Every fledgling band needs their own rehearsal space the school music room or the drummer's bedroom but Hunter & The Bear ended up in a soundproofed shipping container in a London car park, a nice touch for a band that are certainly going places. Starting out as a duo, long-time friends Jimmy Hunter (lead guitar/mandolin) and Will Irvine (guitar/lead vocals and nicknamed The Bear at school, so work out the origins of their unusual band name yourselves) ended up at the same university in Newcastle writing songs together before heading south to London in 2012 in pursuit of gigs.
Their hard work and enthusiastic approaching to playing live, anywhere and anytime, led to the addition of drummer Gareth Thompson, who they spotted playing at Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club and the rhythm section was completed in 2014 with the addition of bassist Chris Clark, a timely move as they were given the opportunity to support Eric Clapton on his UK arena tour that same summer as well as performing at Scotland's T In The Park and Belladrum Tartan Heart festivals.
The band's influences are rich and varied, which is reflected in their music. Irvine and Hunter's Scottish upbringings lent exposure to traditional music but a love of classic rock bands like Lynyrd Skynryd and The Band shines through in both song-writing and performance a powerful blend of folk, rock and country, with strong vocal harmonies and soaring guitar lines.