“I was always pretty angry but to this day I’m not entirely sure what about,” muses 24 year old Ali Warren. Though his singing is more of a rich Jeff Buckley croon than a shout, as a country boy who bucked the school system, moved to London with nothing but a pair of flip-flops, and whose heroes range from Fela Kuti to Doris Day, his lyrics aren’t short of substance. In his own words “Music has given me an excuse to shout a lot whilst being able to call it an art form”.
Raised in Taunton, Somerset, Ali whiled away classroom hours dreaming of being a saxophonist, which stuck as a pipedream when he couldn’t cough up the money for an instrument. But when dope and Blues in the shape of Leadbelly, Robert Johnson and John Lee Hooker took a hold of him Ali turned his attention to the guitar.
Whilst university nearly put him off of music entirely, he did make it to the finishing line. He tried to prevent the degree making music “a trade rather than any sort of expression” grabbing any support slots and open mic opportunities going and eventually compressed all the songs he’d been playing around London into the EP ‘Good Morning I’ve Taken My Medicine”. Now with a fully-fledged band behind him in the form of guitarist Reck, bassist Dan Blatchford, drummer Paul Love and cellist Miriam Wakeling, Ali Warren is working on a full album, which he hopes to tour in order for it to reach as many ears as possible.
Additionally Ali runs London based club night ‘Stroke Your Beard’ with Dan Runciman. The aim of the night is “to get a community going, somewhere that has an audience that listens.” Whether we’re achieving that or not is down to everyone else but whatever happens we’re enjoying ourselves and there’s a lot to be said for that.” That is the approach Ali takes to music-making too, and that is certainly something to shout about.