In 2010, we released Zer0. We were having really good reviews and airplay all over the world and were all set to try and capitalise on it with a 3rd record which we thought we would release in late 2011/early 2012. Then the fun began…
We were hit with the news that out long time bassist Craft had decided he didn’t want to be in the band anymore. So we recruited a new bass player. When we did, we rehearsed for a few months and played our first show without Craft. The day after we did that, we were crushed by the news that Gary had to have major knee surgery on his knee. And if he didn’t he probably wouldn’t walk again. We fulfilled a few outstanding gigs that we had booked with a drummer friend of ours and then decided to write until his knee was fixed. Then we were told that our bassist had lost faith in the project and didn’t want to be part of V0iD anymore…
3 major operations and a good 6 months of rehab and physiotherapy later and Gary was walking unaided for the first time in a year. We decided to try and get the band back together. After a long, long time of searching and meeting prospective bass players we looked in house. AK had already joined the band as another lead guitarist, my initial idea was to have three guitars and one bass, but get people to commit proved too much hard work, so Wayne 2 swapped the six strings for four – Jackpot! Turns out, he’s much better on bass than he was on guitar. He’s comfortably the best bass player this band has had…
After a few rehearsals and gigs, it was obvious that in fact the band sounded better than we had before. We needed to get the band on record. So we started writing. Normally, I would take care of the writing side, but on this occasion, all four of us had input into at least one of the songs…
I wanted the album to mean something not just to me, but to engage others as well. I kept coming back to the idea that it would have been easier to throw the towel in and move on with our lives, but we just didn’t want to quit. I started writing about themes that resonated with me. But the album was missing something. We had already started to record the drums on the album with Tim Hamill of Sonic One Studio Fame so time was short. I wrote something quite interesting and then sent the song to the rest of the band asking should I finish it. They all came back with a resounding yes. So I finished the song. That song was called ‘Keep Fighting’.
I had two particular sources of inspiration… They were two people. Two people who had literally been to hell and back and were still here to not only tell their story, but use it as a reason to help others… They kept on, when it may have been easier to throw the towel in. They kept fighting.
The first person was a gentleman by the name of Bram Van Aarle… I only knew Bram at the time through email. Bram had contacted us completely out of the blue… He wanted to thank us for helping to bring him through some of his toughest times. When I asked what he meant he explained that he had suffered a brain tumour and while recovering from his operations and treatment, he started to listen to our song ‘Beaten & Bruised’. He told me the lyrics resonated with him and in turn he felt it helped him get through his treatment. Bram, now volunteers by cooking and serving meals to mentally ill people in his native Holland. When V0iD played in the Bosuilfeesteen in Belgium in June 2014, Bram and his partner Ellie drove across from Holland to watch us play, so we got to meet, chat and share a beer with him. Having written a song, which may have helped a complete stranger at the time, no matter how small that help may have been, changed the way I looked at things I guess.
The second person who was also at the front of my thinking whilst I was writing was someone from Betws, by the name of Ryan Davies. I met Ryan at a V0iD gig in 2006. We had just released an EP and he came to see us with his friend Paul, who was friends with Craft. Ryan at the time, was a young, physically fit typical lad really. He was massively into his Rugby and Cricket, playing for his local teams and was also big into his music. Ryan was a nice boy and I liked him instantly. Not too long after our first meeting, I was told that Ryan had fallen ill. Ryan was diagnosed with Leukaemia. From nothing. I had literally seen him a few weeks previous looking as fit and healthy as ever. Then this. After weeks and months of what must have been hell for Ryan and his family whilst he was undergoing his treatment, he contacted me… He was organising a Charity night at his local Rugby Club and the benefits would be given to the Hospitals that had helped save his life. Of course, I agreed and V0iD played the night. It was packed to the rafters and lots of money was raised for the charity. This is where Ryan’s charity was born, Ryan4Leukaemia.
Since then, V0iD has played quite a few of his fundraising events. At one event Ryan even joined us on stage and sang a Snow Patrol song that had helped him through his darkest days… Ryan, in between going to hospital and having treatment for his illness, has carried on fund raising to this very day. So far, he has raised over £25,000 and every single penny of that has been put back into the hospitals that helped save his life.
Both Bram and Ryan are shining examples of the message that we want to share.
Music is a powerful thing, writing something, which even in the tiniest way, may have helped perhaps give just one person the will to carry on means that the song totally served its purpose. I wanted to try and do more of it… So here is the homemade video for Keep Fighting. The song will soon be available as a free download to all. Our 3rd album will also be called Keep Fighting and it will be released in April 2015.
Do you want to get involved? Well, you can…You can get involved in our album launch by telling us about a time when you were down on your luck and what or who helped you pull through. It can be a time when you were ill, if you were skint, you were struggling for a job… It doesn’t matter, as big or as small as it may seem. We want to hear about a time where you had to #KeepFighting
You can do this by emailing us your story, you can tell us anonymously or you can tell the whole world. You can just tweet a song, a video, a song lyric, poem, film clip, film quotes etc. Whatever is was that inspired you and hash tag it #KeepFighting.
We want you to get involved.
We want you to be a part of our story…
We really appreciate the support, take it easy.