Over five years ago if you told Tom Harte, frontman of Northern Irish ballbusters Trucker Diablo, that they would be going into 2014 on the back of appearances at some of the UK’s biggest festivals, I’m sure he would get you to repeat yourself. Nevertheless, this is reality. Trucker’s rise from playing in practice spaces to playing in front of thousands of people proves that it is possible if you work hard and continue your pursuit of success.
“There is no comparison really; the excitement of playing big stages to thousands is slightly different to playing small clubs”, Tom explains. “The shows were steadily getting bigger and better, then walking out on the big stage is just like everything you dreamed when you were sitting in your bedroom as a fifteen year old”.
Definitely the stuff that dreams are made of and great things come to those who persist and they usually come in numbers. Some of you may already know of one of Trucker’s big claims to fame is having their song “Drink Beer, Destroy” feature in the popular Xbox game Rock Band 3. “The game thing blows my mind as I am a gamer myself. There are videos of people playing the song on the game and its awesome to see. It’s hard not to feel anything but pride when seeing the things we have achieved.”
Drink Beer Destroy also have featured on music channels across the country, featuring on Scuzz and Kerrang! and has travelled as far wide as MTV Australia. “Its kinda really strange and amazing at the same time” Tom describes. “All the hard work that you put in really pays off with the videos and getting them out there to new audiences.” This has lead to some interesting messages from some of Trucker’s most committed fans also, “we had a message from a fan recently who said they were going to get the Trucker logo tattooed on their arm and he wanted us to sign his arm so he could get our signatures tattooed as well. That was pretty amazing.” We’re sure he will have to join the queue.
Classic Rock Magazine recently described Trucker Diablo with “It’s as if the spirits of Thin Lizzy, Cheap Trick and Rose Tattoo have been newly pickled in a cheap whiskey and strapped to a runaway freight train. Only Louder”. One thing is for sure – I couldn’t have described them better myself. Tom states his gratitude for the nice words and believes it can only give you more confidence. “It’s really amazing to read these quotes. It reinforces the gut feeling you have when you write the songs that there is something special in what you are doing. It builds your confidence and really give you a lot of kudos on the scene.”
I feel it’s important to note that Trucker Diablo have supported some of the biggest bands out there such as Black Stone Cherry, Thin Lizzy and global rockstars Foo Fighters and have played at Download Festival as well as Belfast’s own Tennents Vital. With years of experience playing with local bands around Northern Ireland, I asked how they could possibly prepare of some of the biggest shows of their lives. “Its normally a mix of excitement and trepidation. You are always conscious of putting in the best show you can and just really excited to get on stage.” Still, Trucker Diablo stay true to their roots and when asked their favourite venue in Northern Ireland, Trucker Tom replied with “The Diamond Rock Club, it never feels like just a gig. It’s like having a big house party with all your friends. It’s a unique and special place and we should be very proud of it.”
Trucker Diablo have gone a long way since headlining our Best Served Local showcase in Auntie Annies back in 2010 and are easily one of Northern Ireland’s best bands. 2014 will be another big year as the truck keeps on rolling with plans of a full UK and European tour but with some diamond-shaped secrets still kept under wraps, we can’t wait to find out more!
Trucker Diablo released their latest album “Songs of Iron” in May 2013.
Click here to be taken to their website! (This opens a new window).