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  DALE HODGKINSON: IN CONVERSATION ABOUT THE PECKHAM COWBOYS

Gary 'Rockulus' Clarke

Rockulus Maximus

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peckham cowboys

There's a band based in London which have two studio albums to their name. Both albums shine brightly with creativity and hold dear to their bosom the principle that rules do not apply.

Guitarist Dale Hodgkinson is a co-founder of The Peckham Cowboys and was very kind to take some time out of his busy schedule to chat to MetalTalk.

After some friendly banter about lamp-shades and waxing lyrical about Rock n' Roll, I asked Dale what made him pick up the guitar in the first place.

Article continues below...

   


Dale: "I think I was about 15. I was quite old when I first picked the guitar up. Always loved music you know; Elvis Presley that did it for me. As I got a bit older I got into The Beatles – Well they'd obviously finished by then and Elvis was well dead by the time I got in to him. Then I think it was Adam and the Ants that really did it for me and I thought – that looks good as well."

Dale then adds to his answer some of his experience before joining The Peckham Cowboys.

Dale: "I've been in various bands. I suppose the biggest stint that I did with a well known band called And Also The Trees; UK band, pretty big in the rest of the world; sort of underground worldwide success – I did a couple of years with them and got to tour around everywhere which is brilliant. Then I joined Dogkennel Hill which was a band that Guy Bailey (The Quireboys) had put together with a mutual friend of ours called Tim Bewlay, and Tim still does that band. It was through Tim that I met Guy over a number of years, and the seeds were sown for The Peckham Cowboys."

Joining the dots, I then took Dale to their debut album 'Flog It!' and left him to fill in the blanks.

Dale: "I formed the band with Guy and Marc Eden. How that came about was that Marc and I knew each other indecently of Guy, we all knew each other but not together you know. It was a few years ago but it was Guy's birthday and there was a whole group of us around at his house for a bit of an after-party and we were back in Peckham."

peckham cowboys

Dale informed me that an impromptu recording session took place which has never seen the light of day which was an acoustic-blues style with a country-esque feel to it. It took several more of these laid back encounters where jamming songs together became something so enjoyable that they naturally said - why not make an album?

Dale: "Marc nicknamed the project if you like, or the little musical recording venture that we were doing The Peckham Cowboys. Everyone was living in South London; we were recording it in Peckham just off the Old Kent Road. At the time I was working for a dodgy building firm, so that's where the cowboys bit came from – so we got The Peckham Cowboys and that was the name of this recording malarkey way, way before it became a band. That recording venture eventually became 'Flog It!'."

While we both paused, I took the opportunity to reiterate how it was a natural result to what sounded like an effortless collaboration. A happy accident if you like, or as Dale put it – "We had no intention of forming a band you know whatsoever." Then he adds "Took on a monstrous life of its own."

The reception for their debut 2010 album 'Flog It!' was of critical acclaim, and a generally united gasp to the tone of how refreshing it sounded and how innovative it was in comparison to other albums at that time. Commercially 'Flog It!' was another story. So moving forward from what had been an underground success, the second studio album '10 Tales From The Gin Palace' moved the band forward once more.

Dale: "When we'd made 'Gin Palace', which was a very different experience to making 'Flog It!', I mean Marc really lived and breathed 'Gin Palace, in a lot of ways it was his record; from another perspective it was a band record as well because there was obviously a band this time around as opposed to three blokes putting something together. But it was a pretty intense process for Marc - nearly sent him around the twist 'cos he lived it and he breathed it 24/7 for the best part of a year."

peckham cowboys

Dale continued: "We knew what we'd got was really good and clearly we knew it was a progression and something different from 'Flog It!' which we were very proud of as well 'cos it was such a head-fuck, mad fuckin' out-there album, we knew 'Gin Palace' was really something special. What we didn't expect was the sort of universal unanimous love for it, everybody fuckin' loves it! I can't remember how many reviews we've had but there's been loads and loads and loads of them. I think we've had one shit review and even then they couldn't give us a proper kick in."

The tone wasn't one of arrogance or someone who was full of self-confidence; it was explained in tones of surprise and slight bewilderment.

Dale: "To be compared to the 'Stones at their best and for people to say straight-faced that this is a masterpiece and the best album by any new English band in decades, it's wonderful and it's heart-warming. Like I said, that aspect took us by surprise. When you're in the middle of something you don't know its happening. It's very nice and we're all very happy and somewhat humbled by it as well I have to say."

To read more detail about '10 Tales From The Gin Palace', check out the MetalTalk review which you can find here.

