Miss Writer Interviews Alex Spencer

14-year-old musician Alex Spencer from Manchester has already had some amazing feedback from some of the greats…


Liam Gallagher tweeted that Alex “sounded celestial”


Lady Gaga shared one of his performances on her Twitter feed


Rapper Aitch did a live stream of Alex’s performance when they met in Manchester


Hey Alex!! Thanks for taking part in our #MissWriter interview series for In Your Ears Music. Tell us about you – you burst onto the scene during lockdown, how did that come about?

I had been playing guitar for just over a year when lockdown arrived. In the previous spring, aged 11, I had started busking in Manchester and became quite popular, drawing some big crowds but that came to an end with the pandemic.


I had already started to gain an online following from my busking, so I put more of my music on social media, posting covers and live streams. I did a few Oasis covers (some with my brother) which were seen and commented on by Liam Gallagher. These vids were picked up by Oasis fan sites and I did live streams from home including an exclusive live stream for Oasis mania fan page, gaining me more online followers. I also had nice comments from The Coral, Bonehead, lottery winners, the Courteeners and Jake Bugg, for my covers of their songs which gave me motivation to keep playing!


As I had more time than ever during lockdown, I started writing my own music too and decided to go to the studio to record my debut track ‘Things just come and Go’ using money from my busking. I wasn’t really planning to release anything so early in my career, but as the song had a lockdown theme I thought it was the right time! It went really well, getting me some local press and airplays as far away as Australia, Hong Kong and Columbia, including a couple of spins on Radio X.


Are there any particular artists that influenced you when making music or that got you interested?

I suppose originally I was listening to a lot of my dad’s music, so I knew the likes of Oasis, Liam G,  Stone Roses, The Las, The Beatles, Arcade Fire and arctic Monkeys (to name a few) who all influenced me. In the past year or so I’ve become a big fan of The Lathums, Sam Fender and Jake Bugg but I do like all kinds of music and I’m still discovering so much new/older music.  Most of my school friends are into rap style music which I also listen to sometimes!


What do you enjoy the most about performing/busking?

I just love performing! It’s great to entertain the crowds!  I’ve played some decent gigs too, I’ve supported The Clone Roses, played at City Sq before Man City’s premier league game with Newcastle,  played at several festivals but the highlights were playing in front of 20000 people at the Manchester Arena and playing for the Man City players at their civic reception after they won the premier league!


I’ve recently put a backing band together after I was contacted by them to join me (they had seen me on social media). I’ve found a brilliant drummer, bass guitarist and lead guitarist who are all excellent musicians and we are all similar ages (school year 9 and 10) I’m really enjoying playing gigs with the band. We are still rehearsing but have already played 5 gigs together and are beginning to sound really good!


Who are your three fantasy festival headliners? 


The Beatles

The Lathums



Outside of music, what are your interests?

I like to play sports; I play football for a local team and have recently started playing cricket. I also go to the gym regularly. I’m very busy with schoolwork. I have my mock GCSEs this week. Sometimes it hard to balance all my activities- music, sport, school, and meeting friends!


There are loads of people on social media supporting the new music scene – what more can we do to support you? 

Yes, there are some wonderful and supportive people on social media. A special mention to Shiner Sam on twitter, she has been great, Sam’s been really supportive to me and many others. 


I suppose to help us artists, it helps to share our work on your socials and give us opportunities such as playing at The Sessions!


You’re playing The Sessions Live event in June in aid of Macmillan Cancer, what can we expect to see and hear from you? 

I’ll be playing a 20 min solo acoustic set; I’ll be playing around 10 songs-a mixture of originals and covers and I’m really looking forward to play for you!


What’s next for you? 

I have 2 singles ready to go but I am in no rush to record and release just yet! Firstly, I’m concentrating on rehearsals with the band and working on our set for our spring/summer gigs. I’ve booked the studio in July to demo some tracks. I’ve had interest from bigger promoters, record labels and management so let’s see where that’s goes!? I just want to keep playing more gigs, keep writing and improve my craft. Exciting times ahead!


Have you got your tickets for ‘The Sessions’ at Grub Manchester on Saturday 18th June? 


Tickets available here >>> https://www.fatsoma.com/e/unev6d97/the-sessions-in-manchester-in-aid-of-macmillan-cancer-support