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Page last updated at 10:08 GMT, Thursday, 28 January 2010
Southampton Celtic folk band Coast a hit in Scotland

Southampton based Celtic folk band Coast are making a name for themselves north of the border.

They describe their music as having Celtic roots, despite only one of the members, bassist Adam Bowden, having Scottish ancestry.

Coast started life as a rock band.

Lead singer Paul Eastham said: "We played music with a Celtic influence, rather than being a Celtic band with rock influences."

"Our song writing is heavily influenced by a lot of Hebridean music."

Paul once lived in a small village in the Outer Hebrides, along with his brother, 34 year-old percussionist Chris Barnes.

Paul said: "I got into a lot of the traditional rock music from there".

They also cite the likes of Bruce Springsteen and Runrig as major influences.

Original line up

The original line up was brought together by the 28 year-old lead singer, who also co-wrote Duffy's debut EP Aimee Duffy.

Their demos received favourable reviews and in February 2008, Coast released their first single "The Great Crowd".

But due to other commitments, some of the original band members were unable to commit to the project.

The current line up is Paul Eastham on vocals and keyboards, Chris Barnes on percussion together with lead guitarist and professional welder Chris Lappage, 36.

Piano Tuner Adam Bowden, 43 plays bass guitar, 29 year-old builder Alec Stone on acoustic guitar and drummer Mark Mongam who is a quantity surveyor.

Worldwide fan base

They boast a fan base from around the world, with a large following in Germany and Scotland.

"We have a lot more fans in Scotland than we do in England" Paul admitted as they played an acoustic set on BBC Radio Solent's Sally on Saturday show.

"There are also a lot of fans in Denmark and Germany".

It is a fan base that the band find extraordinary.

"We have never played or advertised in Germany" Paul said. "But [similar] bands such as Big Country are already established there".

The six-piece are currently signed to a small independent label based in Anglesea. They launched their debut album at Talking Heads in Southampton, a gig which sold out within three weeks of tickets going on sale.

Their tour schedule regularly takes them to a number of venues across Hampshire as well as north of the border. Audience participation is a part of Coast's live shows.

Paul said: "We like to get the audience involved".

In January 2010, they played Scotland's largest Celtic festival, Celtic Connections in Glasgow - for the first time.

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