The Whisky Sessions, Manchester’s newest music festival, debuts at the Victoria Warehouse next month with I Am Kloot as a headliner. Karen Connolly reveals what else is in store and chats to Kloot frontman, John Bramwell.

With a raft of musical talent and a hefty consignment of the hard stuff, The Whisky Sessions will take over Manchester’s Victoria Warehouse on November 21 and 22, 2014.

Bands including Gomez, British Sea Power, Turin Breaks, Dodgy, Badly Drawn Boy and Tim Burgess will play over two stages, and headlining on the Friday night is I Am Kloot.

The latter make their only Manchester gig appearance of the year and Bramwell says they’re all looking forward to it.

“Looks like it’s set to be a great event,” he says, “something different.

“You know, there’s not many winter festivals around, especially up North, and the venue is amazing too.”

John Bramwell by Chris PayneBramwell is currently on a successful solo tour – it finishes September 2015 – and says he loves the contrast of playing with Kloot and getting up on stage on his own. He admits the solo performances give him that bit of time to chat to his audience…be something of a raconteur at times perhaps?

He laughs: “Yes, that’s right. I like sharing some of my stories I’ve gathered along the way.

“But I like the contrast of the big and small venues too. In the small ones, it’s just me and my guitar, maybe not knowing my set list.

“Then again, I also like the drama of a big show.

“I’m very lucky I can do both.”

A prolific songwriter, Bramwell laughs when asked if he shuts himself away in a barren bothy on some remote hilltop to write songs or do things just ‘come’ to him while, say, walking round Tesco?

“Er, no. But I do tend to try and be alone when I write, you need to concentrate, think and be inspired. And that doesn’t normally happen to me while I’m walking round Tesco.”

Bramwell reckons The Whisky Sessions will be a bit of both – the excitement of a festival along with the kind of intimacy and camaraderie you get from hometown gigs.

“It’s always a pleasure to be on home turf,” he says. “We’re all really looking forward to it – it’s going to be a fantastic show.”

By Karen Connolly

Images by Chris Payne


John Bramwell by Chris PayneFor information about John Bramwell’s solo tour visit

For information about The Whisky Sessions, click here