"We absolutely love touring, but it definitely does take a toll on us." - When Rivers Meet

Posted: May 22, 2024
We definitely think about expectations that the fans have from us, this was our third headline tour, and we always aim to work on a different area of the show to improve each time.

Photo by: Laurence Harvey

When I interviewed “When Rivers Meet” back in September of 2023, I knew they would go on to make a huge impact on the music industry. I was stoked to get the opportunity to interview them. They are an exciting duo to see perform live. You can tell that they are enjoy playing before a live audience.

The previous interview quoted them as saying "Transparency is important. We like to keep our fans in the loop with everything we do. They are part of our journey." – When Rivers Meet.

The interview was based upon my own experience at a live concert. I thought the way the artist engaged the crowd was compelling. It was worth the amount paid per ticket, just to see the performance. The music itself, was icing on the cake.

During the interview, I asked them the following:

Guitar Thrills: Do you believe you would be as successful without fan engagement?

When Rivers Meet: Definitely, not. Power of the people is the thing when you’re independent. We don’t have some big engine room of a label powering its way through. We need our fans and If people know you, like what you’re doing, then they will back you. Especially nowadays, more than ever. We are so great full to have such great fans.

I left the interview knowing that WRM were headed down a successful path. There was no deed for this husband-and-wife team, to worry about longevity. They have the music industry wrapped around their finger. Undoubtedly, it is due to their knowledge. Along with that wisdom came strength and a huge demand for their music.


Guitar Thrills: Before chatting with WRM today. I thought about several subjects to cover. However, the interview would encompass the entire June issue of Guitar Thrills Magazine. This is how intriguing this team is. However, I thought it best to just cover some of the activities that they are engaging in since our last conversation.

Guitar Thrills: Well, thank you very much for taking the time to interview with me. I was excited to find out what you both have been up to since we last chatted. I understand that you have both just ended the “Aces are High Tour”.

How do you prepare mentally for the rigors of a tour like that?

WRM: We absolutely love touring, and it underpins the reason why we’re in the music industry, we both need to preform we absolutely love it, but it definitely does take a toll on us. It’s crazy the amount of preparation before the tour kicks off and during the tour because we are independent, and we self-manage there is a lot involved but we wouldn’t have it any other way we like to know and be involved in every aspect of the tour. Mentally we do a lot of preparation beforehand there is definitely an added pressure for headline shows because people have bought tickets to see us and that is something that is really important to us and we value people invest their time and money to on us. With the headline tour dates we take time beforehand to prepare using different techniques like havening techniques and making sure we’ve got the right energy to take onto stage, it is so easy to be distracted by the logistics of touring and not be present when you’re on stage so we make sure we focus beforehand.

Guitar Thrills: Did it measure up the success of tours you had previously?

WRM: Definitely, each tour has felt very different. The first tour was such a huge learning curve for us, it was our very first UK headline tour, so there was so many things to learn. Then going into our second tour we felt like we found our feet a little more, and then this third tour we’ve felt a lot more comfortable than ever on stage and behind the scenes, the audiences (Rapids) have been amazing and most of the shows sold out, so we are feeling very grateful.

Guitar Thrills: Performing as a husband-and-wife duo, does it make it difficult to tour together? What type of challenges have you had to overcome?

WRM: For us, being together makes it a lot easier, as we always have that unwavering support, and we wouldn’t want it any other way. We always have a sense of having each other’s back, so we are very much a team.

Guitar Thrills: Do you receive the same kind of energy from your fans at each venue?

WRM: Each area definitely has its own energy, but what we’ve found is that it’s about what energy we take on to stage, as that then translates onto the audience. We are always there and ready to do our thing, and in that way, everyone is going to be on the same journey as us throughout the show.

Guitar Thrills: What songs do you normally cover? Is it just the songs that you are promoting form your latest album, or it a combination?

