New Blood: Rob Lynch

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Although the line-ups may have changed and the genres have mutated over the years, the Vans Warped Tour has remained a staple in every rock, punk and hardcore fan’s gig calendars. None more so than Rob Lynch, who spent his teens dreaming of playing the legendary festival. Incredibly, last summer, he found himself on the road for almost two months, playing on every single date from Houston to Denver and practically everywhere in between.

“To play Warped is like the Holy Grail for anyone who’s grown up listening to that sort of music,” says Rob. “It was on my bucket list, so it was such an honour to have my name associated with that tour. It was a pretty wild summer and a dream come true.”

Hailing from Stamford in Lincolnshire, the idea of playing open-air festivals in the scorching US heat were a long way off. Rob got a guitar for his 18th birthday from his parents and, what was meant to be a bit of fun soon blossomed into a full-on love affair.

While listening to the likes of Elliott Smith, Dashboard Confessional and Death Cab For Cutie, as well as seeing a fresh-faced Frank Turner supporting Get Cape Wear Cape Fly in a 100-capacity pub, Rob soon started writing and playing his own songs under the moniker Lost On Campus.

“I put out three EPs as Lost on Campus,” explains Rob. “Well, only two officially – I like to think people don’t remember the first one. That, to me, was my first band. The songs got a bit better and I started to use my own name so people didn’t get confused thinking it was a pop punk band or something. None of those songs are really kicking around now, but you never know, there could be a 10-year anniversary tour for the people who cared back then. It would be a really intimate show just for my mum.”

Last year, Rob released his debut album, All These Nights In Bars Will Somehow Save My Soul. As well as winning over fans on Warped Tour, Rob has been taking his songs all over the globe. Be it intimate shows here in the UK, or performing his first ever show with a full band to a crowd of 15,000 in Germany, Rob’s music has been connecting with people on a deeply personal level. It comes down to penchant for writing and playing with his heart on his sleeve; earnest songs that tackle the ups and downs of life head on and focuses on the positives rather than the negative. Even when tackling such difficult topics as his father passing away on songs like Whiskey and Some Nights, Rob remains completely open with his fans, something that in turn has helped them through the hard times.

“I find it quite therapeutic,” says the singer-songwriter. “I don’t find it awkward talking about those things on stage because I think it helps explain where the music is coming from. The response it gets from people after a show or online is quite interesting. I get messages from people saying how it helps them, or how they’ve been touched by a song because it relates to something that’s happened to them in their lives. They’re songs I wrote from an almost selfish point of view, to get out sadness or demons. The fact that that can help out somebody else, that’s a really beautiful thing.”

“I find it quite therapeutic,” says the singer-songwriter. “I don’t find it awkward talking about those things on stage because I think it helps explain where the music is coming from. The response it gets from people after a show or online is quite interesting. I get messages from people saying how it helps them, or how they’ve been touched by a song because it relates to something that’s happened to them in their lives. They’re songs I wrote from an almost selfish point of view, to get out sadness or demons. The fact that that can help out somebody else, that’s a really beautiful thing.”

Rob heads out on tour this week in the UK. Check out his Facebook page for more details.