
In their time together, McFly have played venues as big as Wembley or the MEN arena in Manchester or as small as theatres like the Regent.
“I like the big and the small gigs,” Danny said. “With the small gigs you get more nervous because the people are right there in front of you, but the big ones are just epic. It is the best feeling, performing is amazing and the best rush you can get.”
But while the Red Hot Chili Peppers are revered in rock circles the world over, being in a band that is most popular with teenage girls means it can be difficult to gain a serious musical reputation.
“It is a struggle to be taken seriously, but if you listen to the tunes and the songs we write it's amazing,” Danny admitted.
“A lot of the bands at the moment are all about being cool and indie, I don't love that music but I prefer it to the rubbish dance songs that use to be everywhere. The typical Top Of The Pops thing used to be to get up there and be a solo artist. Now see more bands coming through again, but we're not cool again because we're a pop band, but the whole thing will come around again.”
He knows he can expect a Regent Theatre full of screaming girls when the band arrives here in April - and while they have yet to attract the serious rock fans, he remains happy to entertain the sell-out crowd:
“There's nothing wrong with lots of teenage girls jumping along to your music. If the people who look down on us came to our gigs they would walk away disappointed. They would walk away genuinely surprised at how good we are at playing. I would say just come along and listen rather than have an image about us straight away.”
And when it comes to other music being made at the moment, Danny also knows exactly what he thinks and it particular the kind of songs and people who are made famous on television talent shows such as The X Factor.
After asking whatever happened to Steve Brookstein, Danny says he thinks the latest winner Leona Lewis won't be given a fair enough chance to hold on to her fame. He wasn't a fan of her debut single which became the Christmas number one.
He said: “Those people get the attention for a week - it's there for a week and then it's over. I feel sorry for them because there's hype when the people win but they just don't stick around.
“If I was Leona's manager I'd want to see her as the next Whitney Houston or Toni Braxton. She has the voice and she needs the songs - the kind of big songs that could be in films and stuff. The songs are bad, they are just cheap and rubbish and it's all over so quickly for them because of that. But she's actually a really good singer.
“The reason she won was because of the kind of songs she sung. I want to write her a really big song, something like I Will Always Love You.”
With McFly's time in the spotlight not looking likely to fade anytime soon, Danny says he wants to keep on making music for as long as he can.
He said: “I thought the excitement about McFly had gone for a bit and it's really nice to have it still and know there is excitement about us.
“As a band we do everything together, we live on the same street and even if we're not always in the band we will always be friends, but I think the band will last forever.”
McFly will be at the Regent Theatre on April 10.
McFly are supporting the Guide Dogs charity's Guiding Stars scheme, and four guide dog puppies have been named after the band members.
The golden retriever pups Dougie, Danny, Tom and Harry are just over three months old and McFly will follow the progress of the pups on their journey to become qualified guide dogs.
As Guiding Stars, the band members will also help the charity to educate young people about the important work of guide dogs.