Original Rudeboys Q&A,
North inner-city Dubliners Original Rudeboys only formed in March, but their acoustic hip-hop attracted a huge online following and they’ve been added to the Oxegen bill. Sean Arkins tells Brian Boyd about life in the fast lane
There’s three of us, we’re from the Five Lamps area of north inner-city Dublin and we’ve an average age of 21. We began by just uploading a video on to YouTube – the song Stars in My Eyes – and we just got thousands upon thousands of hits. How people have found us is beyond me, but the response on YouTube and Facebook has been incredible. We’d go back every day thinking that would be it in terms of interest, but we’d find that the 10,000 hits had become 20,000. We only put up the songs for our mates to hear, so the idea of getting all this attention from so many people is really strange. the tiny Irish hip-hop world for years, and my big inspirations would be Tupac Shakur and Notorious B.I.G. And I really look up to and admire Mike Skinner. It’s the poetry that gets me – I can relate to him more than any other artist. The Dubliners and Damian Dempsey get mentioned sometimes as well, which is fine by us because we’re huge fans of both. We’ve no idea. We did the analytics on our Facebook and YouTube pages, where you can see where all the hits are coming from, and it’s not just Ireland: we’re getting played in the UK, Australia and the US. We’ve got a lot more new tracks ready to go now but the three of us wouldn’t know the first thing about independently releasing an album, so we’ll just have to wait and see. All of our songs are written from just sitting around and jamming. Robert [Burch, guitarist] and Sean [ Walsh, ukulele] and myself just get them that way. With Stars in My Eyes, Robert had the melody line and I suppose the lyrics are just about the celebrity world and all those dreamers out there. You can’t get too specific about what songs mean. We’ve got management now, so that helps. The immediate plan is to keep on playing live. We also want to record all the new material we have, which is lots.