Band plays UK gigs

Matamata Chronicle - - Front Page - By KA­T­RINA LINTONBON

From strum­ming gui­tars at Mata­mata Pri­mary School to crack­ing the mu­sic scene in Lon­don, Mark and Steve Hitch­cock and An­drew Coogan have never for­got­ten their Mata­mata roots.

The trio, moved from Mata­mata to Lon­don to ex­pe­ri­ence liv­ing and work­ing over­seas.

Join­ing with key­board and sax­o­phone player Romy Bylin, the Mata­mata lads have formed the band Melic.

Mark Hitch­cock said they ar­rived in Lon­don on sep­a­rate agen­das and no doubt with very dif­fer­ent plans in mind.

Com­ing up with a name for their band was some­thing they did col­lec­tively.

‘‘We were af­ter some­thing short and mem­o­rable. An­drew ac­tu­ally found the word, Melic – it’s an old Greek word that means ‘ in­tended to be sung’,’’ Mark said.

‘‘It seemed ap­pro­pri­ate enough and ev­ery­one seemed happy with that for a name and so Melic was formed in early 2009.’’

Mark and Steve have been play­ing mu­sic to­gether their whole lives, from hum­ble be­gin­nings at the Mata­mata Cor­ner Pub to var­i­ous bars and restau­rants around the Waikato and Bay Of Plenty.

They then had dif­fer­ent band projects at their re­spec­tive uni­ver­si­ties in Auck­land and Welling­ton.

Mark said it was al­ways the plan to meet up in Lon­don and start a band. ‘‘We had no idea that it would in­volve our long time school friend, An­drew Coogan,’’ he said.

‘‘Steve and I got to­gether for an ini­tial jam ses­sion on the gui­tars in Steve’s gar­den back in Oc­to­ber 2008. That ini­tial jam ses­sion ac­tu­ally pro­duced key parts to many fu­ture Melic songs.

‘‘An­drew (drums) then joined for a jam ses­sion in Novem­ber and then Romy (sax and keys) a few weeks later.’’

Since form­ing Melic, there have been many high­lights in­clud­ing play­ing at some big fes­ti­vals in 2011.

‘‘ We played at Corn­bury Fes­ti­val ( Head­lin­ing acts were: Sta­tus Quo, The Faces, James Blunt and The Straits) which was a fan­tas­tic ex­pe­ri­ence. Melic even got men­tioned in the of­fi­cial re­view of the fes­ti­val in The In­de­pen­dent news­pa­per,’’ Mark said.

‘‘A few months ear­lier we played in Lon­don at South­ern Sounds Fes­ti­val, with the likes of INXS, Shi­had and I am Gi­ant – that was a goody.’’

Steve and Mark both started play­ing gui­tar at Mata­mata Pri­mary. They went on to Mata­mata In­ter­me­di­ate where they picked up brass in­stru­ments and then Mata­mata Col­lege, where they played in var­i­ous con­cert and rock bands.

‘‘We were part of the Mata­mata Ci­ti­zen’s Brass band for many years too,’’ Mark said.

An­drew was also at Mata­mata Pri­mary where he played lead glock­en­spiel.

It wasn’t un­til later on at univer­sity that he picked up drum­ming.

‘‘Like many kids that grow up in Mata­mata, we were taught mu­sic by Clare Hitch­cock. It just so hap­pened that she was our mum. She was also re­spon­si­ble for An­drew’s glock­en­spiel ca­reer.’’

De­scribed as a bit of a ran­dom mix of mu­sos – Melic’s genre has been re­ferred to be­fore as ‘‘some sort of unique pro­gres­sive acous­tic funkrock’’.

Melic’s song Nowhere I’d Rather Be is now play­ing on The Rock ra­dio sta­tion.

Check it out: http:/ / www. the­rock. net. nz/ Melic-Nowhere-id-rather-be/tabid/ 401/ ar­ti­cleid/ 17713/ De­fault. aspx

Mak­ing mu­sic: Mata­mata lads Mark and Steve Hitch­cock, An­drew Coogan and Romy Bylin are the band Melic.

Jam­ming: Melic play­ing live at The Grand.

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