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Dare to dream big
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They say that New Year is meant to be a time for a fresh start; to let go of all the stress the past 12 months has brought us and to begin again with a relaxed mind and happy heart. However, a new study conducted by luxury worldwide holiday specialists Hayes and Jarvis has found that even the most positive of starts to a new year don’t and can’t stop us Brits from getting stressed, with a third of those questioned – 32% – saying they feel stressed on holiday due to thinking about work, and another third – 30% – admitting to having their holiday ruined because of their jobs.
The Hayes and Jarvis statistics have been released to coincide with new data from the Office of National Statistics, which revealed that around 10,890 holidays abroad were taken by UK residents in January 2017, with many believed to be an effort to beat the January blues and the third Monday of the month known as ‘Blue Monday.’
No matter where residents jet off to however, it would seem the stress of their daily lives, combined with the pressures of work, don’t disappear once they step foot on foreign or overseas soil. Instead, Brits take an average of two days to switch off completely, with 75% of those in London taking as long as four days to finally put their feet up and relax.
In an effort to help the people of the UK switch off from the stress, Hayes and Jarvis have created “The Four Pillars of Holiday Relaxation”, an expert guide to relaxing and winding while on holiday. The Four Pillars campaign focuses on four categories of well-being; physical, communication, mental and nutritional and includes helpful tips and advice from experts on how individuals can completely unwind and feel relaxed while on their break. The detailed information pack also includes a free downloadable PDF, the result of a collaboration with Mind and the British Nutritional Foundation among others, which offers 24 mindfulness tips to help combat stress on the go.
A spokesman from Hayes and Jarvis says of the campaign:
“We are a nation that often finds it hard to de-stress and unwind from our day-to-day worries, and a holiday should be the perfect time to take yourself away from this to connect with yourself, friends and loved ones. Our holidaymakers personally invest time and money into choosing a holiday that is tailor made for them as individuals with the ultimate aim of relaxing, unwinding and creating new experiences. With the help of some tips and advice from industry experts, our guide is an essential tool to help you leave the stress at home and ensure a holiday really is what it sets out to be.”
With Ireland’s globally successful music history – here’s looking at you, U2 and The Script – you might think that up and coming Dublin trio Stolen City would be feeling the pressure. Instead, the three friends, Sean, Dave and Ian, are paving their own way in the industry. With big plans in the works for the coming year, ThisIsTheLatest caught up with the band to find out more about their musical influences, their thoughts on social media and their dreams of touring the world.
TITL: First of all, please introduce yourselves and tell us a little about your role in the band.
Stolen City: We are Stolen City, we consist of 3 members Sean, Ian (Bailey) and Dave. Sean is the lead singer and rhythm guitar player of the band, Bailey is the drummer of the band and Dave plays rhythm guitar and mandolin.
TITL: How do the three of you know each other/how did you meet?
SC: Sean and Dave met in college in Dublin where they were both studying music, performance and production and formed an instant friendship that they never thought would turn into what it has. They started performing together as a duo early into the year and with continued success decided to form a band. They invited Bailey into the band and have been together since.
TITL: Which bands and artists are you most inspired and influenced by and how do those artists impact the music you make?
SC: We have so many different influences and bring so many different styles into our music. Sean`s influences mainly come from singer-songwriters and solo performers such as Foy Vance, JP Cooper and Gavin James. Dave’s influences are mainly bands such as Mumford & Sons, The 1975 and The XX. Bailey brings a style that mainly comes from his favorite band, Green Day, and he also loves Swing and big band music.
TITL: What would you say is your unique selling point as a band?
SC: Our unique selling point is our music. There`s nothing like it in the market today and it`s something completely unique to us and we are so passionate about it.
TITL: Is there a story behind your latest track “Last Night”? Can you recall where you were when you wrote it?
SC: “Last Night” is a song we wrote in early 2017 to put on our EP but when we recorded it and heard it back it was too special to us to just release it on our EP so we saved it to be released on its own as a single.
TITL: Have you an album in the works and if so, is there anything you can tease us with about it?
SC: We can`t say exactly what we do have in the works but there is something coming towards the end of this year. However we can tell you that we are spending a good amount of time in the recording studio and writing music this year.
TITL: If you could collaborate with any other band or artist, who would you choose and why?
SC: Oh god, that`s a really hard question to answer there`s so many incredible artists out there at the moment. We all have different answers Sean would love to collaborate with Gavin James, Dave would love to collaborate with Mumford & Sons and Bailey would love to collaborate with Green Day.
TITL: Of the shows you’ve played so far in your career, is there one that stands out? If so, which is it and why is/was it so memorable for you?
SC: Dave and Bailey`s favourite show was definitely a festival we played in Co.Mayo Ireland called “Band on The Strand” there was a crowd of over 4,000 people where we played a set of our original songs and got an incredible reaction and had the crowd so interested in the show we put on.
Sean`s favorite show was a more intimate gig we played on the main stage in Whelan`s Dublin. There was a sold out crowd on the night and we were the headline act. We played a full set of our original songs and had the crowd singing them back to us it was amazing and unforgettable.
TITL: For those who haven’t seen you live yet, how would you describe a Stolen City show?
SC: A Stolen City show guarantees to entertain – it`s full of surprises and fun. We are extremely energetic and really know how to get a crowd going. Trust us if you miss a Stolen City show, you are missing something special.
TITL: If you could play one venue, anywhere in the world, with three artists/bands living or dead, where would it be and who would be on the bill?
SC: Oh this one’s easy we would love to play Red Rocks Amphitheatre and on the bill would be Queen, The Beatles, Ourselves and Thin Lizzy.
TITL: Will you be hitting the road again later this year?
SC: We will be hitting the road again this year if all of our plans fall into place but we can’t say dates or venues yet.
TITL: You’re earning yourselves a considerable following on social media, notably Twitter. To what extent has that impacted/boosted your career?
SC: Social media boosts our listeners, fans, friends and also opens up opportunities for us all around the world because it has such a broad spectrum and such a wide reach it really is incredible and drives us to work harder and harder every-day.
TITL: Given the success of Irish bands such as U2 and more recently, The Script, do you ever feel any pressure to ‘have’ to follow in their footsteps and achieve the same levels of popularity and success they’ve earned over the years? Or, are you more a ‘let’s enjoy the ride while it lasts and see where it goes’ kind of band?
SC: We don`t feel any pressure at all to follow in the footsteps of other bands because we`re so different. We really believe that what we do makes a difference not just to us but to others and that’s all we can ask for. We work harder than anyone out there we push our limits and we are not afraid to take risks and we will hopefully make our own pathway to success.
TITL: Finally then, where would you like to yourselves 5 years from now? What’s the long-term objective for the band and what would you have to achieve in order to turn to one another and say ‘We’ve made it.’?
SC: In 5 years’ time we would love to be touring the world and we would love our music to be reaching millions upon millions of people. We are confident in what we do and we know if we push ourselves and if we work hard we will someday get to where we want to be. For us to say “We`ve made it” we would have to play a sold out show to thousands of people who know every word to every song, that`s the dream and that`s what drives us.
Check out the video for Stolen City’s new single “Last Night” below and for more information on the band, give their page a like on Facebook or follow them on Twitter.