Encore, Do You Want More?
Hey everyone! We are Encore and welcome to our new column for The Wrap Up. We’re going to be writing exclusively here every month, so be sure to keep coming back for all the latest news and gossip, directly from us. For those of you who are currently unaware of who we are and what we’re about, we’re an urban/pop band and we’re signed to Island Records...
There’s three of us – Mark Asari, Cairo Benn and Pierre Jermaine – and before we came together as a band, we were all doing our own thing within the music industry. Mark was a published writer and has written ‘Snap’ for Tinie Tempah, ‘Look For Me’ for Chipmunk, and also co-written Chip’s number one hit, ‘Oopsy Daisy’ – which reached No. 1 in 2009. Cairo was doing acoustic soul gigs and writing his own stuff. It was during that time that Pierre met Cairo through a mutual friend of ours and it turned out that we were both managed by Richard Castillo, who managed N-Dubz at the time. Rich suggested that we linked up with Mark, so we gelled together during our first session and that’s pretty much how we came together.
We’re hoping that 2012 will be a big year for us. We know that we’re going to have to work really hard to get to where we want to be, so we all really enjoyed having some downtime over Christmas and New Year. We all decided to have a fairly low-key New Year’s Eve and we all did different things to celebrate the start of the New Year. Pierre spent it in bed chilling out. Cairo lives in Folkestone, which is next to Dover, and there is a set of hills overlooking the town, so he went there with his parents and his lovely girlfriend, Jade, to watch the fireworks going off at midnight. It was wicked! Mark went to church and then went to a house party. We all took it easy this year, which was probably down to us not having enough money to really party. Hopefully next year will be different.
We’re calling this month ‘Cover Month’, because we’ve filmed and recorded quite a few covers, which can be seen online at our official website. We’ve never recorded so many covers in our lives, but we’re doing it as a present to our fans. We want to have a strong online presence and we decided a good way to do that would be to do our own versions of songs that our fans like, so we’ve covered tracks by the likes of James Morrison, Coldplay, JLS and One Direction. Our newest cover to go online is ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ by Gotye. Do check them out!
We’re currently busy promoting our new single, ‘Fun Last Night’, which is out on February 26. We’ve got some tough competition, though, because Dappy is releasing ‘Rockstar’, Wretch 32 is releasing his track with Angel, and the One Direction boys are also releasing their songs on the same day. It’s a heavyweight week and we’d be satisfied if we got into the top ten. We’ve been doing lots of interviews and keeping everyone updated through our Facebook and Twitter pages. We’re really lucky, because we have a great street team helping us out with the promotion – shouts to Enya, Graham Westberg and Vicky Dempster for their help. The video has been getting played on several television stations and it got its first play on BBC Radio 1 the other week, which was really exciting.
We’re starting to get people recognising us in the street on the back of the video being played on TV. Earlier today, Mark noticed a girl who spotted us. She shouted out, ‘Oh my gosh! There’s, erm, those guys off the TV!’ We find that we get noticed more outside of London. Being spotted by people on the street is really cool. You do come across some real characters when you’re out and about. Last year, we’d been doing an interview at a radio station and there was a guy hanging round, who knew who we were, but wasn’t sure how many members were in the band, so he came right up to us and said in a really scary voice, ‘How many of you are therrreee?’ But it was all good.
We’re really hoping that you will love ‘Fun Last Night’ and that you’ll tell a friend to tell a friend about us! Now is probably a good time to point out that Pierre holds a black belt in kickboxing, so we don’t want to have to send him around to sort you out if you don’t! Haha! We wouldn’t really do that, we’re actually quite soft because Mark hates big insects and Cairo has a fear of bees, wasps and, erm, cotton wool. We know, we know.
Anyway, we hope you all have a great month and we’re looking forward to sharing the next part of our journey with you next month, right here on The Wrap Up.
Encore were speaking with Stephen Almond (@LFCSteAl)
Online editing: Joseph 'JP' Patterson (@Jpizzledizzle)