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Dan's delight to be back on the road

PUBLISHED: 11:42 17 October 2008 | UPDATED: 21:32 05 July 2010

Dan Hawkins performs with the Stone Gods in Gorleston later this month. Picture: Angela Sharpe

Dan Hawkins performs with the Stone Gods in Gorleston later this month. Picture: Angela Sharpe

LOWESTOFT rocker Dan Hawkins has played at some of the biggest venues in the country, but later this month he moves another step closer to performing in his home town when his latest band play at the Ocean Rooms in Gorleston.

LOWESTOFT rocker Dan Hawkins has played at some of the biggest venues in the country, but later this month he moves another step closer to performing in his home town when his latest band play at the Ocean Rooms in Gorleston.

The former Kirkley High School student first shot to fame in 2003 alongside his brother Justin and close school-friend Ed Graham. Five years on, The Darkness is just a distant memory to Dan as he co-runs a successful recording studio and prepares to tour the UK once more with his band the Stone Gods.

The Darkness were Suffolk's most successful ever rock band but when Justin quit in October 2006, Dan wasn't prepared to stop performing. Soon he and band mates Ed Graham and Richie Edwards had been joined by Toby MacFarlaine, and they had formed the Stone Gods.

Together they toured the UK, but in July it was announced that Ed had left the band due to health problems. The band had to cancel a couple of performances, but managed to recruit ex-Bush drummer Robin Goodridge for the rest of their tour.

“He did a great job,” said Dan. “It was so last minute we had to cancel two dates and only had two days to rehearse before playing in front of thousands at The Download Festival. But he has played massive gigs before with Bush, so didn't seem remotely nervous.”

Former Stereophonics drummer Stuart Cable also filled in for one performance, but earlier this month it was announced that Robin would be Ed's permanent replacement and the band will soon be on the road again as they tour the country in support of Australian rock band Airbourne.

“I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to it; I've been going crazy as I haven't played for a while,” said Dan.

The tour will see the band play across the UK in November, including at the UEA in Norwich, but before that they will treat their local fans to an extended set at The Ocean Rooms in Gorleston on October 30.

“Gorleston is one of the many places I've lived in and around Norfolk and Suffolk,” said Dan. “I'm gradually edging closer to Lowestoft, maybe we'll be able to warm up in Lowestoft next time.”

On October 27 the band release Don't Drink The Water, the second single from their album Silver Spoons and Broken Bones, which was recorded at Dan's studio Leeders Farm in Spooner Row.

The studio, which Dan runs together with producer Nick Brine has proved a big hit, with the Arctic Monkeys and KT Tunstall amongst the artists to have used their facility.

“It always been a dream of mine to have a recording studio and the first year couldn't have gone any better,” said Dan.

So with a UK tour on the horizon, a busy recording studio, talk of another support tour in December and writing already underway on new material for the Stone Gods, Dan is certainly not short of work.

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