IN AN age of tightly scheduled radio, the chances of an unsigned band being played in a daytime show on the nation’s most listened to station is slim.
Yet Leeds band Apollo Junction have managed it – with airplay for their song If I Fell on Graham Norton’s Saturday morning show on BBC Radio 2. The airing seems to have taken even the band by surprise.
“We wrote it and we did not particularly know what to do with it,” says singer Jamie Williamson. “It’s different to the other songs we have. A few people we knew listened to it and started to rave about it so we put it out [on the internet] and people started writing about it.”
When BBC Introducing West Yorkshire presenter Alan Raw played it on BBC Radio Leeds, the ballad seemed to take on a life of its own. Via the station’s Introducing network it was discovered by not only Graham Norton’s team but also BBC 6 Music.
“The response was amazing,” says Williamson. “We’ve had so many messages. Well known blogs have started to get in touch and are writing about it. It’s almost its own entity. It just spilled out of us and has gone on from there.”
Such has been the response to the track that Apollo Junction have delayed the planned release of another single and will officially make If I Fell available as a digital download on April 1. The track is also being remixed by chart-topping producer Mint Royale, of Singin’ in the Rain fame.
For the five-piece, who formed in 2011, to have reached national attention entirely by themselves is remarkable.
“The pattern for unsigned bands is not to be played on national radio without management and a plugger,” says Williamson. “All the industry things they say you have got to have in place we have achieved without them. We’re doing it all ourselves, it’s all DIY.”
Their focus is impressive. “We all have individual roles which we stick to. There are no headless chickens in this band. We all know what we are doing and how to progress.”
April 4, The Cockpit, Swinegate, Leeds, 7pm, £5. http://apollojunction.com/