After scratching their heads for something fun to do during the nation’s first lockdown, one group of talented musicians decided to come together and do what they do best – make some top-quality music.
Forming new band Jetstream 2020, Martin Diamond, Darren Williamson, Dave Kelly and Ben Stephenson settled on the idea after devoting their lives to music, and needing a positive distraction from the uncertainty of Covid.
And proving just how well they work together, the group, based in-and-around Whitehaven, has already written 11 original songs, ready to release their album in the upcoming months.
“Shredder” Ben, 24, said: “I’ve wanted to start or join a music project ever since I came back from studying music at university, and it feels amazing to find like minded musicians in the area that are skilled.
“It can be quite rare to get a band together where all members are competent!”
44-year-old Martin, who has worked with band mate Darren since 2013, added: “I love it – it’s good to collaborate with such talented people.
“It’s also been really great welcoming Dave and Ben into the fold, who are both very talented individuals!
“I’ve also recruited my wife Michelle to provide backing vocals on many of the tracks, and she’s also found it great fun and a welcome release from the seriousness of the current climate.”
With their first single, Walking Dead, and its music video already released, the group hopes to let fellow rock fans hear another two songs before releasing the full album – and the challenges created by Covid aren’t stopping them.
“We all recorded [Walking Dead] before we actually met,” Darren, 42, explained.
“It was very [uneasy] recording tracks with people before you knew there was chemistry, but thankfully we have all clicked on a musical and personal level.”
He added: “I’m really looking forward to more social distant practices, and getting the songs perfect for when we can eventually gig safely.”
Explaining just how the group pulled off filming their music video, Martin said: “I would record a demo version of the tracks, then we recorded all the parts remotely, again at our own homes.
“Then I would then take all our parts and compile, mix and master until we were all happy with the finished product.”
He added that the group only met as a band for the first time at Racket Studios, Cleator Moor, and there recorded their music video with social distancing, PPE and plenty of hand sanitiser involved.
“I then edited the video and eventually we had the final piece – one we’re all quite proud of,” he said.
And Dave, 54, has loved every second of following his dreams during the pandemic, and said: “Music has always been a big part of my life.
“I love playing, and being given the chance to work with such talented guys creating original music was too strong a draw.
“Working with Martin, Darren and Ben gives me a real buzz, and it’s a real lift during these difficult times.”
To listen to Jetstream 2020’s Walking Dead, and watch the video, visit the group’s Youtube channel, head to jetstream.bandcamp.com, or have a listen on any streaming service.