Leslie grew up in Belfast in the 70's, when it was the norm to have soldiers patrolling the streets and to be searched by a heavily armed police force just to go shopping downtown.
He turned to music to stay out of trouble and started performing solo shows in many of the city’s bars. He was privileged enough to open for many of his idols over that time. In 1994 The Rocket Soul Choir was formed, growing a following and releasing two albums on Northern Ireland’s, Immortal Recordings label - 1999’s Geek Love and 2001’s The Written Lie. This version of the band toured Ireland, the UK and Scandinavia.
On a solo trip through the Midwest back in 1997 he met Jason Wahl and Michael Jorgensen from the band Homo Jenkins and they started to perform together off and on as the RSC. This was a major factor in Leslie’s decision to emigrate in 2004 and now considers Minneapolis to be his home.
During the years since emigrating, Leslie became the principal songwriter, guitarist and singer for bands like A Little Of The Ready and the Celtic folk band, Hounds Of Finn. Jason and Michael meanwhile went on to join Minnesota punk band, The Skullcranes, but in October 2014 Jason and Leslie started to talk again about the RSC. Jason suggested Minneapolis music scene stalwart, Pete Boulger, who had been introduced earlier while drumming for Church Of Cash. Pete had been in a ton of great Minneapolis bands over the years; Dander, The Grande Machine and along with Jason, Sawbones.
The trio have just released a 5 track 12" vinyl EP, Kidder's Son, on the Loud Folk label.
Pulled together from an expanding catalogue of songs from Leslie, the tracks revolve around fearlessness and faith (Blindly Moving Anyway), hope for the future and overcoming past mistakes (Kidder's Son), day old love (Long Line Of Fools), spirituality (Kind Of A Love Song) and coping with rejection (Qualified). It's a hopeful and forceful record. Broken apart, production feels sparse, but it's all the more punchy for it.
Kidder's Son is available in Twin Cities record stores as of January 2017.