A young female trio from Norwich playing their own pop-punk tracks are making waves wherever they perform, Hayley Goldsmith catches up with them.
- Maddie Soan (MS) – Bass/Lead Vocals
- Frankie Soan (FS) – Drums/Backing Vocals
- Rhiannon Harris (RH) – Guitar/Backing Vocals
Hayley: Let’s begin with you telling us how you got together and decided to start a band. What’s the story?
Frankie: It was Maddie who had the idea of starting a band, and I was on board straight away. We met our bestie Rhiannon through university, and she just so happened to play guitar and had the same musical interests as us. We met up for a first rehearsal just for fun really, and it went from there! Pink Lemonade was born.
Hayley: Who are your influences?
Rhiannon: As a group it’s Bowling For Soup, Blink-182, McFly, Patent Pending, All Time Low, Avril Lavigne – All the pop and pop-punk classics. My biggest musical inspiration is the band Queen. Their strong and powerful sound can be traced back to classical music and they’ve had a huge impact on the development of rock music.
Hayley: How did you choose the band name and what others were on the short list?
Pink Lemonade: We wanted to choose a name pretty quickly so we could get out into the big wide world. We started by brain storming ideas and then calling ourselves by one of them until we were happy. It was a total coincidence that James Bay released a song titled Pink Lemonade right after we settled on that. The other ideas must’ve been rubbish because we can’t even remember any of them!
Hayley: Did you always know what type of music you wanted to write/perform, or did you have lots of discussions & try out different things?
Frankie: We were all really keen on writing pop-punk music as this is a genre we all enjoy. I think it’s only recently we have really started to find our sound and are writing songs we are all super pleased with!
Hayley: Which song do you most like to perform, and why?
Frankie: My favourite song to perform is ‘Rewind’, it’s one of our latest songs and will be on our upcoming EP. It’s upbeat, fun, and I enjoy the backing vocals – ‘oh my gosh!’.
Hayley: What made you choose your current instruments?
Frankie: I played the drums on guitar hero and I just really enjoyed it so started having lessons on a real kit!
Hayley: Do any of you play other instruments?
Rhiannon: I began learning classical piano at the age of 5 and passed my grade 8 with distinction last year. I started learning rock guitar at the age of 10 and now enjoy performing, composing and teaching both instruments.
Maddie: I play acoustic guitar as well as the bass, mostly finger style. I had a few lessons on the double bass too and flute when I was younger.
Hayley: What’s your song writing process? Who does what, ie one do the lyrics and one the melody, or is it joint? Tell us how it works:
Maddie: The songwriting process for us that produces the best results, is if one of us brings a musical idea to a rehearsal. This could be a chord progression, a riff, a theme or hook line. We then all expand on that until the song is completed, lyrics work best when we all contribute and tell a story. Generally, we will each write our own parts (eg. Frankie writes the drums, Maddie the bass line/melody, Rhiannon the lead guitar etc).
Hayley: Do you remember your first gig? Were you nervous and did it go well?
Pink Lemonade: Our first Pink Lemonade gig was an open mic night at our uni in The Academy (which sadly no longer exists). We had only been a band for a few weeks with two original songs, but somehow headlined the night. We think it went well as people shouted for an encore – the only other song we knew was New Rules by Dua Lipa haha.
Hayley: Who styles you?
Pink Lemonade: We do! Pink and punky is the go to.
Hayley: What was it like to release your first single?
Pink Lemonade: We found it super exciting to release our first single. A lot of hard work went into it, but it was really fun and we received a positive response.
Hayley: Are you at college/studying?
Pink Lemonade: Maddie and Frankie are currently in their third year at Anglia Ruskin University studying Music and Performing Arts. Rhiannon has recently graduated with a first class degree in music and is now training to be a music teacher.
Hayley: When you are not making music, what hobbies do you enjoy?
Maddie: I’m lucky in that music was always my hobby but now I get to do it in my studies and in a slightly more professional sense. I don’t have time for anything else!
Hayley: When you become famous, what will your rider be?
Pink Lemonade: Pizza and ice cream!!
Hayley: What’s your party trick?
Pink Lemonade: Rhiannon can play ‘I Believe in a Thing Called Love’ by The Darkness on guitar behind her head, wowie!
Hayley: How often do you get to practice together?
Pink Lemonade: We try to rehearse together weekly but sometimes less if we have more than one gig in a week. It can sometimes be difficult fitting it in while we are all studying and working part time too.
Hayley: Where do you practice?
Maddie: We practice at mine and Frankie’s dads house, in his dining room! He kindly lets us keep all our gear stored in there. Thanks Petey!
Hayley: Where is the furthest you have travelled for a gig? And how do you travel to a gig…I imagine you all in a pink beetle…
Frankie: Although Rhiannon could not make it, Pink Lemonade have actually performed in New Jersey, USA! Maddie and I did a semester abroad in 2018. We always travel by car, I would love a pink one someday! But for the time being, I have kitted out my silver Ford Fusion in pink accessories.
Hayley: What artist/group would you like to support?
Pink Lemonade: McFly! We’ve all been fans of them since we were young. Maddie still has her tour t-shirt from 2006!
Hayley: If you could choose any singer/musician to join the band for one gig, who would it be?
Pink Lemonade: Avril Lavigne, she’s a pop punk princess.
Hayley: What challenges are there being a girl band?
Maddie: There are sooo many! I think the main one being we are always underestimated and undermined as musicians. People never expect much from us in that department. They presume that because we are girls (or because we’re young, or a combination of both), we must all be vocalists or not very good at our instruments. We have to work extra hard to be just as good as a male band.
Hayley: Do you all get on, really?
Pink Lemonade: YES! Really well.
Hayley: You have been the Audience Choice at the NMG Awards for 2 years in a row – how does that make you feel?
Pink Lemonade: It feels so amazing to know we have lots of people supporting us. We never expected to win it once, so twice is awesome.
Hayley: What are your dreams/ambitions for the band?
Maddie: I think like most musicians, we would love to just be able to make a living out of being in the band. We love song writing, recording and performing together and if we could do that for a job, that’d be a dream come true!
Hayley: When is your next gig or release?
Pink Lemonade: We don’t have an official date just yet but are releasing an EP (hopefully before Christmas) along with our debut music video. Our next gig is supporting Vistas at the Waterfront, Norwich later this month. Our Facebook is the best place to keep up with our gig dates. – PinkLemonadeMusicUK