The AutistiX Bio Update February 2024
Happy New Year for 2024 to all our followers!
The AutistiX took a couple of weeks off over the holiday season but now we are back again, playing some of our own songs and favourite covers.
We are continuing to work on at least 10 new songs that are in the pipeline that we hope to finish and record in 2024. Just to entice our readers, some titles include” Straight and Narrow’, ‘Personal To People, ‘Enjoy Your Life’, etc
Our first event of the year will be our much loved annual gig at Hastings Beatles Day on Sunday 7th April 3pm on the main stage. Check the website for tickets. It’s an amazing one day festival with hundreds of acts on 3 stages from 12 noon til late so its brilliant value for money on top of getting to see our band performing favourite Beatles songs (including some ‘new’ ones that we haven’t played before). It’s at the White Rock Theatre, across the road from the Pier with miles of beach as far as the eye can see!
It seems like yesterday that our drummer, Saul, inspired a wonderful Netflix movie, I Used to Be Famous https://www.netflix.com/gb/title/81426667. It was released in September 2022 and even though over a year has passed we keep hearing from people who have seen the film, loved seeing Saul in the film hearing that he inspired the film and discovering The AutistiX by hearing our original son “I Am As I Am’ by checking out the film’s Spotify playlist https://open.spotify.com/album/67DaMPDypH8K0hTi8q7SZF and follow us on our social media sites! The film is about a drummer with autism meeting a washed-up boy band faded star, and they transform each other’s lives. The film reached Netflix’ No. 2 in the UK and No. 4 globally. Saul has cameos in the story’s drum circle, and the soundtrack features one his band’s newest songs I Am As I Am (here on YouTube). Our new EP of the same name was launched on a boisterous night at the Dublin Castle, Camden. The film was included in the 43 best films to watch over the Xmas holidays (and it’s never too late to watch the film, or see it again!) Furthermore, Netflix inhouse statistics showed that between Jan and June 2023 there were still on average 1 million views per month!
Here's some background on The AutistiX if you're a new follower: The AutistiX is the name of our unique rock band, because the young men who started the band (and named it) are autistic. It gives us a novel creative angle, while acknowledging the challenges of autism. We write and perform our own evocative songs, written from the heart. Our stage act is high-energy, as we love to bring our music to all audiences, and to inspire them with our belief in the talent and passion of all musicians; neurodiverse and neurotypical.
The AutistiX are: Jack Beaven-Duggan (acoustic and electric guitar plus backing vocals); Saul Zur-Szpiro (drums and backing vocals); Jim Connelly (lead singer); John Duggan (electric guitar/bass/vocals); and Michael Zur-Szpiro, (harmonica). We aim for the inclusion of musicians with disabilities, but we are not a disability band. We seek to lead and learn creative song writing and performing talent. Since our last bass player moved out of London we’ve played with a few guest bass players however we would really like to find a new bass player to join The AutistiX regularly and ideally become a full band member. We would also be pleased to welcome talented singers who would enjoy singing with our band on an occasional or regular basis so if you’re talented and interested, please get in touch with us through our social media channels!
The band has performed at other legendary UK venues (The Cavern Club, O2 Academy, The Barfly, Brighton Dome, Star & Garter, The Monarch, The White Rock, etc.). We appear at open air, community, and charity festivals: at one performance we brought Sir Tom Jones on stage and helped break their fundraising record! We can always bring in a sizeable crowd to our gigs.
Just before the pandemic, Rick Jupp (ex Elbow) presented a BBC Documentary about our band on the BBC The One Show, where we also played live. Rick has a son (also a drummer) who is autistic. Also, before Covid stopped normal lives, we played a couple of incredible gigs for Worldwide Autism Awareness Week, in Liverpool, at the ‘Cavern Club’; and at the Doors Club, in Constanta, Romania.
There are several more documentaries and articles about our outstanding band, and we have a global reach! Ask us for links. We have nearly reached 4,500 followers on Facebook and nearly 1,300 followers on ‘X’ (Twitter). Thanks to all who follow us! Please tell others about us and encourage them to follow us to reach more people so they can also enjoy our music and be inspired by The AutistiX!
Photo of our last gig of 2023 at J-Fest festival at Willowbrook Farm in Abingdon. From l to r: Rob Ellis (guest on bass), Jack Beaven-Duggan (electric guitar, backing vocals), John Duggan (electric guitar, vocals), Saul Zur-Szpiro (drums), Jim Connelly (lead vocals), Michael Zur-Szpiro (harmonica)