An Interview With… Republica

With Askern Fest 2022 fast approaching, I’ve been speaking to some of the acts involved for Doncopolitan. Now, these interviews were initially carried out last summer, but we had to shelve them due the event being postponed. The festival is definitely going ahead this year, so it’s time to dust off these interviews and send them out into the world…

Republica have been inactive from touring before (between 2001 and 2008), how has this break from live performances been different, and what have you missed about playing to a live audience?

We chose to have our first break, this one sadly we had no control over! We’ve all missed playing live enormously and are so excited to be back performing this summer, for us, for all our friends and colleagues in other bands, for our fans and for everybody who enjoys live music festivals. 

The live music industry is going to have to adapt to survive, are there any positive changes you’d like to see come into play as a result of the pandemic? 

I feel that we all realise just how much the power of live music performances means to so many people and so going forward to the future, we should all adhere to making sure we are all in a safe and healthy environment with a care for ourselves and others, so we can continue to enjoy special moments at all live music events where there are large numbers of people gathering together. I’d love to see more female artists and bands added to the festival line ups too.
I’ve mostly spent lockdown eating, sleeping and endlessly scrolling between the film libraries of various streaming companies… how has lockdown been for you? Has it been a creative period?

I’ve spent the entire lockdown working in Healthcare as a frontline Keyworker. It’s been hard going, but without my music I’ve been comforted and in fact liberated that I could help and be there for others especially those who are the most vulnerable in our society . Working in mental health is hard at the best of times. I too have watched endless films and drama series from the old classics to modern exciting productions. 

You often find yourselves sharing a bill with some of your contemporaries from the ’90s (Chris Helme, Mark Morriss and the Lightning Seeds are all due to appear at Askern Festival), what is it about that era that still resonates with people?

Are they all playing? How exciting! Mark Morriss is actually my neighbour! I’ve met Chris Helme too. I’m a huge fan of all of them. I think 90’s music resonates with so many people because it represents such an amazing time for music and great songs and bands coming out of the U.K. at that time. The music, culture, fashion, and style of the 90’s was a social revolution, really. It was a time when so many brilliant new exciting bands and rock stars got a chance to shine and the quality and standard of music production, song writing and live performances was very very high. It’s fantastic that we are mostly all still around today, still playing to big audiences, doing great live shows and releasing new music. 

And finally, why are festivals like Askern Festival so important to a village like Askern and a town like Doncaster? 

I truly believe in the future local music festivals will be the lifeblood of local communities bringing people back together, giving everyone a place to enjoy themselves again with a fresh new positive outlook on how lucky we are to still be able to express ourselves freely and safely. Reactivating our love and passion for music, going out locally and bringing lots people together from the community and from afar. We are so looking forward to coming to Doncaster and playing Askern Festival! I’ve spoken to many of my friends who are in other bands and we all feel we just wanna go to as many places as possible to perform and spread some happiness and hope for the future. Music is so important for everyone’s health and mental well-being. 

Thank you Rob, I hope you have all the answers you need! Love Saffron x

That was great, Saffron! Thanks for speaking to us and we’ll see you on July 9th.

For tickets to this year’s Askern Music Fest, click here.