It’s amazing what appearing in an youth theatre production of Billy Elliot can lead to.
In the case of Jess Cunnah and Danny Marland it is a band that is already getting good gigs and earning decent money, with the possibility of making it big.
The pair met during a production of Billy Elliot The Musical at the Grand Theatre, when they were both at Fame School.
They found they shared a love of the same music, and after Danny introduced his mate Harrison Clark into the mix, the band Belvadere was formed. Well, actually it was Belvedere with an ‘e’ in the middle at first.
“Belvedere means a high point with a nice view, plus I live on Belvedere Road, so that’s where it came from,” explained Jess.
“But then we put out a song on iTunes and discovered there was this Canadian band with the same name already on iTunes.
“So we had to change our name slightly, stick an ‘a’ in. I think the word is slang for a young musical student though, so it sort of fits.”
Whatever, this Blackpool trio, despite all being the tender age of 17, have covered a lot of ground in a short space of time.
“We only got together five months ago but the first time we jammed it just clicked. We all got on, the music was good, and we made a video of Little Talks by Of Monsters and Men - it just seemed to work and it’s gone from there,” Jess added.
The band - made up of Jess’s beautiful vocals, Harrison’s guitar and Danny’s piano and banjo playing - have worked hard and already have two hours of material. That’s mainly covers but they also throw their own tunes in from time to time.
They describe their sound as modern folk, Mumford and Sons-ish, with a bit of jazz thrown in.
All are studying for their A levels at Blackpool Sixth Form College, indeed Jess ended our conversation by saying ‘I’ll have to go now - my lesson’s started’.
Before she disappeared, she added: “This is the only thing we want to do - make music. All of us know how important it is to do our A levels but then we are thinking about perhaps taking a year out and seeing what we can do.”
Belvadere, who are playing at Toast in St Annes on Saturday, are without doubt a band to keep an eye on.
Good luck to them.