I brought up the constant line-up changes and Dale responded by bringing me up to date.

Dale: "We put together this new line-up. Marc largely did that, he knows more people in the business than I do. He'd known Nigel Mogg for a lot of years; I'd not met Nigel at that point but knew of him through Guy and The Quireboys connection. So we asked him and he leapt at the chance. Marc had found Ryan (McCormick), he's a lot younger than the rest of us but he's incredibly experienced and he's a superb drummer and he'd also cut his teeth, toured Europe and stuff like that with various other bands.

"Duncan (McKay) again was a mate of Marc; he's worked with absolutely everybody and Primal Scream is just one. His CV is a foot long with people he's worked with. As Marc jokes, he's the only man to be fired from Primal Scream for being too out of it! He's a genius horn player. He blows that trumpet and voodoo magic comes out of that."

For the briefest moment Dale pauses as he searches his mind for the remaining member of the band he hasn't made reference to.

Dale: "That left the issue of the guitar player. We knew at the time that Timo was working with various other bands, so we went to Timo (Kaitio) and said look man would you be interested? He leapt at the chance and unbeknown to us when 'Flog It!' came out, he said to his I think girlfriend – I wish I was in this band; which was beautiful to find out later on.

"Of course Tim Kaitio again a brilliant guitar player and the man that co-wrote 'Right Next Door To Hell' which opens Guns N'Roses' 'Use Your Isllusion'. He worked with Izzy Stradlin in his band and did loads of recording with him. Obviously grew up with Michael Monroe and those lads in Hanoi Rocks and was with them right from the inception."

Dale reveals at this point how he felt something had clicked with the six members. He also points out his appreciation and acknowledges Phil Fright who helped the band out last year as Nigel Mogg faced some logistical issues due to living across the Atlantic. Phil had quite a significant involvement during the recording of '10 Tales From The Gin Palace'. Noting his contributions, Dale refers to him as the seventh member of The Peckham Cowboys.

So there you have it; some background on a band that formed by accident and that have to their name some remarkable material. Do yourself a favour, and if you have the time and the funds, check out '10 Tales From The Gin Palace' because it's a slice of prime English Rock'n'Roll blended at times with other musical flavours. They're a band that isn't in it for the money, they're in it to create the best music they can and would be humbled if you joined the party.


18.4.14





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The yet to be titled album is starting to take shape and the band discuss all aspects in this new video...

decapitated DECAPITATED REVEAL ALBUM TITLE AND COVER ARTWORK
'Blood Mantra' will be released in September and features artwork by Lukasz Jaszak...

deep purple DEEP PURPLE RELEASE THE PREVIOUSLY UNAVAILABLE LIVE PERFORMANCE 'GRAZ 1975'
The historic find contains over 70 minutes of previously unreleased material...

blues pills BLUES PILLS VOCALIST ELIN LARSSON DISCUSSES THE TRACKS OFF THE BAND'S NEW SELF-TITLED ALBUM
The first album from the colourful retro-rockers is released on 28th July...

linkin park LINKIN PARK ANNOUNCE EUROPEAN TOUR FOR NOVEMBER 2014
Fresh from summer festival appearances and the release of 'The Hunting Party' Linkin Park play fifteen dates in Europe...

joe bonamassa JOE BONAMASSA ANNOUNCES 4 NIGHTS AT LONDON'S HAMMERSMITH APOLLO
The shows will feature songs from new album 'Different Shades Of Blue', played live for the very first time in the UK, and a never-before-seen line-up of musicians...

demonic resurrection ONSLAUGHT ANNOUNCE DEMONIC RESURRECTION WILL REPLACE HATRIOT ON UK 'THRASH INVASION' TOUR
India's Demonic Resurrection will join Nightlord and main support Artillery following acclaimed appearances at Les-Fest 3 and Sonisphere...

judas priest JUDAS PRIEST 'REDEEMER OF SOULS' ALBUM LAUNCH PARTIES ANNOUNCED
A chance to hear new tracks from the album ahead of its release on Monday July 14th, plus these exclusive parties will also feature exclusive merchandise giveaways...

acrassicauda ACRASSICAUDA LAUNCH KICKSTARTER CAMPAIGN FOR THEIR FIRST OFFICIAL ALBUM
The latest chapter for the Iraq Metal pioneers continues their astonishing story...

black sabbath TONY IOMMI CONFIRMS MetalTalk REPORT THAT HYDE PARK WAS NOT THE LAST EVER BLACK SABBATH GIG
Tony released a video just before Friday's gig thanking fans for their support and he ends it by saying: "See you on the next tour"...

