‘This was something we could do to keep people going during a difficult time’

Milk frontman Grant Jones talks about his wild past on Womanby Street and how lockdown has birthed The Indie Superstore

Grant with his business face on

Grant Jones, front man for the psychedelic band Milk, has taken his skills as a music promoter and channeled them into being a market man extraordinaire. 

Donning a roller neck, flares and backwards leather cap, this man has something to say to the world and couldn’t care less how you take it. Today he seems calm and considered as he briefly explains his involvement in the music scene, his personality paradox and launching a business in a pandemic.

Howling at The Moon

Grant says he cut his teeth through his time on Womanby Street, where he was a raucous good-times instigator. These moments lure a smirk to the surface, as he regales playing gigs in the band Howl, the origins of the current band Milk and running The Moon bar.

“It was the freak show,” he proudly declares. “The most welcoming, free, freakshow in the fucking world.” 

This precious time in Womanby Street eventually led to the formation of Milk. This three-piece band is a celebration of all things psychedelic rock and roll. Their manifesto is to promote joy, disgust, and an all round sense of chaos, says the front man. 

“Milk is all about hard sweaty good times,” he says.

There are two sides to this man, something he is acutely aware of and calls the “Personality paradox.” 

It is important to pursue the extremes within, he explains, as they enable you to build and pinpoint your core values and use them as a grounding point.

 “One moment you might be 100% in for grass roots venues, another for the degradation of society,” he says. “But without this exploration you are just wandering around a field without coordinates.”

Covid-19 and the Indie Superstore

This pursuit of extremes has slowed down. Perhaps Grant has found his core, or maybe he’s just a bit tired…

Luckily for Cardiff, degradation is not on the cards right now and Grant teamed up with Steve Bines to launch The Indie Superstore at the start of the Covid-19 saga. 

Gathering local food trucks, craft makers, vintage garments and craft beer, the open air market based at Corporation Yard in Canton has been a roaring success. 

“Lockdown was a bit of a blessing for us. We knew this was something we could do to keep people going during a difficult time,” says Grant.

The biggest problem, he says, was a lack of government confirmation on what was and wasn’t deemed essential. 

“A candle is essential if your electricity goes, gin is essential if you’ve had a rough day and it’s winter, so socks are definitely essential right?” Grant cheekily suggests with a raised brow.

In the end things have lined up nicely and the market not only thrived in Canton but also opened in Lakeside at the end of November.

Having now ridden the “Wave of emotions” and the worrying periods of uncertainty, The Indie Superstore has established itself as a firm locals favourite.

“If I was going to put a level on it and say whether things have been good or bad, I would say  all positive – more lockdown please,” he says half joking.

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