Meet Turntable: The Band with an Extra ‘Twist’

BY JASON LI
Hailing from Bury Saint Edmunds, Turntable are more than just your average covers band. This 8-piece band are specialists in funk and soul music. They mix pop and classic tunes with a funky flair, guaranteeing a wild night on any dance floor. We asked them to explain how adding the ‘Turntable Twist’ has created the band’s unique identity and made them so well-received amongst their audiences.
How did you guys become a band?

A few years ago, bass player Nick Reynolds and trumpeter Robert Davies decided they wanted to form a function band in Suffolk to entertain people at weddings and other events. They approached various musicians they knew and the band got going from there. The last member to join was our lead guitarist and co-lead singer Joe Taylor, who engineers and produces most of our music. At the band’s first ever rehearsal, Joe Taylor and company got stuck at the revolving doors as they were exiting from their studio. From then on, the band started brainstorming names, and ‘Turntable’ emerged…

What about the band do you think sets you apart from other function and cover bands out there?

To begin with, our four-piece horn section. You do not see that very often, right?

On top of that, we write and arrange the music ourselves in a way that they would not sound identical to the originals. We call this adding the ‘Turntable Twist’ — this makes us who we are. For instance, our rendition of ‘Brown Eyed Girl’ is a ska piece consisting of an epic bass break-down section.

Can you describe the one gig or show you did that is the most unforgettable?

One of our most memorable gigs ever has to be the wedding of the Cole couple. It was held at a barn in the middle of a campsite, and the atmosphere was so spirited and buoyant that we almost thought we were at a music festival. The highlight of the night was definitely the couple’s first dance. The Coles and the guests danced to ‘Under the Sea’ from ‘The Little Mermaid’ (1989), which we ended up performing three more times! The Coles loved our performances so much that we had been hired again to peform at their 4th wedding anniversary and their son’s 2nd birthday.

What type of event does the band like to play at the most? Why?

Weddings never cease to delight us, but we also performed at a fantastic 70th birthday party, 1st birthday party, and various festivals that got everyone dancing all night long. We even had this random gig where the entire crowd formed a conga line and danced to ‘Brown Eyed Girl’ and ‘You Can Call Me Al’. In the end, as hackneyed as this may sound, it is the audience that defines the success of an event.

Tell us a typical performance of Turntable. What can guests and clients expect from you guys?

Expect a quality band, a set list that appeals to everyone aged 1 to 101, and a polished yet exuberant performance that guarantees guests tearing it up on the dance floor beginning to end. We often get reviews from clients that the band seem to enjoy themselves greatly, so also expect us to give it our all in each performance!

Can you share a proud music achievement or accomplishment of Turntable?

In 2016, our lead singer Michelle Parry organised a large-scale concert at the Apex Concert Hall, Bury Saint Edmunds. The event featured a 90-member male voice choir, a vintage trio and an all-female stage ensemble. Turntable headlined the event to raise money for Help Musicians UK, a charity founded in 2014 that helps professional musicians of all genres. In the end, we managed to raise £3000. That was definitely a very proud achievement of the band.

Why did you choose funk as the primary genre or music you perform?

Let’s face it. Everyone needs some ‘funk’ in their lives. Who can resist a funky bass line, some catchy horn improvisations, and a spirited band playing those all-time classics that we all have a soft spot for?

Based on your experience, what are some of the most enjoyable aspects about performing and travelling as a band?

Definitely the music, the camaraderie between the bandmates, and also the incredible venues and places we had the privilege to play at. But the most gratifying feeling is hearing clients coming over from and time after our gigs and say that our music made them happy. After all, giving the audience a special and pleasant few hours is what we strive for as a band.

Have you ever faced any setback or difficulties? how Have you overcome them?

Naturally, you would face varying and unexpected problems here and there. Be it equipment issues, fires at venues, screeching security alarms, or overly enthusiastic crowds… we have experienced them all. We handle each incident as it comes professionally and calmly and do what we can to finish the gig or event.

what is the signature ‘Turntable’ song?

It is really hard to single one out, as we throw in the ‘Turntable Twist’ to each of our songs. Our electrifying rendition of ‘Runaway Baby’ by Bruno Mars is one of our favourites, then there is ‘Seven Nation Army’ and the dance routines that accompanies it, and also ‘Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours’ with the magnificent horn melodies, and not to mention our mega mash-up of tunes from the 70s…

You can hire Turntable through Headliner Entertainment. We help you discover and book live entertainment specifically catered to your event.

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