Not many brands have the longevity, heritage and conscientiously fresh vision that Barbour has cultivated over the past 125 years. Known for creating an unparalleled reputation for clothing that’s durable, functional and timeless – it seems to be the antithesis of fast fashion.
Barbour International has joined up with James McVey from The Vamps to host a series of live-recorded sessions featuring emerging talent who embody the link between music and style. James has a long-standing tie to Barbour, “I think my first kind of comings in with Barbour would be seeing people wearing it on walks in the countryside (as a boy),” he goes on to say “I worked this job… to save up and I got my first Barbour jacket years ago, which I still have actually now. I still somehow fit into it! I think growing up in the countryside, that’s what Barbour is to me- it’s a real heritage brand. It’s good quality; you know you can walk out, go out places, get it wet and it seems to just last and get better with age.”
Joining James for the session is Callum Beattie, a Scottish native who creates authentic and deeply personal music. During his intimate session, Callum sang his newest release, Without You, a heartfelt track about the aftermath of a breakup. Describing his music, Callum says, “I’d like people to know that I write about real things, that all my songs are autobiographical – they’ve all got deeper meanings.”
The Barbour International Sessions have created a dynamic opportunity to bring together talented promising musicians who really resonate with the ideals of bringing together genuine passion and authenticity to their music. Callum, who is due to release his long-anticipated debut-album later this year, is very much aligned with Barbour International’s message, “I think music and fashion have always tied together really well. When a brand like Barbour International comes and offers to help up-and-coming artists like myself you’ve got to jump at it. It’s a great brand to be associated with, and stylistically I feel it suits my music really well.”
It was obvious why Barbour International had connected with Callum for the sessions as soon as he took the stage. He was effortlessly edgy, quietly confident and gave off an unabashed sincerity when speaking with him. Many of his fans appreciate his music because of how totally relatable it is. He describes his new single Without You by saying “It’s a song about breaking up and about how one day you’ll feel like the world is off your shoulders and then the next day you feel pretty crap about things, and it’s that juxtaposition. I tried to make the lyrics quite humorous, so it wasn’t so sad. ‘I’m a foot without a shoe, without you’.”
When we sat down with James in an effort to understand his role in the sessions and how he has been able to relate to the new musicians, he expressed “All the people that I’ve interviewed for the Summer Sessions, it sounds strange saying it, but to me, I look up to them because they’re great songwriters that have been doing it for years and years … so I have that respect as a songwriter. I don’t feel like I can give them advice, as such, but I think to just stick to what they do because what they do is so great. To have that genuine passion for music is something that you can’t force or buy.”
It’s that very passion for music that’s clearly evident when we spoke to James about his recent tour and releasing his new EP, Missing You, “In the start [of the tour], one or two people could sing along, but by the end everyone could sing along to them all. It’s like the EP grew as the tour went on. I think it’s quite nerve wracking releasing a song not knowing how fans are going to take it, but it seems be received quite well.” This has been an exciting EP to release, as The Vamps have written and produced it entirely themselves. The album is more “instrument driven” and has a “slightly more personal and believable” vibe.
Both James and Callum were dressed in new pieces from the Men’s Barbour International Pre-Autumn Winter 19 Collection, releasing in July. The new collection really focuses on blending casual style and practicality. James wore a gorgeous bright short sleeve crew neck tee in Race Red. A few of their key pieces from this collection, like James’ tee, introduce rich colours whilst always maintaining Barbour’s focus on comfort, versatility, and a fresh vision.