Hackney Live hosts east London's 'GM2Live Battle of the Bands'


A catchy song about a chicken shop has propelled a boy band to the top of the charts in a popular east London music competition.

Gas Tanks, from Bexley, won the GM2Live ‘Battle of the Bands Challenge’ with ‘Chicken Shop’ a song about going to their favourite chicken shop.

The young five-man-pop-rock-band triumphed in the online public vote and they were the judges’ choice too, at the Hackney Live streamed event, on Friday 2 October.

Lead singer, Gary Landick, 14, said: “It feels incredible really, after hearing some of the acts we thought we wouldn’t get through. This is amazing.”

Judging their performances and future potential were, James McKay from music production and development organisation Tomorrow’s Warriors; Mobo award-nominated artist, Kwabs and Vanessa Sylvester, from fast-rising duo Navan.

Seven bands from seven boroughs performed different musical styles from jazz to rock, including - Hackney’s, Josh Tenor and the Band. Josh recently won the youth category of Gigs, Mayor of London’s busking competition. Also performing were Tower Hamlets’ band, Mayday 74; Barking & Dagenham’s, Renoir; Redbridge’s, female-only band Paradox; Havering’s, Lost Ashore, and Funk In The Forest from Waltham Forest.

The live show was presented by Hackney-based hip-hop artist and DJ The Last Skeptik- who talked with all the young talent about their style, influences and what they hope to achieve in the future.

Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, Hackney Council
Hackney Live is an innovative way of giving young people a platform to go for their dreams of working in the music industry. Whether they want to be on the stage or behind the scenes, we can support them. We are able to offer them the chance to perform in a studio on our virtual stage, or learn valuable digital and production skills with the help of industry professionals.
Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, Hackney Council

Hackney Live is Hackney Council’s innovative platform for live arts and culture events. It gives emerging artists a chance to present their work to a wider online audience and develop new performance and production skills by working with industry professionals. They then have the opportunity to perform to the public through live-streaming.

A live chat forum ran throughout the stream in which people could interact with the show, ask questions and cast their vote for their favourite artist. The show saw 406 people cast a vote and 605 people use the chatroom to show support for the bands and get involved. There was also a chance to join the conversation via social media and 2,232 visits were made to @HackneyLive during the streaming, more than in previous events.

The G2MLive event was led by the council’s Hackney Music Service in partnership with the Gateway to Music boroughs. Hackney Music Service leads the music education hub for Hackney which brings a diverse range of music providers to deliver music tuition, holiday courses, music festivals, special projects and youth music voice to our schools and community.

Hackney Live also recently hosted a showcase of Hackney during The Big Music Project. You can watch this and other previous events - featuring dance, acrobatics and visual art at: The GM2Live show will be available on demand very soon.