The 50thirdand3rd Interview With – The Duke Spirit


Today , we are pleased to bring you our Interview with The Duke Spirit. When we started this site a few years back , I never imagined that we would get the opportunity to actually Interview bands that we enjoyed listening to but I’m glad that wasn’t the case. I’ve listened to The Duke Spirit for quite a few years and they are still putting out some beautiful records. Give a listen to “Kin” and read this Interview and I can pretty much guarantee that you will be a fan in the time that takes.

The 50thirdand3rd Interview With – The Duke Spirit

1. Your new Album “Kin’ is out now, can you tell us a little something about the theme of the album.?

Well Theme suggests its a bit prescribed. I only ever write words in a loose, intuitive way, so am not convinced I’m clever enough to put together a theme. However, in the words you have thoughts and feelings that interweave and circle around the magnificence of love; for people, for nature. In appreciating such magnificence, can come attachment, and with attachment comes pain, because all things will pass and change. When they do, in rolls a tide of grief. Watching these emotions with detachment, as a kind of witness, is one way of getting navigating the intensity.

2. Is writing a cathartic experience for you as a band. Does it help you dealing with loss?

I have found no particular help or catharsis, no. It documents a time and brings about great appreciation for the good things in life, is all.

3. There are a lot of poetic images in your lyrics, are there any poets that you find yourself reading more than others?

I love the conciseness of Haiku poems and read collections of those quite a bit. Basho from the Japanese tradition and Ryokan (Chinese? Not sure…). I do love Thomas Stearns Eliot, who doesn’t.

4. You have a view friends showing up on ‘Kin’ to lend a hand, can you tell us a little about working with other musicians in the making of ‘Kin’?

I had worked with the wonderful Mara Carlyle at Lavelle’s Meltdown. She has the most divine voice and plays lots of instruments including the saw! Luke in the band was obsessed with getting the saw on the album and I loved Mara, so we dragged her down! Sam from The Archie Bronson Outfit has been a friend for over a decade and we love his delivery, the way he sings. He is also an exceptional abstract painter, represented by my favourite London Gallery – The Approach. We needed his talented vibes to make us seem cooler. Haha. Olly had worked previously with the Deep Throat choir and I wanted to involve them based on their name alone! Lanegan we had toured with years ago, admired constantly, and I sung with him at the Southbank. Couldn’t resist asking him for a vocal contribution, but wasn’t sure he would agree! But he did!

5. You have had an incredible journey as a band, can you tell us some of the highs and some of the lows?

The lows are always scrambling for budget and waiting around to get it together to make stuff happen. The highs are kooky TV appearances with plastic Americans like David Letterman. So hilarious the whole ‘show biz’ facade, you could laugh all day. And Glastonbury Park stage. I loved that show a few years ago.

6. What’s the biggest differences in the music industry now compared to when you were starting out?

People always banged on about the print press back then, now there’s barely any of it left!

7. Can you tell us about your upcoming tour?

In October we’ll be all over the country and over to Europe. Whoop! Do you have opening acts lined up? We have a duo, Riothorse Royale who are great. Check them out, a two-woman rock and roll band.

8. Any plans to visit America/Canada in the near future?

Working it out right now.

9. Any last words or thoughts for all The Duke Spirit fans out there?

Our newest album Kin is the best record we have made 🙂

The Duke Spirit:


Tour Dates:
10th Oct Patterns – Brighton
12th Oct – The Rainbow – Birmingham
13th Oct – Brudenell Social Club – Leeds
14th Oct – King Tuts – Glasgow
15th Oct – Think Tank – Newcastle
17th Oct – Gorilla – Manchester
18th Oct – The Bodega – Nottingham
19th Oct – The Fleece – Bristol
20th Oct – The Scala – London
23rd Oct – Hafenklang – Hamburg
24th Oct – Bi Nuu – Berlin
25th Oct – Kranhalle – Munich
27th Oct – Zakk – Düsseldorf
31st Oct – Point Ephemere – Paris

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Co-founder of 50thirdand3rd, stepped away to spend time with family and write. From Pittsburgh, now in Florida, Cool Canadian artist wife, 4 great kids, and two granddaughters!! I'm a lucky guy!

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