An award-winning band whose members were once the “Sound of South Holland” are back on the music scene again.
A Story To Tell, winners of a music talent contest run by the Lincolnshire Free Press in 2010, released their new single “Nebbiolo Place” on Good Friday.
The band, Spalding pair Mark Smith (31) and Jack Wycherley (27), along with Peterborough-based lead guitarist Sam Wood (26), last made the headlines in 2013 when they released their debut album “Direction”.
Mark, a retail training manager by profession, said: “We did everything we could with the album, then a couple of the guys (bass player Chris Beale (27) and drummer George Wood (26) thought they needed a break.
“Chris and George went to Australia, Sam went travelling round the world, Jack wanted to concentrate on his job and I became a father to two kids.
“But I’ve never stopped writing songs so when Jack, my brother-in-law, said to me ‘Why don’t we start having a bit of a jam together again?’ we thought it was time to entertain our fans again.”
We didn’t go in for Sound of South Holland expecting to win but when we did, it triggered the thought in our minds that ‘We can do this’Mark Smith, A Story To Tell
At their height, A Story To Tell played venues which included Sheffield’s O2 Academy, Rock City in Nottingham, Skegness’s Embassy Theatre and Sound Control in Manchester.
Mark said: “We didn’t go in for the Sound of South Holland competition expecting to win.
“But when we did, it triggered the thought in our minds that ‘We can do this’ and I remember it as the first time that someone said to me ‘Can I have you autograph please?’
“It was the start for us as a five-piece band and we were very lucky afterwards to get a very good support slot on a tour which helped us build our fan base.”
The band’s latest single is based on an area of Western Australia famous for its wine making and Mark described Nebbiolo Place as his “favourite place” in the country.
He said: “‘Nebbiolo Place’ has a bit of meaning to it, so we sent the song to Tom Simkins, presenter of ‘BBC Introducing’ on BBC Radio Lincolnshire and he’s really keen on it which is exciting for us.
“A lot of bands rely on social media to spread the word about them, but we work really hard to meet people and stay behind for chats at gigs.
“We’ve kept our fans up to date on social media as well because you’ve got to test the water and keep people interested.
“After having a break from touring, playing shows and recording, we can make music again because we see A Story To Tell as a passion, not just a hobby.
“We’re also lucky because the fan base we built up before have grown up with us.”
A Story To Tell have a comeback gig in London on June 2 when they will be supporting US alternative rock band Mercy Mode.
Then Mark, Jack and Sam will headline their own show at the Met Lounge, Peterborough, on August 10 as a tribute to one of their fans.
When asked about playing in Spalding, Mark said: “This area is crying out for a music venue because there are some good bands in this area.
“But you have to go further afield to build a fan base and the closest venues for us are in Peterborough, even though we’d be keen to play here if someone could arrange a venue for us.”