A few years ago, I remember walking into The Venue in the small Lancashire town of Colne on an open mic night to see one man and his guitar amidst plenty of women swooning. If he wasn’t on the stage performing, he was behind the bar pouring my ‘I’ve lost count of what number this is’ shot of Sambuca.
Patrick Ralphson, a 21-year-old lad from Trawden, will perform to over half a million people in O2 arenas next year. In 2020, Patrick took place in the BBC One music competition: Little Mix: The Search where he was shaped into the four-man indie band, Since September. The aim of the music competition was to form a band, Patrick’s ensemble was the instrumental and vocal group, and they took the crown in November 2020. Patrick, Jacob, Harry, and Matthew competed against five other bands for the winning title and will join Little Mix in their Confetti Tour in 2022. Patrick gives the band their rockstar credentials, and gives us a sneaky peek into where it all began…
The night Patrick won he turned his phone off for 24 hours. I could only imagine the endless sound of notifications that must have been popping up on screen. “I’m just a lad from Colne,” giggles Patrick, “it was ridiculous! After a quick 10 minute zoom session with my family, I turned my phone off. So much happened, but I remember everything from that night. After the gold streamers came down and the cameras were of, it was just us (the band) and the producers on the stage, and for some reason we all just started singing ‘Shine’ by Take That!” ‘Let it shine…’ Patrick sings at me down the phone. Who needs to pay for tickets when I have had my own free show!
“For as long as I can remember my dad played guitar and every day when he got in from work, and I’d beg him to play Lynyrd Skynyrd’s ‘Freebird’. He taught me how to play and he’s the reason why I play, I just wanted to impress him and still do.”
Patrick recalls one of his first memories on stage in his first year of school, a blessing in disguise. “I was going to sing ‘Johnny B Goode’ by Chuck Berry with a girl from the year above. I didn’t have many mates at school, it was quite sad. I think the girl realised that being stood on stage with me would have been social suicide, so she sacked it off on the day. I knew nobody else would do it with me, so I just did it myself. I fell in love with singing from there, it was the first time I’d ever sang in front of hundreds of people so it was quite scary for an 11-year-old. That night I came home, picked up my dad’s guitar, learned how to sing, playing all the classic acoustic tunes.
“When I was 14, I discovered Catfish and the Bottlemen, I just wanted to be Van McCann. At the time I’d just joined a band called Critical Reaction, we went to Bands on the Square, a local live music event in Barnoldswick. I thought, I really want be on that stage too.”
Two years later, he was up rocking on the stage.
I asked him if he would still perform again for his home town after his new found fame
“Maybe… maybe.” Patrick chuckled. “I’ll rock up after I’ve played the O2. It’d always be nice to come back and keep in touch with my roots.
“I went to the pub with my mate the other day and people were saying, “You’re the guy from TV!”. I’m not used to it at all. Me and two of my bandmates, Harry and Matty are living together in North London. I’m flying the nest finally but it’s going to be fun. We will just be grafting, writing and recording, when we’re together it’s electric,” he grins.
“I’ll still miss the north. I’ll miss the fresh air and being able to walk a few minutes before I’m in the countryside.
Yesterday, a woodpecker with crazy colours landed in my garden, stuff like that won’t happen in London. I’ll just see pedigree dogs and bin foxes!”
“I didn’t have many mates at school, it was quite sad. I think the girl realised that being stood on stage with me would have been social suicide, so she sacked it off on the day.”Patrick Ralphson
Patrick studied Politics and German at University in Manchester, but gambled his future to devote all his efforts to music. “I’d rather full-arse one thing than half-arse two things. The degree was a joint honours, and it would have just absolutely annihilated me. I stepped back and looked at my situation and thought do I want to be in my room watching lectures or writing music. I just want a guitar in my hand every day. It is worth taking a punt for, if the risk pays off then the reward is unprecedent.”
For Patrick, nothing is as cool as writing songs with their manager Roy Stride, frontman of pop-rock band ‘Scouting for Girls’. “The competition was commissioned through a company called Modest Company. They’ve managed Little Mix, One Direction, JLS and Olly Murs. We originally met him when he was a song writer and he was looking to go into management, so we just went from there. He is a genius so it’s amazing to get into the science of song writing. He is a master of it.”
What can we expect from Since September?
“The first single is coming out. The second and third single are on their way too, huge stadium style songs. We’re playing some festivals this year and the Little Mix tour next year… I’m buzzing. I’ll be playing to over half a million people in 30 days, it’s ridiculous, it doesn’t compute in my head how many people that actually is. I won’t understand the gravity of what it is until we step out in Belfast on the first night to 16,000 people.
“The reason I got to where I’ve got, I just didn’t put any pressure on myself because it was the world of pop, it was alien to me, it’s all alien to me. The only people I’ve ever had around are people who have had a cigarette as a vocal warm up.” Patrick laughs.