When you think of Prime Circle, it’s most likely that one of the first thoughts that comes to mind is the band’s frontman Ross Learmonth.
So it’s understandable if you too can’t imagine what the award-winning rock band would be like without its frontman.
This week shocking news filtered through that Prime Circle and their lead singer Ross Learmonth had parted ways after a stellar 23-year career.
The South African rock group and its frontman announced the end of their journey together.
So how does Ross feel about his departure from a band he’s been with for over two decades?
He’s clearly gutted.
“It has been extremely difficult,” Ross tells the Saturday Star.
“It wasn’t a decision taken lightly by me at all. Change is scary and the unknown is daunting but we have got to embrace the opportunities. It’s a cliche, but if your dreams don’t scare you they aren’t big enough.”
Judging from Ross’s explanation of how things went down, he says he would have loved to have continued his journey with the band, however the rest of the band felt differently.
“I would have loved to continue working with Prime Circle and to remain as the frontman, in tandem with my new solo work, but unfortunately, a different decision was made, which I respect, and wish them all the best.”
“I would have loved Prime Circle to continue playing certain key shows throughout the year, and not tour as much as we have done in the past.”
“I felt like it would allow and award us with the time to grow and explore our new musical journeys but the band decided to go a different way ultimately. It's unfortunate but I respect their decision and truly do wish them the best.”
Ross says the decision to part ways with the band was coming for some time now.
“Our parting ways has been something that we have felt coming for a while, there have been differences in opinion in who we work with and creative differences of how we go forward.
“I also needed to focus more on my solo career and that was hard for the band to understand.”
While sad to have departed the band, the musician says he is now looking forward to putting all his energy towards his solo career as an artist.
“It is sad as we have created a lot of great memories and milestones together.
“Prime Circle has been my everything for so long, and will truly always be my first love. But with that said, I am so excited to focus on new memories and music.”
“I didn’t want Prime Circle to be the only musical chapter of my life, I have a lot of music in me and it’s time to bring it out and start new chapters.”
That being said, he does admit he will miss the band plenty.
“My fondest memories are of touring around the world and breaking new ground with the band, going to places that no one thought we could go and embracing every opportunity that was thrown our way.”
“I'll miss the camaraderie and the band banter, for a long time it was my extended family.”
He says he also hopes to remain friends with the rest of the band following his departure.
“I hope we will remain/rekindle friendships, we did a lot of great things together so I truly hope that we can support each other on our separate journeys and be friends in that.”
Despite leaving, Ross says Prime Circle will always remain with him, as no one can take away the memories and milestones he’s enjoyed with the award-winning band.
I am sad to be leaving for sure, but at the same time it isn’t something I’m ‘losing’ - Prime will forever be a part of me.”
“Those songs will always be part of my portfolio of work, songs that I lived and loved, I put my heart and soul into.”
“My first love is always song-writing, I wrote ‘Hello’ at the age of 16 and auditioned to a group of guys with that song… we then became Prime Circle and that song changed all our lives.”
“So it’s scary in stepping out of the comfort zone of Prime Circle but it is an exciting thought.’
“As up until now that’s all I was, so I look forward to growing my song-writing and performing in new ways.”
He says he’s excited for his new journey and is ready to shine as a solo artist.
“My full focus is now on my solo career and getting out to the world as much as I can, it’s an exciting new chapter I am loving.”
“Parting ways was scary, but it also felt like the next step, it felt natural and scary in all the right ways.”
Ross also has some parting words for Prime Circle fans.
“Thank you for all the years of support and memories, this decision was the hardest because of my love for the fans, but I will still see you out on the road, this is not the end just a new beginning.”
“My key thing with performances is the fan’s experience, how they’re left feeling after a show.”
“I had someone recently tell me after I walked off stage ‘I feel so inspired! I need to go and create something’ - and that, that is where my drive lies - having that connection and experience.”