You have a massive Australian tour coming up this September 2017, what do you enjoy most and also what do you find most challenging about touring Australia? What can we expect from these up coming shows?
I love touring in Aus! I have a great band and we always have a lot of fun. We are always on the look out for great coffee wherever we go and we love rocking out and playing shows every night. It the best. I guess the challenging this is that it’s expensive and we have to travel long distances.
The shows on this tour will be super fun, we are playing some new songs and old song and favourites from the last tour. There will be a couple of surprise cameos in some cities too so it’s going to be a good time.
Who are your top 3 influences and icons?
Cat Power – she’s an incredible performer, songwriter and wears her heart on her sleeve. You can feel her vulnerability in her music and watching her live is electric. Her voice is sublime.
Aimee Mann – a timeless and prolific songwriter, who writes beautiful melodies and has a unique sound.
Dave Grohl – He’s a bit of a dag now but I was a huge Foo Fighters fan when I was a kid. I love his drumming and guitar riffs. He is a legend.
You’ve started a new partnership with Gift Box Organic, we hear that you will be selling a special tea towel as merch to help Gift Box Organic’s campaign donating women’s sanitary products/tampons to homeless women. How and why did this partnership come about?
I told my team that I’d love to be involved with anything to do with tampons or sanitary care. I think it’s something we should talk about more to take the shame out of being female and getting our periods! When the Giftbox Organic opportunity came up, it was a no brainer. I love what they do and what they stand for and I’m incredibly proud to be a part of their cause.
What are you listening to at the moment?
I’m listening to the new record by Land Of Talk ‘Life After Youth’. I have been a big fan of this band for many years and I was so excited that she was putting out a new album that I’ve had it on repeat for the last couple of months. It’s gorgeous.
This coming November you will be supporting Stevie Nicks and The Pretenders at the A Day On The Green shows, how do you feel about supporting Stevie Nicks and The Pretenders? How did you come about to get the support for Stevie?
Oh god I don’t know how that happened. I am extremely excited because I grew up listening to Fleetwood Mac and Stevie records, not to mention Pretenders records too. It’s going to be so much fun and definitely the biggest most exciting support I’ve ever done. Cant wait!
What do you like to do outside of music and does it affect your music?
I travel to India quite frequently. I love the food, and people and weather and history and I am always thinking about how I can move there! It’s is an incredible place, very colourful, confusing, and inspiring and I’ve written many songs there. I find it a wonderful place to be creative.
Image credit : Hannah Markoff
ALI BARTER X KEEN EYE 4 GIGS Since 2013, you’ve won TripleJ Unearthed and earned yourself a slot on the lineup of Laneway Festival that year, supported bands such as The Rubens, Vance Job and Cloud Control and recently released your debut album ‘A Suitable Girl’ which packs quite a punch, with a tour following soon! whats been the highlights and biggest challenges so far?
Recording an album was definitely the hardest part. It was super fun and amazing too but it really is a labour of love and I was pretty burnt out by the end. However, touring and the response from audiences just brought me back to life. I love playing shows with my band and travelling to to different cities and towns and playing and meeting amazing people who come to my shows. It’s be best. Oh and hitting #58 in the triple j Hottest 100 was unbelievable. I was in complete shock. I still kinda cant believe it!
People that follow my reviews know I’m very picky when it comes to solo singer-songwriters, but your style of pop/rock, grunge/rock that reminds me of bands such as ‘Garbage’ ‘Stevie Nicks’ ‘The Preatures’ and ‘Lash’, really separates you from the rest of the pack in my opinion. How do you plan to evolve with your music and stay ahead of the pack musically?
Oh thank you! Well, I really just make music that I like. I’m not thinking about how to stay ahead of the pack. I just want to make music that resonates with me and excites me. I have been demoing up new songs lately and already they sound a bit more developed than the last record and I think that just comes from experience with writing and recording lots of music.
what was the main theme and musical intent/story behind the songs off your debut album?
These song were about my experience in my late 20s, coming to terms with myself, accepting myself and letting stuff go. I had to get really honest with how I was feeling to move froward because I was holding myself back with fear and anger and insecurity and by writing about it really openly, I was able to let it all go.
Image credit : Hannah Markoff
Your songs have some pretty catchy hooks, though provoking lyrics and some good ol’ rock ’n roll energy, does your live performance meet all those attributes on stage? And what can fans expect at your live shows?
My shows are a lot of fun. Very loud and full of energy. My band are incredible so we have a good time on stage. We try to make it bigger and more rockin than that recordings.
I see, well figuratively, you lived in Papua New Guinea for a lot of your child hood, before moving to Cairns and finally back home to Melbourne, how has that all effected your music and songwriting approach?
I’m not sure if it did. I was 10 when we moved to Melbourne and I didn’t start writing my won songs and playing til I was 24ish. I have remained a traveller however, from my upbringing, so I guess I like to move around alot. I’m inspired by travel and new places and freedom so in that way, it’s affected my songwriting.
I noticed before you got back into music in 2013 you were a self proclaimed ‘rat bag’ tell me more about that?I’m intrigued.
Oh I was just a bit of a party kid. Got into trouble, stayed out late, worked in hospo and had a good time. I didn’t get serious about life until I was about 24.
And finally, what advice would you give young Aussies wanting to follow in your footsteps?”
Write lots of songs, play lots of gigs and trust yourself.