Band heads for big time

IN 1964, The Beatles were welcomed to Australia by hordes of screaming and crying female fans.

Now western Sydney’s teen band sensation, 5 Seconds of Summer (5SOS), is recreating those memorable moments with its own packs of hysterical admirers.

But this young band isn’t all about fringes, cool dance moves or being a popular gossip topic among teenage girls: they are making waves in the music charts as well as on social media outlets with their pop-rock hits.

And music critics suggest they may be the next top act to get on the boy band wagon.

The band’s guitarist, Quakers Hill local Michael Clifford, 17, said the group was far from being labelled a boy band.

‘‘I think that tag of ‘boy band’ kind of makes you think that we don’t write our own music and we have the music written for us, and that we don’t play instruments which we do,’’ Clifford said.

‘‘I think it’s a process that we have to grow through to try and gain credibility and get out of that tag.’’

The band formed over a year ago when Luke Hemmings, 16, began posting videos of himself on YouTube doing covers of popular songs.

Clifford and Calum Hood, 16, soon joined their friend in his online performance.

They were then offered a gig at the Annandale Hotel and they found their drummer, Ashton Irwin, 18, via Facebook just a week before the show.

‘‘We just started out playing covers on YouTube and then it’s kind of become a career,’’ Clifford said.

‘‘We didn’t really expect it to happen like that.’’

By June, the band was booked for its first tour which had sold out within two nights in three capitals.

As well, they’ve clocked over 3 million views on YouTube and over 59,000 fans on Facebook.

In December, the boys packed their bags and moved to London to see if they could hit the big time.

They have been working on their first album with well established songwriters including band members from McFly, Steve Robson and Jamie Scott.

‘‘I think we all kind of thought about it and we thought it was the best choice for us and the direction that we wanted to head,’’ Clifford said.

‘‘We thought that we suited that type of work — not to mention that we want to make it internationally.’’

Clifford said the sudden rise in fame has not altered their personalities.

‘‘From the start of the year we were like, ‘‘yeah, man, we are four dudes who want to be in a band’’.’’

‘‘We don’t really classify ourselves as famous.’’

‘‘We are still the same guys as we were.

‘‘It’s coping with the work side of things which is the hardest.

The story Band heads for big time first appeared on Blacktown Sun.

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