MIKE GRIFFITHS (Lead Guitar & Vocals)
When did you join HIMALAYAS?
Joe, James and I started HIMALAYAS around 2015 and Louis joined not longer after although Joe and I had been in bands together for a few years before we formed Himalayas. I met Joe in high school first and we knew James from the year above as he was also in bands in high school.
I studied law at Uni for a couple of years, around the same time the band started. The band was always the first priority.
Music is definitely my biggest interested but I also enjoy reading, watching films and building my secret evil volcanic lair!
I mainly follow cricket and rugby and have loved both for as long as I can remember. I never got into playing cricket for a team but I played a bit with my dad and some friends when I was younger. I played for a rugby team throughout most of primary and high school but I probably should have stuck to guitar.
Biggest musical influence
The Beatles have always been my biggest influence but I’d have to mention Nick Cave, Manic Street Preachers and Prince, among many others.
Artists such as Queens of the Stone Age, Arctic Monkeys, David Bowie and Iggy Pop have had a large influence on Himalayas.
I worked in a call centre before joining the band. I can remember wanted to be a palaeontologist for a bit when I was nine because who doesn’t love dinosaurs? But otherwise it’s always been music.
Living & dead person(s) you most admire and why?
Probably have to go with Paul McCartney for the living person as not only has he written some of the greatest songs ever he’s an incredibly versatile musician and has continued to learn and grow throughout his career. Sadly missed would be Prince for similar reasons.
Top 3 live bands or live events?
I recently saw Tool in Birmingham and it was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever experienced musical or otherwise. The standard of musicianship is otherworldly and the whole gig was so loud and intense. Felt like I’d been beaten up the following day, brilliant.
Paul McCartney: I’ve seen Paul McCartney twice and as a life long Beatles fan it was always going to be an amazing gig. He played for about three hours without a break, couldn’t ask for a better gig.
Iggy Pop: We somehow managed to get side of stage to watch Iggy Pop at Mad Cool festival which really felt like it was once in a lifetime. He mainly played stuff from Lust for Life and The Idiot with some Stooges mixed in all accompanied by a brass section, awesome show.
HIMALAYAS’ Top 3 gigs and why?
Playing the Festival Republic stage at Reading Festival was definitely a highlight. We used to go to Reading as fans and to play to a packed out stage where we’d watched some of our favourite bands a couple of years before was amazing. We also played SXSW in 2018 which was a great experience all round, all of the shows were fun but the first one on the BBC Introducing stage really went off.
Playing Mad Cool Festival in Madrid was also brilliant, probably my favourite festival I’ve ever been to and the show went really well despite playing in 40 degree heat.