The Undercover Hippy
Wednesday 24 April 2024, 7:30pm - 11pm
The Waterfront Studio
tickets subject to 10% booking fee
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14+ (under 16’s to be accompanied by an adult over 18)
Drum & Bass MC turned singer-songwriter Billy Rowan, aka The Undercover Hippy, is on a mission to make people think, laugh, and dance simultaneously. Described by Tom Robinson (BBC6Music) as being “like the love-child of Steel Pulse, Kate Tempest and The Sleaford Mods”, his music brings together powerful messages, infectious reggae rhythms, and masterful lyrical dexterity. Combining intelligent, provocative lyrics with dangerously catchy hooks and a feel good groove, this is music for the thinking person to shake their arse to. Think Natty meets Eminem…on a protest march…at the Edinburgh Fringe.
Renowned for the electric atmosphere of their live shows, The Undercover Hippy has become a staple of some of the UK’s best festivals, including Glastonbury, Boomtown Fair, Shambala, Green Man and The Secret Garden Party, as well as many European festivals. As the music clocks up over 12 million streams on Spotify, the band have been clocking up motorway miles, touring relentlessly, with over 80 shows and festival appearances across the UK and Europe each year. Having played two UK tours in 2021, the band will be back on the road in the spring of 2023 to promote the release of their long awaited 3rd album “Not Paying Attention”.
Their last album, Truth & Fiction, was released with much fanfare in 2017.
Tracks from the album received airplay on David Rodigan’s show on BBC 1Xtra, and Tom Robinson played tracks on both the BBC Introducing Mixtape and the Tom Robinson Show on 6Music. Anticipation for the follow up album has been building ever since, and fans finally have a release date set for April 2023. One of Billy’s biggest strengths is the way he manages to pack his songs full of political and social commentary, whilst at the same time remaining playful and uplifting, and in this respect the new album stays true to form. Covering topics from Brexit, covid conspiracies and the rise of populist politics, to new age sex pests and the dangers of raving in your 40’s, this album once again takes you on a rollercoaster of storytelling and thought provoking protest pieces.
The first single “Fool Britannia”, a polemic on the divisiveness of Brexit and populist politics, was released in April 2020 to coincide with the UK tour… but Covid had other plans. The second single, “These Days”, came out in May 2022, with an all singing and dancing music video produced and directed by Yellow Boot Media in Manchester. Originally written as a call to arms to all those who’ve given up on going out partying due to getting older, it found an unexpected new meaning when lockdowns confined us all to our houses, with the chorus “You all know what I mean when I say, I don’t get out a lot, I don’t get out a lot these days” being true of pretty much everyone around the world. The next single, “Not Paying Attention” is set for release in January 2023.
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