INTERVIEW: BELDON HAIGH
Updated: Jul 3
Beldon Haigh seems to typify the spirit of a nation through his music. A man who channels his energy for bigger causes has once again created an infectious anthem fighting against the BBC local radio cuts that are set to happen across the UK. 'Need My Local Radio' is an uplifting yet cutthroat protest song about how this needs to stop, as so many artists and people benefit from having their local BBC station providing them with opportunities and brilliant music to boot,
We sat down with Beldon to learn more about his cause and what he has his sights set on for 2023, exclusively for FLEX!
Hey Beldon Haigh, welcome to FLEX! What inspires you to create music?
It's impossible to say because it is whatever takes my interest. Generally though I am very inspired by things that seem unjust and unfair. Like towns being left to got to rack and ruin, or the Government totally messing up, which gives a ready supply of interesting things to write about,, or the fact the increasing interest rates piles a disproportionate pressure on quite a small group of people , or lately the cuts to BBC local radio services which will really affect blind and other digitally disadvantaged people.
Tell us about when you decided to write 'Need My Local Radio'?
Because I was saddened at the BBC's disappointing treatment in dealing with much loved presenters, who are part of the fabric of their local communities and were asked to re-apply for their own jobs, which many will ultimately lose, unless the BBC reverse this decision and I hate to see local voices be muffled and even more power and creative output transferred or migrated to London.
Tell our readers a little summary of what this song is about please!
It's a little bit of a love song for local radio, how it delivers companionship and humanity to local communities, can be a caring sound of a local voice for a local community sharing all the stories and talking about local people and local issues. Local Radio might be considered old fashioned to some people, but Local Radio helps communities to spread heart warming stories that help uphold community values, which goes right to the heart of our happiness as humans. In a very digital world, Local Radio delivers a very human voice.
Watch the video for 'Need My Local Radio' here:
What was the recording and writing process like for it?
I wrote the song with an acoustic guitar, played it into my iPhone, then recorded it with a click track before sending it round other musicians for input. Alfie Cattell and Jimmy Green assisted with some nice production ideas and we ended up with the first version of the song. We then took that, put it in front of the Beldon Haigh live band and recorded it again, this time videoing that live recording. Through this we ended up with two versions. One is available to download and stream, the other is only available on YouTube.
Who are your musical influences?
Elvis Costello, Bob Dylan, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Lou Reed, Tom Petty, Steely Dan, The Beatles , The Stones and many many more
You have quite a following across social media, was this always the plan or has it been a happy accident?
Happy accident meets a love of controversy and ability to make provocative and sometimes humorous videos.
This is a very important protest song. What else can we do to spread the word about this?
Download it and help it to chart!
What else can we expect from Beldon Haigh in 2023?
An album release in September and a few gigs to support this.