My passion: Manic Street Preachers got me hooked on guitars

Leo Jones-Rowe: His band Fenton are releasing a single and playing a host of Leeds gigs.
Leo Jones-Rowe: His band Fenton are releasing a single and playing a host of Leeds gigs.
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Music is my true love and passion. However, that’s not always been the case, especially because Mariah Carey’s One Sweet Day was my first ever musical purchase!

Things started to improve when I bought the album This is My Truth Tell Me Yours by Manic Street Preachers. I made the chance purchase at a motorway service station on a school trip to London. I recall that it cost a whopping £15.99, which was virtually all of my spending money for the trip.

This album triggered my love affair with guitars. At Christmas the following year, I was given an electric guitar and amplifier kit. I practiced relentlessly and, within a few months, I had started my first band with a group of schoolmates. We were called Milk Float Joyrider and were pretty terrible.

All these years later and I am still at it. I now play in a three-piece indie rock band called Fenton with two of my best friends. This is the first time that I have been frontman of a band. I didn’t think I could sing and play guitar at the same time (and some may still argue that I can’t), but I love my new role. Fenton have put together a set list that caters for my penchant for massive, overblown, Jimi Hendrix-esque guitar solos.

We self-released our debut EP, Vanity, which was recorded at Eiger Studios in Leeds in summer 2014. To our amazement, the EP received very positive feedback and has received radio play on both sides of the Atlantic. Fenton are releasing a new single called Killer this month and have lined up a raft of gigs in and around Leeds. Apologies for the shameless plug, but check us out on Soundcloud and

I love going to gigs too. I must have been to hundreds over the last few years. I now mostly enjoy hearing new, under-the-radar local bands. My favourite gig moment remains having Justin Hawkins of The Darkness land on my head after a particularly spectacular and daring crowd-surfing manoeuvre at Nottingham Arena. That’s bizarre enough on its own. However, he later autographed my tram ticket after I missed the last tram home.

Anything really can happen in the world of music!