godsmack MULTI-PLATINUM US ROCKERS GODSMACK ANNOUNCE NEW STUDIO ALBUM "1000HP"
The band move into the fast lane for sixth studio album, '1000hp', set for international release via Spinefarm Records on September 1st 2014...

karmaflow 'KARMAFLOW: THE ROCK OPERA VIDEOGAME' IS UNVEILED WITH AN ALL-STAR CAST
This multidisciplinary art project is a must for lovers of gaming and Metal...

hellyeah HELLYEAH TAKES BLOOD FOR BLOOD TO THE TOP OF THE HARD ROCK CHARTS IN NORTH AMERICA
The band will tour Europe in July and August 2014 with six dates in the UK...

steve hackett STEVE HACKETT ANNOUNCES DVD 'GENESIS REVISITED: LIVE AT THE ROYAL ALBERT HALL', WORLD TOUR PLUS EXCLUSIVE VIDEO INTERVIEW
Re-live a seminal chapter of prog rock history live on stage. "It's a feast for eyes, ears and all the senses..."

cannibal corpse CANNIBAL CORPSE TO RELEASE 'A SKELETAL DOMAIN'
The 13th full-length album from the American Death Metal icons is released in September. The extensive tour reaches the UK in October...

electric wizard ELECTRIC WIZARD UNVEIL 'TIME TO DIE' AS TITLE OF FORTHCOMING STUDIO ALBUM
"We had to kill the band so we could be reborn. It was the only way to ensure we could come back even stronger"...

motorhead aftershock MOTÖRHEAD POSTPONE RELEASE OF 'AFTERSHOCK - TOUR EDITION' NOW 4th AUGUST
A production error has put back the release for a month, but it will be worth waiting for...

suicide silence tour SUICIDE SILENCE ANNOUNCE NOVEMBER 2014 UK TOUR
An unmissable opportunity to see the titans of modern Metal. "Come throw your horns up, bang your heads, or mosh your knickers off!! "...

hordes of belial LIPID AND BURNING THE DREAM ADDED TO HORDES OF BELIAL V BILL
The yearly Dundee Metal event continues to strengthen the line up...

snakecharmer SNAKECHARMER ANNOUNCE THREE UK DATES
Six of the UK's most highly-esteemed and experienced rock musicians have joined forces to create Snakecharmer...

manowar MANOWAR ANNOUNCE NEW U.S. TOUR DATES FOR NOVEMBER 2014
Manowarriors have demanded more and further dates have been added. "We can't wait to be back and play for more of our U.S. fans!"...

tygertailz TIGERTAILZ RELEASE NEW VIDEO FOR 'PUNCHED IN THE GUTZ'
The 'Knives' EP is out now and there is an upcoming release of unheard demos for September...

progstravaganza PROG SPHERE INVITES BANDS TO SEND SUBMISSIONS FOR 20TH EDITION OF PROGSTRAVAGANZA COMPILATION SERIES
The call goes out for bands around the world to submit songs for the jubilee edition of the sampler album ...

accept ACCEPT PREMIERE BREATHTAKING VIDEO FOR NEW TRACK 'STAMPEDE'
The stunning locations perfectly showcase the track which is from the band's album 'Blind Rage' out August 18th ..

mr big MR BIG ANNOUNCE ONLY BRITISH ISLES SHOW OF 2014
LA Rockers Mr Big have announced a one off show at London's Koko on Friday 17th October 2014 - their only show on these shores this year...

spike frankie miller SPIKE ANNOUNCES RELEASE OF '100% PURE FRANKIE MILLER' FEATURING RONNIE WOOD, ANDY FRASER, SIMON KIRKE, IAN HUNTER AND MORE
Call it a labour of love. A life's ambition. Or the chance to keep a precious legacy alive. Call it 100% Pure Frankie Miller....

kobra and the lotus KOBRA AND THE LOTUS RELEASE OFFICIAL VIDEO FOR BRAND NEW SINGLE 'SOLDIER'
Explosive hard rockers Kobra And The Lotus have revealed a warsome (get it?!) official video for 'Soldier'...

massive wagons MASSIVE WAGONS ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM AND UK TOUR
Two years and it's finally here, the brand new album - 'Fight The System'...

temperance movement THE TEMPERANCE MOVEMENT ANNOUNCE EUROPEAN TOUR DATES
The headlining dates will take place in November 2014...

