Essential Advent Calendar: The Kondoors – ‘Mr Rain’

The Kondoors are singer songwriters Jessica Greenfield and Gavin Conder who when their voices come together produce an absolute powerhouse of harmonies and glorious melodies.

The Kondoors released their track, ‘Mr Rain’, back in October. The track is written based on a rough patch the husband and wife duo experienced:

“We wrote Mr Rain together a few years ago after going through a tough time in our relationship. After having therapy for a while we realised we still had something special, that there was a lot of good in what we had. The song is basically about saying goodbye to the bleak, dark times and hello to the postive happy times. It’s a song about achievement really. Despite everything, that we stuck by each other.”

The resounding beat and choral backing vocals are the perfect setting for the nearly gospel-style melody and soaring harmonies of Jessica and Gavin. ‘Mr Rain’ came out on October 6, through Ferocious Label Services.

We took the opportunity to speak to The Kondoors about their music.

EP: What’s The Kondoors’ story – who are you, how did you meet, where does the name come from, what style of music do you make?

TK: We are husband and wife duo Jess Greenfield and Gavin Conder.  We met 14 years ago through a mutual musician friend of ours. We had a very instant connection and we had so much in common so it felt right to get together. We started singing together back then but decided to work on original stuff about 3 years ago.

The name comes from Gav’s surname Conder. When we got engaged we decided to use it as it felt more like we were a team doing it together. We changed the spelling as it stood out more.  We make classic rock and soul music with a modern edge.
EP: You released your single, ‘Mr Rain’ back in October – what’s that about?
TK: We wrote Mr Rain after going through some really difficult times in our relationship. It’s about riding a storm and watching the sun come out at the end, even if it takes a while!  It’s a really uplifting happy song and reminds us of what we have come though.
EP: Have you released anything more we should look out for?
TK: We have just finished recording our debut album. We did it at Monnow Valley studios in Wales with producer and mixer Paul “Strangeboy” Stacey with a 9 piece band in 3 days. It’s recorded live and it sounds epic. So excited for people to hear it.
EP: If you could do it all over again, what, if anything, would you do differently, and why? Following on from that, what advice would you give to anyone starting out in music, and what’s your thoughts about the current state of the music industry?

TK: Gav: I wouldn’t change anything cos it’s made us who we are today and put us in a great position and we’re working with some amazing people.- Jess has recently been working with Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds which I am really proud of her for.

Jess: But…if we had to change something, I would say we wasted a lot of time listening to other people’s opinions on our development, when all along we should have trusted our own ability, knowledge and judgement. We are now in best place we have ever been.
In terms of advice for people starting out, it’s very important to really follow your heart and be true to yourself. Write the music you love and don’t be swayed by others too much. There will always be an audience for your music. The key is to keep going, as there is an fan base for everyone. Today‘s music industry together with social media allows the artists to directly interact with their fans so you can really gain control over what you do.  In this respect it is much easier for independent artists now.  The downside of the industry today is you need to be almost more than a musician. You need to have an understanding about the other elements involved such as marketing, advertising, management etc. Don’t sit at home and expect record labels to just sign you up. It’s a very unpredictable business and there are lots of trend based artists out there not really doing anything different. The beauty of the Internet is that you can find some great stuff out there too. Having drive is the key and make friends in all areas of the industry.
EP: As this is part of our Essential Advent Calendar – what is your favourite seasonal tune and why?
TK: ‘Fairytale of New York’. It’s a beautiful song. It’s so raw and heartfelt. It kind of reminds us of the ups and down of our relationship without the booze and violence obviously haha. Whenever it comes on the radio it feels immediately Christmassy.
EP: And finally – what question do you wish someone would ask you in an interview, but nobody ever does?
TK: That’s a hard question! No one has asked us if we could have been an artist from the past who would it be and why?

About the author

There’s a lot of music out there - good music. At Essentially Pop our remit is that we cover music that deserves to be heard, with a particular focus on independent artists. That doesn't mean we won't cover your old favourites - rather we hope to give you some new favourites as well.

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