Hayman, Watkins, Trout and Lee
present their debut album 'Hayman, Watkins, Trout and Lee'
released 6th May 2008 on Fortuna POP! via Cargo and iTunes (FPOP79)
An extra exclusive track 'Hotter Than Mojave' is available on a compilation album from Stove Records.

Sly and the Family Stone, That’s Why She Left Me (Why She Came Back), Tecumseh Valley, Buckdancer’s Choice, Fine Young Cannibals, Hesitation Blues, Jam-Eater Blues, Napoleon Crossing the Rhine, Loretta, I Should Have Told Her, Beulah Crossing the Marshes, High Blood Pressure, Dirty Tube Train, Bethnal Green
Download the new double A-side MP3 single by HWTL for free
Press Release for 'Hayman, Watkins, Trout and Lee'

Hayman, Watkins, Trout and Lee are a country, bluegrass band from East London. They don’t sing in American accents and their songs feature tube trains, Bethnal Green, sick days, flat lemonade and unmade beds. HWTL perform weary singalongs; fragile and flawed ballads that wipe a tear and force you to smile.

Darren Hayman (ex Hefner) formed the band with Dave Watkins, in 2005, as an antidote to their ‘career’ bands. The idea was that this would be a band with as little ego as possible, with everybody taking vocals, submitting material, leaving and arriving as they wished. The group is as much about playing around Darren’s kitchen table as it is playing on any stage.

Current Line up; Darren, Dan, Dave T and Dave W

In fact the original idea was even to avoid the notion of doing records. However when Dave Tattersall (The Wave Pictures) joined in 2007 with a whole repertoire of blues and country songs, as well as his own fantastic ballads, it became obvious that they had something worth preserving.

In the spirit of Big Pink, the Basement Tapes and the first McCartney album, it was decided to record the album in two days at Darren’s house, with a bunch of battered microphones, a fresh pot of tea, and some fruit cake. The resulting recordings feature seven band originals (four written by Darren and two by David Tattersall) alongside covers of songs by Townes Van Zandt and The Mountain Goats and smattering of traditional tunes.

Hayman, Watkins, Trout and Lee let you peer though the cracks of their kitchen, and hit nearly all the right notes in the process. Let them give you a warm handshake.

The album will be available to buy from Fortuna POP! via Cargo and iTunes and our own shop and our download shop.

Look out for lots of 2008 shows too in our shows section.

Hear more songs and see an excellent live video at...

A Brief History by Darren Hayman

I knew Dave Watkins because his and my wife were friends. We were talking at a dinner party in 2005 when Alexander Church said he'd always wanted to be in a bluegrass band. Unfortunately Alexander can't play an instrument so me and Dave stole his idea.

Original line up 2005

Dave started to learn the banjo and I asked John Lee (Hefner guitar tech and French live drummer) if he wanted to start a bluegrass band. He replied; 'Yes! What's Bluegrass?'. I asked Simon Trought, who was then in Tompaulin, to join on the basis that he owned a mandolin.

The idea of the band for me was to have a band where I wasn't in charge and to have other people write and sing. I also wanted to play bass, as it's the only instrument I'm half good at.

We learnt a lot of covers and played some raucously inept shows. A lot of them at the What's Cooking Night in Leytonstone.

A video for 'Beulah Crossing the Marshes' more videos at our myspace

This line up lasted about a year and a bit before John Lee moved to France and we floundered for some time whilst we tried to find a replacement. The problem being that we not only wanted a good guitarist but someone who could write and sing. Simon suggested David Tattersall, singer and guitarist with the Wave Pictures. Dave joined but then a few weeks later Simon left (though this line up is preserved on a split single we recorded for Truck Records).

I asked Dan Mayfield (who I'd been playing with in Ellis Island Sound) and immediately the band changed. Not only did we now have three excellent musician in Dave, David and Dan (I do alright on bass but I don't have to solo) but Dan and Dave T also bought with them a desire to make the band a little more serious and for us to do more ballads.

Due to all of us having busy lives and solo music projects we never seem quite sure how long the band will continue for. With that in mind we decided to spend a weekend recording the band for posterity. We sent it to Sean at Fortuna POP!, he said he'd put it out!

 An advert for our new album.