We’ve a brand new album out on the 30th of the month… It’s called “Happy Bread (and Cruel Hangovers)”. Vinyl, CD, Downloads, a tour!!! Find out more here!
‘If music be the food of love, play on…’Gary Stewart… just now
Hi. Gary here. You may know me from such esteemed critical Blog prose as ‘A Change Of Scenery‘. Or you may know me as the short little drummer providing the engine-like backbeat to Hope & Social. Or even as ‘Legendary Leeds-based singer/songwriter’ (factually incorrect as i now live in Easingwold). What you may not know is that I LOVE eating and have a pretty mean sweet tooth (all baked goods can be sent to: Gary Stewart. Folk Legend. 171 Long Street, Easingwold. YO61 3JB). So it is rather apt that I’ve been charged with writing a blog about the sustenance of Hope & Social throughout writing the New Album (which coincidentally includes Bread in the title) So…
‘On Your Marks. Get Set. Bake…’
During our tenure at Harewood House while jamming – sorry, working hard creating Pop masterworks – we opted for a ‘classier’ form of sustenance for our working days. I feel this was perhaps influenced in part by the fact we were in such grand surroundings and rocking up with a poly bag full of Greggs just wouldn’t cut it. So our mornings were kick-started courtesy of Crust & Crumb in Chapel Allerton and Bondgate Bakery in Otley. Crust and Crumb is top dog. Their sandwich menu is not extensive but the choice of sandwich and wrap is enough to make a Hipster want to bathe himself in the finest Grumpy Mule coffee going. Band favourites were the Lemon Tuna Wrap, Spiced Halloumi Wrap (my preferred default), Turmeric Chickpea & Mango Wrap and Smokehouse Club. C & C’s vegan scotch egg was the Brucey Bonus in this menagerie of meals, closely followed by the vegan slice.
Baked goods were supplied courtesy of Bondgate Bakery in Otley. From awesome flapjack, coconut and raspberry slices to pistachio and lime cake, these sweet treats were enough to put sugary smiles on all our faces, jam on our beards and glee in our bellies. Amen to Hipster Breakfasts H&S style.
‘We don’t do butter love…’Posh Slice – Liversedge
And so from the dizzying heights of Food Heaven to…well, reality. If the wares of Crust and Crumb and Bondgate Bakery marry perfectly to the grandeur of Harewood, then our humble but charming Studio Crypt in Liversedge goes steady with the grease-spooned Posh Slice.
For almost 10 years now the ironically-named sandwich shop has been serving us boys in blue with a grimace and sigh. ‘Lovingly’ reminded that Posh Slice ‘Shuts at 2 love’ (most frequently when we’re ‘phoning our sandwich order in at 1pm) and constantly being reminded that they ‘don’t do butter’ (in reference to my massive aversion and fear of The Devil’s Spread), we bloody love a bit of Posh.
From James and Ed’s tuna, red pepper and red onion (on braaaa’n), Rich’s egg mayo salad (no toms) and the crispiest of bacon, Fletch’s cheese an onion panini, Si’s Egg Mayo Salad (no onion) and my Turkey and Gravy… without Posh we’d be sure to be making music even less turgid than we do currently. The music is always that bit better when we manage to get some Cornish Pasties, chocolate flapjack and Monster Munch into the bargain too…
‘Curry on regardless…’
Thursday night is curry night at H & S Towers when we’re recording a new Album. It has traditionally become known as the ‘long’ in the Google Calendar of doom. 10am until 11pm. So at 9pm we wipe down the two green garden tables, set them up side by side, lay the table (with just not enough cutlery and plates for all six of us, meaning the ‘washer-upper’ gets first dibs at the 12″ plate and real cutlery) and open up what is probably a) the best Curry in West Yorkshire chosen by b) the astute curry connoisseur Richard Huxley esquire.
Samarkand (or Sammi’s as it’s known locally in Heckmondwicke) makes curry that is second-to-none. Honestly. This curry is the $h!t. Throughout our Album-making years (10 and counting) we have constantly returned to Sammi’s for our tea. They are soooooo good; Korai Gosht, Korai Chicken Saag, Murgh Matar Paneer, Chicken Jalfrezi, Lamb Danshak, Chicken Tikka Saag, Korai Fish, Dhal; Garlic, Peshwari, Coriander, Keema naan; more poppadoms than you could karate chop in one go. The partnering of Sammi’s curry with Huxley’s choices is a beautiful thing (my mouth is genuinely watering while writing…).
So there you have it. A whistle-stop tour of the savouries,snacks and sweets that keep Hope & Social going. I hope you had fun and please do take a doggy bag on the way out…
H & S
Note *No Happy Bread™ was ingested during the writing of this Blog.