Chart-toppers Keywest busk in city centre

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Keywest performing on Church Street. Pic by Amelia Eccleson-Davies © JMU Journalism

Keywest performing on Church Street. Pic by Amelia Eccleson-Davies © JMU Journalism

Multi-platinum selling band Keywest treated shoppers to a surprise performance on the streets of Liverpool city centre this week.

The five-piece group, comprised of three Irish and two English musicians, rose to fame after busking around the world. Their second album Joyland went to straight to number two on the official Irish chart in 2015 before climbing to the top spot.

The Dublin-based band stopped off at Liverpool on Thursday ahead of their sold-out Manchester show on October 25th.

A crowd of almost a hundred gathered to watch the musicians perform songs from their two award-winning albums and get copies of their CDs and merchandise signed.

YouTube: JMU Journalism

Lead guitarist, Jimi Lock, credits the band’s success with the busking they do over in Ireland. When asked why they appeared in Liverpool, he told JMU Journalism: “We’re just passing through. This is what we do, even though we don’t have a tour date in Liverpool, we just hopefully made some new fans and sold some more CDs today which keeps everything building.

Keywest signing CDs and merchandise after the performance. Pic by Amelia Eccleson-Davies © JMU Journalism

Keywest signing CDs and merchandise after the performance. Pic by Amelia Eccleson-Davies © JMU Journalism

“We do the big shows and we get all the press and TV stuff, but the day after we’re back on the street busking again. We just want to keep doing what we’re doing without it getting crazy.”

The band has continued to busk despite their increasing stardom in order to have total control over their music.

Jimi said: “We’ve seen that too many friends and bands have signed deals, and even though it looks great on paper, it never quite works out – they have to wait around for years. This way, at least we’re playing every day.”

Their UK tour kicks off in Birmingham on  October 20th before visiting London, Manchester and Newcastle, with more dates in Ireland towards the end of the year.