Interview: Introducing The Great Leslie & New Single ‘Out Of My Hands’

The Great Leslie are a London based alternative rock band that you need to be checking out. Fronted by vocalist and songwriter Ollie Trevors, the group have a highly vibrant sound about them. The music ranges from an optimistic high energy pop sound that will make you feel alive, to a more edgy rock and roll sound. Inspired by the likes of David BowieQueenElla FitzgeraldKings of Leon, and The Killers, you can guarantee something that will spark your interest and pull you in. With raw vocals and a punchy approach, The Great Leslie are full of life to make you want to get up and dance. 

Their new single, Out of My hands, brings a bright and energetic that will fill a room with positivity and energy that’s fully welcome now. Listening to this track will have you hungry for a summer road trip with friends and looking forward to brighter days ahead. Talking about the track, Ollie said: 

“Out Of My Hands is almost like a confessional. It’s about being truthful with yourself about who you are and about what your faults are and about accepting those things about you, because whatever they might be it’s not the end of the world. Love yourself, don’t beat yourself up.”

2021 is set to be a BIG year for the band. With live music finally on the horizon again, it’s going to be a great experience to hear these tracks live. With an independent and DIY approach, 2020 didn’t come close to knocking the band back, releasing three singles and even managing to produce a music video for Out of my Hands, we can’t wait to see whats in store for us in the coming months. The band have already made an impactful mark in their short tenure, with riff-driven track, Money, being crowned BBC Introducing’s Track of the Week things are looking exciting for The Great Leslie.

We got to know more about the alternative rock band, releasing music in 2020, and what’s in the works for fans to get excited about! 

First off, what’s the story behind the band name?
The story behind our name comes from the film The Great Race, starring Tony Curtis and Jack Lemon. Tony Curtis’s character was The Great Leslie. There was no specific reason for picking it as such, it just happened to be our favourite film and our favourite name out of a long list of names! 

For anyone who hasn’t heard you guys before, how would you describe your music in three words?
The best music.

How did you guys initially come together, where did the musical interest come from?
I think it’s best to describe our coming together as an evolution, considering that this band was originally the Ollie Trevers band, and that there have been a few changes in personnel. I met Ryan (drummer) through social media, and then just before we transitioned to becoming The Great Leslie, we found Jason (bassist), and now we have Julien, who is our brand spanking new guitarist. In terms of interest, we’re all professional musicians and have studied musical, so I there was just a mutual interest in starting a new band!

You had three songs come out in 2020, what was it like releasing music with everything else going on in the world?
Releasing those songs was a welcome distraction from everything that is happening around us, and it was just fantastic to be able to keep going, regardless of the fact that we couldn’t really perform live to anyone. I think the time itself has actually be very beneficial to us, so despite a global pandemic wreaking havoc everywhere, we’ve been very positive about it and made the best of a bad situation.   

The video for ‘Out of my hands’ comes out at the end of the month, what went into making that?
We filmed that video between the second and third lockdown in a freezing cold warehouse in East London, we had to have Covid protocols in place for everyone involved, but I think everyone was so enthusiastic about it and so grateful to be there that it didn’t really matter. It was just a really fun day and we had such an incredibly talented team that made us look so good on camera, for which I am very thankful.

What can fans expect from the video?
Fans can expect a non-lineal story line of varying scenes, accompanied by us looking a bit moody in some shots and happy in others. They can expect to see me pushing Ryan off a bike that I can only assume belonged to a three year old, and they can expect a beautiful video, masterfully directed by the great Julian Smith.

There’s a really good mix of influences you can pick up when listening to your music, but where else do you draw inspiration from?
I think as artists we take inspiration from everything in our lives really. We draw inspiration from things that happen to us on a daily basis. Everything that we experience can be sighted as inspiration to what we create, particularly other forms of art, like literature, paintings, TV shows/films, poetry etc. the list is endless. Anything you feel, that is true and real can inspire.

It’s been tough to keep going through lockdown and being stuck in the same routine, how have you kept going?
Just by taking it one day at a time, writing new music, exercising a lot, watching TV, reading books and practising with the band (as that is legal). Obviously financially it has been a tad difficult but whatever, we’re artists, it’s part and parcel!

As an independent band, what advice would you give to other smaller artists and independent musicians?
I don’t feel like I, or we as a band are in a strong enough position yet to be giving out advice to other artists, but my general advice to anyone doing anything would be to just keep going…persistence and hard work is the most important thing for you to be able to get anywhere in life. 

What else have The Great Leslie fans got to look forward to over the next few months?
From the beginning of May onwards we will be releasing six new singles, with music videos throughout the year and are set to play at a number of festivals (hopefully). We may also have a couple of tours, but this is contingent on the pandemic situation. And to top it all off, we’re updating our website which will soon have many different forms of TGL merchandise, so go check that out!

The brand new video for Out Of My Hands is out now:

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