By Cat Schaupp
August 5, 2013
7 nights, 700 miles, 5 hostels, 3 musicians.
Today marks the start of a very exciting adventure, as up-and-coming band The Intermission Project join the YHA (Youth Hostelling Association) and buckle in for a seven day road trip around South England and Wales. Leaving from YHA St.Paul’s in London later today, the band will be taking to the road in a custom 1970s camper van and casting some of their acoustic folk magic in some of the country’s prettiest spots, as well as getting involved in some local, fun, and extreme activities that will be broadcast on social media. After kicking things off with a campfire session on 6th August at YHA Danywenallt in Wales, The Intermission Project will be stopping at YHA Bristol – housed in a former grain mill – on the 8th August, and stopping at YHA Treyarnon in Cornwall for a secret, soon to be announced gig on one of the local beaches, before heading back to YHA St. Paul’s for a roof-top, home-coming session on the 12th August.
It’s been a good year for The Intermission Project. They’ve recently finished recording three tracks for their debut EP at Vale Studios, shortly to be released online, and have a summer packed with festival dates including Green Man, Kendall Calling and The Great Escape. Not only that, but the band has attracted the attention of BBC Introducing and Tom Robinson on BBC 6 Music. Quite an achievement for three 18 year olds. Not that music is anything new in the lives of band members Jim Rubaduka (guitar / lead vocals), Alex Stevens (electric guitar / vox), and Charlie Campbell (drums / vox): while Alex was an avid Bob Marley fan as a teenager, lead singer Jim tells us that ‘Charlie started beating pots and pans around the house before he could walk’, and that he himself was heavily influenced by the music his parents played around the house, and started writing songs as soon as he could play the guitar. While Jim and Alex first met at primary school, and bonded over ‘plans to move to America and become professional NBA players’, it wasn’t until their paths crossed again in Sixth Form College in Ashford in 2011 that the two formed the band, bringing in Charlie later on to round off the ensemble. Musical influences such as Jon Foreman, Ryan O’Neal, Foy Vance and Bruce Springsteen infuse the band’s music – an intricately crafted fusion of acoustic, folk, and soul sounds – with Jim crediting these musicians for ‘really getting me thinking about what I’m writing’.
The band are looking forward to the YHA Road Trip with enthusiasm: first approached about the Road Trip by The Mahogany Blog (who run one of the UK’s leading YouTube channels for showcasing acoustic performances, and who will also be hitting the road to record the band’s experiences for broadcast on You Tube), the band see the trip as a great chance to not only explore the country (‘The Cornwall leg of the trip is really appealing, yet the chance to visit Bristol again is also great’, Jim says), but to dive headfirst into the hosteling experience and head home with a ‘few stories’. Jim’s even optimistic about the long hours the band will spend in the camper van, hoping that travelling in a ‘hippymobile’ will result in nothing but ‘peace and harmony in the van’… except for the fact that ‘Charlie talks really loud in his sleep’. It’s not only Jim who’s excited about the coming week, with the chances it’ll bring to meet new people and fans on the road, with Alex summing up his expectations with the words ‘Fun, music and more fun’, while Charlie hoping that the road trip will be a chance to ‘party, party, party’.
It’s not only the boys from The Intermission Project who are looking forward to the adventures of the coming week – the YHA are also thrilled to be teaming up with the band for the Road Trip. Having been introduced to the band via The Mahogany Blog, the YHA decided that the Road Trip was the ideal way ‘to put all our support behind his one band to enable them to become a real success in 2013/2014′. The Road Trip has been put together with the specific aim of ‘reinvigorating’ the YHA’s links with the 18-30 age group, and the organisation is chuffed to have found a band which ‘such relevance to the YHA brand’: ‘The lads couldn’t be a more perfect fit for this project; their music is fantastic and we’re really proud to be supporting them. This is a first for YHA and a first for the band. If they are a success, it will be YHA who have put them on the map – quite literally!’.
As well as putting The Intermission Project on the map, in bringing their music to a wider audience, the Road Trip is a great opportunity for the YHA to showcase itself. As a charity with an 80 year history, the organisation is a great British institution. As well as the fact that ‘every penny from a stay goes towards maintaining our unique hostels, keeping prices affordable, and enriching the lives of young people’, the YHA’s supporters have also enabled the organisation to ‘set up Breaks for Kids, Family Activity Breaks for bereaved military families, summer camps, volunteering, and work experience. In short, our supporters enable us to make a real difference to young people’s lives – whatever their background and challenges’. Especially at a time when more and more people are choosing to holiday at home rather than travelling abroad, the YHA has much to offer those wanting to strike out and try something new: costing from as little as £12 per person per night, and housed in locations including castles, friaries, granaries and accommodation perched on cliff-tops, the YHA allows ‘people to experience amazing locations that would otherwise be unaccessible to them. All of this is what makes the YHA unique [...] for anyone wanting to get more involved, it’s easy. Stay with us. And while you’re there, buy a coffee, a slice of homemade cake, or a delicious dinner. Become a member, volunteer, donate, fundraise, or simple share your photos and stories. Because the more people that stay with us, the more people we can reach and inspire’.
If you’re interested in getting on the road yourself and supporting the YHA’s Road Trip, you can find out more – and register for free tickets to the dates on the Road Trip, in addition to great rates on accommodation - at the Road Trip website or on Facebook. Should a night spent around the campfire with The Intermission Project whet your appetite for checking out the band’s other live dates this summer, you can catch them at Green Man (15 – 17 August) and Shambala (22nd – 25th August) where they’ll be playing the Chai Wallis stage.