brightline | indie pop band

interview and photography: corina esquivel

 

who is BrightLine?

Jacob: Well, the bread and butter of it is; BrightLine is a family. We’re just four friends trying to change the world—one song, conversation, or gig at a time.

My name is Jacob, I play the guitars and sing. I’m originally from England, but spent my life growing up in Mexico. And yes, my dreads are real. We have Lucy, who is the mighty lead singer, hailing from the valleys of Wales. Daniel on beatbox/keys/vocals from the land of Portugal. And last but, of course, not least, we have Joe on drums and percussion from a small village just outside Preston. Sometimes we call him Tiny Joe.

We love music, we love Jesus, and love telling people about Jesus.

Where does the name BrightLine come from?

Jacob: Well, three years ago, when we started the band, we spent the first week discussing names and came up with some awful ones! Names like: ‘Daniel and the Lions’ and ‘Jesus’ Kidney’, but these were quickly discarded. Toward the end of the week, we got really stuck and ended up just flipping through a thesaurus. Eventually, the word BrightLine popped up!

Where did you all meet?

Joe: We work for a Christian charity called The Message Trust. A few years ago, we all went on the training course they run called the Message Academy, which is a 10-month course for people aged 18-25 who want to be trained in youth work, evangelism and using their giftings to tell people about Jesus. Daniel, Jacob, and I all met on the course, and Lucy was on the course the year after. During the year, we all became really good friends. At the end, they asked if we wanted to stay on and form a band, so we said yes and have been doing it ever since. It has been three years, now!

How do you describe your music to people?

Joe: I suppose we’re a mixture of styles, but if we identified with any genre it would be indie pop. We all come from different musical backgrounds. I’m very much from a jazz/funk background, Jacob is from a folk background, Daniel is into hip hop, and Lucy grew up around choirs. So we are influenced by all these styles when writing music. Recently, however, we have been quite influenced by the ’80s, so we’re trying to incorporate the ’80s sound into our music.

The word BrightLine means ‘to set the basic standard’. We read that and thought that it was actually quite beautiful, because the basic standard for us is, as Jesus said, ‘to love God and to love people’. We thought it was quite cool for our name to represent the very core of our faith.

Do you enjoy touring? What are some of your funny experiences from life on the road?

Lucy: Life on the road is always fun! Like Jacob said earlier, we're just a group of friends on a great adventure to try and change the world. As you can imagine, that comes along with a lot of funny stories. One in particular that makes me laugh was when we were out in Slovakia doing some street gigs. On one of the days, we got totally washed out. We managed to do one song and then the heavens opened! We quickly packed away all of our gear but then realized that we were missing our GoPro. Joe quickly remembered that we'd left it out in the rain, so he sprinted off to get it. What I saw next was like a scene out of a James Bond film. Joe tripped, slipped onto his back, slid in a puddle, and, in one swift movement, got back up to his feet and carried on running. I was gutted we didn't catch it on camera!

Jacob: One of my favourite stories is when we were playing one of our first-ever gigs. We play along to a click track that keeps us all in time, which means we all have earphones in while we’re on stage. At this one particular gig, while we were playing a song called ‘Turn Your Voice Up’, one of Joe’s earphones came out and wrapped around one of his drumsticks! I started to hear Joe go slightly out of time, so I turned around to see what was happening and saw him half crouching over the drum kit frantically trying to unwrap it while trying to not hit himself in the face with his drumsticks. The next thing I see is his other earphone fall out and wrap around the other stick. It was hilarious! By this time, Joe was out of time with the rest of us and tangled up in a mess of headphones and drumsticks. I’m sure you can imagine the look on his face while all of was happening! Priceless!

Daniel: It’s funny that our stories revolve around Joe. We love you, Joe.

What are some of your dreams for the future—as a band and individually?

Jacob: To be honest, I’d love to play Glastonbury one day. It’s the biggest and most iconic music festival in the world, and I think that would be amazing! I’d love to travel the world and see our music be more than ‘just music’, because what we are communicating goes beyond just music.

Individually, I can’t wait to be a Dad. My dad has always been someone I have looked up to and would call him one of my best friends, I can’t wait to be able to share that with my own kids.

Daniel: I really believe that we have a message of hope, and I would want for us to be able to share with as many people as we can. I’d love for us to play at different festivals across the country and internationally, as well as including starting our own music festival. Playing at Glasto would be a dream come true.

Personally, I would love to be immersed in the fashion world and have an impact in that industry; to be a light there.

Lucy: My dream is to see where God takes us. He has taken us on some crazy adventures already, and I’m excited to see where we go next.

Personally, my dream is to be the best wife/friend I can be, and to try to be like Jesus in everything I do.

Joe: My dream as a band is to see our music reach more and more people around the world, and for the things we do and say in our music to point to Jesus, that lives would be transformed by what we talk about.

Personally, I don’t really know what I want to do in the future, but I’m trusting that God has an amazing plan.

What inspires you to do what you do?

Lucy: People. People’s stories inspire us to do what we do. We, as BrightLine, aspire to write songs with a meaning. As we travel around schools meeting different people and hearing different stories, we want to be able to bring a new message—a message of hope to some broken and desperate situations. 

And of course, Jesus, because without Him none of us would be here. We wouldn't be BrightLine. 

 

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