Posted on June 9, 2009 - by Mark Zonda
Music from Glaswegian “The Primary 5″ is pure joy for heart and soul. Sure it couldn’t be elsewere, since the pop tradition coming from Bellshill and the band background itself leads our path stright to Teenage Fanclub, Soup Dragons and BMX Bandits. Paul Quinn is looking for the Weast Coast across the soild ground of a retro brit-pop tradition, diggin out new hidden treasures from the brighest realms of rock music. Let’s have a little chat with Paul.
Mark Zonda: How did “The Primary 5″ got born? Was it a gist of the finest indie-pop available on Albion those days, and what’s the name referred to?
Paul: The band was created as a songwriting vehicle for my songs. hooked up with a local musician, Ryan Currie, and recorded 10 songs in a very lo-fi way. These 10 songs became my first album North Pole, which i released on my own label Bellbeat. The name came about as the project was in it’s Primary stage (early stage) and it was the 5th band i had been involved in, hey presto! The Primary 5.
Mark Zonda: Did being in Bellshill gave you a different perspective on the writing process of your songs?
Paul: Bellshill is a town 14 miles east of Glasgow with a population of around 40,000 people,
I was born and brought up in Bellshill but my dream was to get out of it as fast as i could, it’s a bit of a depressed area, but has a very rich musical background, lots of bands came from Bellshill, The Soup Dragons, Teenage Fanclub, BMX Bandits, Superstar, Eugenius to name a few. I suppose coming from & still staying in Bellshill gave me a solid working class background that was a good thing and put alot of things into perspective for me as i was travelling the world touring, it also gave me the perspective that alot of the music industry is completely false and shallow, so i suppose it did influence me as a songwriter.
Mark Zonda: We can say that Bellshill is the country of C86 movement! What do you think of this retro-pop revival movement?
Paul: Paul – Bellshill is indeed C86 country, and yeah, i know, it’s very surprising that all these bands came from here. I played drums with both The Soup Dragons & Teenage Fanclub! I think the C86 revival is really cool. It puts my good friend Duglas T. Stewart from BMX Bandits in an almost godlike position, which is fantastic. I think most of these bands are coming from NYC, which has it’s own cool too.
Mark Zonda: Was your music ever influenced by Northern Soul?
Paul: I wouldn’t say that Northern Soul influenced any of my songs as such but definitely as a drummer it did. I was influenced more by Motown & the Funk Brothers, Stax and 60′s pop music, that, musically is where my heart lies, but i do love alot of Northern Soul, i’m not a collector or anorak on it but i really respect alot of those records.
Mark Zonda: Would “I wonder why” or “Same Old Story” would be suitable on an “America” album? Ever heard anything of that band, and what do you think about George Martin as a producer?
Paul: I have heard of America, but i couldn’t really say if the 2 songs you mentioned would have made it on to there records, i certainly didn’t write the songs with America in mind nor where/are they an influence on my songs. I don’t really try to write with anyone in mind. I come up with a melody, arrange the chords around the melody and off i go, i don’t really work too hard on songs and so far they’ve always came pretty quickly. I love George Martin, he was the fifth Beatle and an amazing producer. I don’t think The Beatles would have been as good had they not met him. I actually did meet him when Teenage Fanclub where mixing songs from Northern Britain at his studios Air in London. He is a real gentleman and even made me a cup of tea! a really lovely, humble man which a few so called “stars” could take a lesson from.
Mark Zonda: Best band of the World? Beatles or Teenage Fanclub?
Paul: I would definitely have to go with The Beatles, there catalogue of work is just incredible with Rubber Soul being my favourite album. Teenage Fanclub have had there moments though, i think Grand Prix and Songs from Northern Britain are brilliant records, not because i was involved with them, but for pure quality of songs over an album, i think, that they are head and shoulders above anything that they did before or after these two records.
Mark Zonda: Any chance to see you in Italy?
Paul: I would love to play in italy but i’m afraid a very kind promoter will have to invite us, but you never know. If people like you ask some promoters then maybe it could happen, but at the moment there are no plans to play in Italy. Keep in touch and best wishes.