overkill OVERKILL REVEAL NEW TRACK 'ARMORIST' ONLINE
"Our confidence is high for this shoot. From the director's eye to yours/ours, should be a killer!"...

avenged sevenfold AVENGED SEVENFOLD ANNOUNCE 'WAKING THE FALLEN: RESURRECTED' - OUT AUGUST 25TH
The restored breakthrough album includes a DVD & never before heard tracks, demos, and more...

dragonforce DRAGONFORCE ANNOUNCE LONDON SHOW WITH EPICA
Grab your tickets quickly as demand for this double bill will be high...

devildriver DEVILDRIVER PREMIERE LYRIC VIDEO FOR 'GUTTED'
Check out the band's latest offering from sixth studio album 'Winter Kills'...

down n outz DOWN 'N' OUTZ ANNOUNCE UK & EIRE TOUR DATES
"It's like Joe and the boys have taken some vintage films and slapped them onto a big, bright Technicolor screen. A great, in-your-face new way to experience some of Mott's finest songs!"...

nuclear assault NUCLEAR ASSAULT TO RELEASE 'LIVE AT CBGB'S'
There will be a limited release of 500 picture discs capturing the old school thrashers back in 1986...

seether SEETHER REVEAL NEW TRACK, 'SUFFER IT ALL' AVAILABLE FOR IMMEDIATE DOWNLOAD WITH 'ISOLATE AND MEDICATE' PRE-ORDER
The band have also announced UK Headline Shows for November...

gravedigger GRAVE DIGGER PREMIERE 'HELL FUNERAL' VIDEO
The track is from 'Return Of The Reaper', out July 14th...

voodoo six VOODOO SIX SET TO GUEST WITH THE WINERY DOGS ON TWO UK DATES IN JULY
These performances follow their Sonisphere appearance on Saturday July 5th...

orphaned land METAL MUSIC IS BIGGER THAN WHAT POLITICS CAN OFFER: ORPHANED LAND BRING ISRAEL AND PALESTINE TOGETHER
"We are the ambassadors of peace, more than our foreign ministry, or prime minister, or authors..."

madball MADBALL REVEAL OFFICIAL VIDEO FOR 'BORN STRONG' FEATURING CANDACE PUOPOLO FROM WALLS OF JERICHO
The track is taken from the album 'Hardcore Lives', released June 30th...

metallica METALLICA RELEASE NEW SONG
'Lords of Summer - First Pass Version' gets official release after being premiered on the first night of the current tour...

ted nugent kamp "TED NUGENT KAMP FOR KIDS" CELEBRATES 25TH ANNUAL SUMMER "KAMP"
When he's not being a guitar icon, Ted Nugent is on a mission to improve young lives. New album 'Shutup&Jam!' is out July 8...

massive wagons MASSIVE WAGONS RELEASE SINGLE AND NEW VIDEO 'RED DRESS'
The video incudes circus performances from the girls at Monster Cirque in the first release from the album 'Fight The System'...

black state highway THE DEBUT ALBUM FROM BLACK STATE HIGHWAY IS OUT ON 18TH AUGUST
The highly anticipated release is packed full of heavy riff-based rock...

helmet HELMET ANNOUNCE 'BETTY' 20TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR OF EUROPE FOR AUTUMN 2014
UK dates in Glasgow, Manchester, London now added due to popular demand ...

wacken LIVE AT WACKEN 2013 TO BE RELEASED AS DVD/ BluRay / 2 CD
Experience the world's biggest Metal Festival at home and be in with a chance to win a Lifetime Membership...

uncle rust UNCLE RUST ANNOUNCE AUGUST UK TOUR
The recently formed London based rock/Metal band will undertake a set of UK dates in August 2014...

blitzkreig BLITZKRIEG ANNOUNCE EUROPEAN TOUR FOR SEPTEMBER 2014
The band will visit five countries on their only tour this year...

sonisphere LATE NIGHT ENTERTAINMENT AT SONISPHERE ANNOUNCED
Only two weeks away - get ready to continue the party after the headliners leave the stage...

finntroll FINNTROLL REVEAL LIVE FOOTAGE OF SEMINAL TRACK 'TROLLHAMMAREN', FILMED AT THEIR LIVE ALBUM RECORDING SHOW IN AMSTERDAM
"Lock up your daughters, kegs of rum and men of God, for The Trolls from Up North are coming for you...live!..."

dragonforce DRAGONFORCE REVEAL NEW VIDEO 'THE GAME' (FEAT. MATT HEAFY OF TRIVIUM)
The track is taken from the album 'Maximum Overload', which will be released in August...

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