“We’re broke, but we’re living and we enjoy it.” There you have it: the overarching sentiment that drives Skinny Living to pursue music and inspired their band name. “We are constantly bouncing back and forth from having a bit of money to really struggling,” explains frontman Ryan Johnston, but, far from enough to deter this soulful pop quartet from the industry, the band’s passion for melody making triumphs over money troubles. After all, haven’t we all had to live skinny at some point or other?
Johnston, Will Booth, Danny Hepworth and Rhys Anderton might not have had it easy, but the way they met seems like something close to fate. “We all went to an open mic night as solo artists and then it just made sense,” shrugs Hepworth. “Ryan couldn’t play any instruments and he’s a better singer than us three, so it worked out better that all of us got together.” In the four years since their formation, Skinny Living have worked relentlessly to craft their signature sound, refining their amalgamation of musical influences that range from hip hop to Bill Withers. “Music with a groove in it, we like,” says Johnston. Sounds more than acceptable.
A busy year for the Wakefield band, 2017 has seen the release of their latest EP, “6”, as well as an eventful summer on the festival circuit, where they found themselves on the same line-up as Justin Bieber at British Summer Time. “On his rider he had a full basketball court, that he didn’t use the whole time he was there,” Hepworth laughs, “his area was just over a little fence from where we were.” A glimpse of life on a full fat budget.
In the midst of a tour, with their fresh track “Fade” rapidly gaining momentum, it looks as though this year’s earlier successes were prophetic. This is where the fun starts. When asked about the tour, their excitement is difficult to conceal. “It’s the best part [of being in the band], without a doubt,” smiles Johnston, “watching people singing words back to you and hugging their partner. That’s the most emotional part, it makes me emotional now talking about it. It’s just really, really powerful.” With passion that runs that deep, there’s no telling how far Skinny Living will go.
Taken from the Winter 17/18 Issue of Wonderland; out now and available to buy here.