WRM: This is the first tour where it has been an album tour, previously we already had records out. So, this time it was great to be able to tour a whole brand new album, and then we selected some of our back catalogue that we’d not played out before and a few favorites to throw in as well. So, it feels amazing, even though we’ve only been releasing music properly since 2019 to have such a big back catalogue to pull from.  

Guitar Thrills: Do you think about the expectations that your fans have, before going on tour? Do you accommodate your audience based upon the location of the tour?

WRM: We definitely think about expectations that the fans have from us, this was our third headline tour, and we always aim to work on a different area of the show to improve each time. We don’t change the set to accommodate the audience we put together what we believe to be the best show, but there is definitely merit to changing up a set and reading an audience. When it is a headline tour it feels very much like the show should be put together as a whole show rather than just a set of songs, but during festival season we can really play what we feel is right on the night and go with the flow….

Guitar Thrills: I like to hear about your stage plot. What is involved in setting up each stage set, does it different at all?

WRM: It definitely depends on the size of the venue and the size of the stage; we use IEMs (Inner Ear Monitoring) not that we have a quiet stage because we do like to have some beef from monitors and Amps. It’s always an ever evolving journey when it comes to tech. 

Guitar Thrills: Who are some of the members of your band and what instrument do they perform with?

WRM: We have been very lucky to have our producer play bass at the live shows at the moment. He also played keys and guitar (and surprised us with drums one night!) We also have James Fox on drums/ keys/guitar we are very lucky to have two multi-instrumentalists in our band which gives us a lot of options when creating a set.

Guitar Thrills: Now, that you the tour is over, do you take time off, or are you back in the studio?

WRM: We’re heading into the studio for the whole month of June to record our fourth studio album and we’re really excited about it. We’re feeling like this is going to take a bit of a different musical direction from before, and that is one of the wonders of being an independent band,  we get to choose exactly what we want to do creatively and for us recording an album isn’t about being fixed creatively,  it’s about going with the flow of where you are in the moment, and accepting it’s all part of a musical journey. 

Guitar Thrills: Do you have any specific songs that you have in mind? Something that you didn’t get a chance to complete before the last release.

WRM: We definitely never look back when it comes to song writing we find it more difficult to look back and change songs that we have written previously than to move forward and write new ones and for us if it wasn’t good enough to make the last record then it’s definitely not going to go on next one.

Guitar Thrills: Where was you favorite venue that you performed at on tour? And why?

WRM: Aaron: For me it was definitely Norwich at Epic Studios it’s a hometown show for me, I was born in Norfolk and had a lot of family and friends at the show. The energy was amazing, and we absolutely loved the venue.

Grace: The highlight for me was the last night in London it was such an incredible energy that night and knowing that it was the last night of the tour made it even more special. 

Guitar Thrills: Do you ever experience negativity from your audience? How do you go about handling it?

WRM: We are very lucky to have an incredibly supportive fane base it is very easy to fall into a trap about what the audience are thinking of the song, of the show and the best thing for us is just to remain present and enjoy the music that we’ve created. So, we try not to go down that rabbit hole of thought process, it is more of an issue online because there will also be the odd negative comment online, but we take the good with the bad and it is so easy to focus on that one negative comment we do our best to stay focused on being creative and staying positive.  

Guitar Thrills: How do you stay fit on the road? Especially with a tight schedule, and a vigorous routine?

WRM: Would probably be an exaggeration to say we remain fit on the road! One thing is for us we do try and make sure we eat well, luckily now there’s lots of places we stop at have good food. For us we don’t have much of an appetite on the road as we are always kinda buzzing so we always come back slightly slimmer which is always a plus.

Guitar Thrills: I know that to a degree you must be exhausted. That is why I am excited that you took the time to answer my questions. I look forward to publishing it in the June issue of Guitar Thrills Magazine. We must schedule another interview before your next project. How does that sound?

WRM: That would be awesome, we really appreciate you featuring us in the magazine, and we look forward to speaking to you soon.

Guitar Thrills: Awesome. Thanks again for joining me. I look forward to following your continued level of excellence. We will always support your projects, so keep us informed when possible.

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