We sat down for a chat with Tom Hingley to talk about his future gigs, his upcoming solo album, and his other ventures in life, and found it to be quite informative! Turns out he’s quite a fan of Yorkshire…
You’re embarking on a UK tour later on in the year; are you excited? Is there anywhere you’re particularly looking forward to going this time around?
Leeds was always mental as a gig city. The last show I did with Inspiral Carpets at Stereo [the Leeds University bar] was the best one of that tour in 2008. All of Craig Gill’s children were there in the audience. A wonderful city; wonderful memories; a wonderful night.
You’re playing a date at the Belgrave Music Hall in Leeds on 3 August; have you played there before? That date is a little separated from the other ones you are doing later on, what was the reason for this?
Yes, the Kar-Pets played a sold-out show at the Belgrave in May 2017. We’re always proud to dust the old instruments off for a one-off in Leeds.
You’re most well known for being the singer in the Inspiral Carpets. How have you found it trying to separate yourself from them, as a solo artist?
It’s impossible. The Inspiral Carpets days were the best days of my life and it’s one hell of a calling card.
We understand you still play a lot of Inspiral Carpets tracks on tour. What’s the reasoning behind that, and how is the reaction to that stuff versus your solo stuff?
Those songs are what people want to hear and what people pay to hear. The Kar-Pets play only exclusively Inspiral Carpets material, or songs that Inspiral Carpets covered. We are an Inspiral Carpets tribute band.
You’re playing the Leeds date alongside Adore//Repel and False Advertising. Were you a fan of those bands before, and what can you tell our readers about them?
Both Adore//Repel and False Advertising are great. Really great. It’s an honour and a privilege to be playing besides them.
You haven’t released a solo album for a few years – do you have any plans for one in the future? And are you working on any new music at the moment?
I have a new rock album coming out on 8th September with the Tom Hingley Band called I Love My Job. I sing and play guitar on the album; it’s a bit of a departure for me – grunge, punk, electric and angry.
We’re of the understanding that you’ve got into the beer business recently, with your own beers being sold at shows. How did that come about, and have you found to be it a successful industry?
Stephen Holt – former and present singer with the Inspiral Carpets – said in a tweet that, after my sacking from the band, “He was so bitter that he should have a beer named after him”. With an invitation like that, I couldn’t do anything but oblige.
You also teach at Salford University. What more can you tell us about the work you do there, and how do you find it compares to your other ventures?
I don’t actually teach anymore. I got out of touch, and I don’t know any better than anyone else.
What would you say to people to persuade them to come and see you perform; and what can people expect from the Leeds show?
Avoid it at your peril. Come and see us while we are still playing these songs.
We won’t be playing these Inspiral Carpets classics with this level of passion and humour forever. Smell the coffee while it’s still on the boil.
Finally, any last words for the fans?
Stay tuned in. There’s a lot going on in the Kar-Pets world: Happy Mondays supports; a gig in Paris; who knows what’s next.
Cheers, Tom xxxx
By Jane Howkins