Midlothian band The Big Day to appear in final of BBC Introducing Scottish Act of the Year

Midlothian indie rockers set for Saturday night TV appearance
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Midlothian indie rockers The Big Day will hit our TV screens on Saturday as one of four finalists in the BBC Introducing Scottish Act of the Year, to be shown on BBC Scotland at 9.50pm on Saturday.

The band, who are now based in Glasgow, are made up of singer/ guitarist Ryan Hunter from Pathhead, Leo Lyne from Pathhead on bass, drummer Matthew Graham from Lasswade and guitarist Rhauri Branigan from Belfast. Formed in late 2021, The Big Day’s first headline shows were sold out nights at King Tut’s in Glasgow and Sneaky Pete’s in Edinburgh, following a UK tour slot supporting their friends Baby Strange. They have released two songs so far, Fashion Statement and Bad Things, which both received national radio play which helped introduce them to new fans.

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The Big Day, who always catch the eye on stage by wearing suits and shades, saw off competition from 500 Scottish bands to make the final in front of a live studio audience, where they played a mash-up cover of Blondie song Atomic and Calvin Harris and Ellie Goulding hit Miracle, as well as their debut single Fashion Statement.

Midlothian band The Big Day, who will appear on BBC Scotland on Saturday night. Photo by Daniel Blake.Midlothian band The Big Day, who will appear on BBC Scotland on Saturday night. Photo by Daniel Blake.
Midlothian band The Big Day, who will appear on BBC Scotland on Saturday night. Photo by Daniel Blake.

Singer Ryan Hunter was delighted the band had the opportunity to play live in front of the TV cameras at such an early stage in their career.

He said: “It felt super affirming to be in that position in such a short space of time. Starting a band during lockdown can lead to anxiety but to have only released two tracks and get to this stage already means a lot and shows us what we are capable of as a band and what we can do already. It was an amazing experience. It was great to be nominated amongst so many amazing acts. The fact that the judges picked us in the final eight from 500 was brilliant. Then it went to a public vote to decide the final four in the live final, which shows the support we already have from the public.”

Speaking about the band’s interesting mash-up cover they perform on the BBC show, Ryan added: “A couple of weeks ago we were playing around with a few ideas. I said ‘what’s number one in the charts just now’, and it was the Calvin Harris song. When I heard it I thought it would be funny to put our own spin on it and as it sounded a bit like Atomic we tried putting them together. It’s grown arms and legs and the crowd loved it.”

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Also speaking about appearing in front of the TV cameras, bass player Leo Lynn said: “It’s amazing to be able to say we were in the final four. We still feel that win or lose it shouldn’t define you as a band. All we really wanted to do is have fun and blow the roof off the place. It will speak for itself when people see it on TV. It went great.

Midlothian/ Belfast four-piece The Big Day. Photo by Cameron Brisbane.Midlothian/ Belfast four-piece The Big Day. Photo by Cameron Brisbane.
Midlothian/ Belfast four-piece The Big Day. Photo by Cameron Brisbane.

"Just to be in the mix is brilliant. We have a great motto in the band, ‘keep the heid’, which is great, as while it’s important to be confident as a band, you can’t let your ego get out of control and get carried away. You need to stay grounded. We just released our second single a few weeks ago so we are still riding the wave of that. Our next single is ready to go, we are just planning the release and we are back in the studio again soon. We have an appearance at TRNSMT and other festivals so we have a big summer ahead of us.”

The local band have also been long-listed as finalists for this year’s Glastonbury Emerging Talent Competition to play the world-famous music festival.

Speaking about the origins of and the future for The Big Day, Ryan said: "I wrote some songs during lockdown and moved to Glasgow at the end of lockdown and then looked for pals to play with in the band. So I knew what the first songs I wanted to release were. I went into the studio with our drummer Matt and then we got the others in place and it happened naturally.

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"Out first headline show was at King Tut’s the day restrictions ended in Scotland in early 2022. We had been down to play St Luke’s but that was cancelled due to a Covid spike closing venues again. The crowd at King Tut’s were absolutely up for it, first night off the leash after restrictions. It was an amazing first headline show, a sold out King Tut’s, despite not having yet released any music!

"There had been a lot of hype about us on social media and because we supported Baby Strange on tour, which was a great chance to get out there and gain confidence and grow as a band. Then we were flying and ready to go. I think doing an album is great but I have this mindset that it seems really difficult for bands to have longevity, so unless someone can take us to the top right away we wont release an album until then.

"So it will be singles in the meantime, and we plan to record an EP up the Highlands in August to showcase what kind of songs we can create and get our sound out there.”

To find out how The Big Day get on in the BBC Introducing Scottish Act of the Year, watch BBC Scotland at 9.50pm on Saturday, April 8.