Since the release of their debut EP Head Of Steam in 2009 and their first album Fiction, Half-Truths and Downright Lies the following year, Polly and The Billets Doux have been garnering attention and praise for their eclectic mix of gospel, soul, blues, folk, and country.
This four- piece comprising of Polly Perry (lead vocals) Andrew Steen (lead guitar/vocals) Dan Everett (double bass/vocals) and Ben Perry (drums) have toured extensively since. We caught up with them for a quick chat ahead of their return to Cardiff on Thursday 4 June (Four Bars at Dempsey’s).
Who are Polly and Billets Doux?
Basically we are four friends (and individual songwriters) who’s musical tastes span all genres and time!
Where do you draw your musical influences?
Everything we hear and see around us. If you’re not careful you can plunder too often from the same musical gene pool. It’s important to us to keep our influences broad and keep it expanding!
In terms of song writing, how do you approach this?
Generally one of us will put forward the stem of an idea and then the rest of us get our teeth in it until it ends up moulded into a ‘Billets Doux’ shape. It then takes a rigorous road test and is fine tuned.
Having seen you twice last year, you are a band that always seem to be on the road…any interesting or memorable experiences?
A constant stream of memorable experiences but most are only really interesting to us! We’ve seen many highs and lows along the way. Most of the best moments come from Festivals. First time at Glastonbury, Loopallu at sunset and Wychwood for example! On the flip side, a Half-way house and a van on fire were not so great! One great memory is sitting on the beach after a Kent show with the Smugglers Records crew.
Do you prefer performing at festivals or your own shows? Generally festivals. It’s a great feeling winning over a new audience and being part of something much bigger but a packed out show just for you is also a real buzz!
You are currently on tour, what can we expect when you hit the Four Bars?
The usual unpredictable mix of dark folk tales and high energy rock!
Photo from Polly and The Billets Doux Facebook page
Full details of Spring/early Summer tour: