Spreading some sunny 70s folk

Daily Record - - THE TICKET - RICK FUL­TON

LAST year, a hus­band-and-wife duo drove their car through all 50 states of Amer­ica while on tour, get­ting fans to sign it along the way. The 2002 Volvo did 305,000 miles and was cov­ered bumper to bumper, in­side and out, with sig­na­tures. This year, Nathaniel Paul Hoff and Jil­lian Speece, who make up band The Berg­amot, put the Unity Car, as it’s known, up for auc­tion. It raised $30,000 for the mu­sic ther­apy de­part­ment of Bea­con Chil­dren’s Hos­pi­tal in their home­town of South Bend, In­di­ana. Jil­lian said: “We wanna make peo­ple feel like they be­long. We wanna bring them to­gether. And we’re like, unity … we wanna be uni­fiers in a world of di­vi­sion and dis­trac­tion.

“We wanna go out there and do some­thing.”

The cou­ple see them­selves in the mould of Amer­i­can folk singer and ac­tivist Pete Seeger.

They are hop­ing to shine their up­beat pos­i­tiv­ity on Bri­tain next year and will re­lease their de­but UK sin­gle, PDR, next Fri­day.

Now based in New York, Nathaniel and Jil­lian met in high school and formed a band while at­tend­ing In­di­ana Uni­ver­sity.

They’ve re­leased four al­bums in Amer­ica on their own record la­bel and even con­trol their tours.

In a world of selfie-ob­sessed celebs like Kim Kar­dashian, The Berg­amots are a breath of fresh air, as is their sunny 70s folk, which brims with pos­i­tiv­ity.

They are the an­tithe­sis of much of what’s in the charts nowa­days and a sooth­ing balm for mu­sic fans bored with the same-sound­ing elec­tronic R&B mu­sic that’s clog­ging up air­waves.

Jil­lian said: “We’re in a re­ally in­ter­est­ing place right now, cul­tur­ally and in the world, where in gen­eral it’s get­ting to be very self­ish.

“You know, you have the py­jama celebri­ties on Face­book and In­sta­gram and Twit­ter and, ‘Oh, look at me, selfie selfie selfie, and snap, oh it’s all about me me me me me me me me’, and I think one of the big things was, we were like, ‘OK, we’re fed up with this.’”


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