Where are you currently based and what is the music scene like there?
I’m Based in Brisbane, I moved from the UK 13 years ago. If you look at the scene in Australia from history back in the 80s / 90s then you can’t compare with the enthusiasm of both venues and punters. Db limits and pokies have plagued the scene somewhat. Venues don’t have the budget or are not prepared to pay for original artists the way cover bands and Tributes get paid. Apparently bands back then were finding a gig at least 3 times per week. Now we have agents selecting their “favourites”.
Brisbane is a place of diverse talent but we still haven’t seen anything that will put Australia back on the map yet for A & R visits. However, please feel free to check out my new single called ‘DumbStruck’
How can we progress and expose new music?
Great question! and I believe radio have much to answer for where educating the public and artists are concerned. A particular radio station for example, still have the same play list from when I moved here 13 years ago!! Friends and family in the UK are always saying to me “have you heard this new song” “have you seen this new rocking band” well no I haven’t ha ha, because radio in Australia does not fully support the cause for what’s developing and happening overseas unfortunately.
How did you first start playing music?
My late father use to sing to me and my brother. We shared a room growing up and my old man would pick a classic tune and play and sing to us on his rusty old acoustic guitar instead of reading a bedtime story. Bearing in mind we were 6 and 4 year old knippers. My father taught me the “3 chord wonder” as he called it haha. I practiced those 3 chords for weeks, I then taught myself some more from guitar books, that was before google lol.
It was when I met a good old pal at the first year of high school that it really began. I taught him a scale or two and now he is a top blues rock player in the South West of the UK. We put together a little novice garage band and rehearsed in bedrooms, garages and school halls. We had real passion man! We learn’t fast and soon booked our first gig at Plymstock Comprehensive School haha. It was the Christmas school disco that we would premiere at the age of 14. From here we grew as trio with myself on bass. Let’s just say the rest is history!
What’s been happening recently?
It’s been a hectic few weeks of late getting everything across the line ready for the single, video, EP and live show launch, and now interviews and promo. March 28th I marry the most amazing lady, so as one can imagine there is much to do. I’m also a full time driving instructor in Brisbane.
Your new single is out now, what influenced the sound and songwriting?
I wrote ‘DumbStruck’ over 14 years ago back in the UK, as a band then with my brother Del on drums we jammed it but never recorded these songs. At the time I was listening to a mix of bands from Trouble, Kyuss, Audioslave, Soundgarden to Stereophonics and HIM. I put an emphasis on melody and hooks as this formula gives colour and emotion. This was probably inherited from growing up listening to The Beatles. With ‘DumbStruck’ it was a progressive experience to write. It has evolved from its basic form and has guitar work that Slash himself could have written haha. The Canadian guitarist who wrote the solos, performed, mixed and mastered on the track goes by the name of Trevor (Hanuman) Stefiuk.
Where and when did you record/produce?
It has been an ongoing project that has spanned over the last two years with Allan Lahey at Taramalin Sound recording studio in Kingston QLD. Allan has been a pioneer and platform for original artists to record in Brisbane for many years. Due to life’s obstacles and funding it has taken longer than I had hoped, but it was worth the wait. Ben Kerswell played a major role in instrumentation and producing something a bit more contemporary. Unfortunately, Ben has had a life changing illness that stopped him in his tracks. Therefore, I was required to hire guys to help perform and complete the last track called ‘Plunge’
While in the process of mastering the track Strive and Repair, the decision was made to invest in a music video to align with this rocking tune. So if you like it rocking and loud this is your chance to hear something new. On the 28th February 2020 the EP ‘A Thousand Years High’ will be launched in Brisbane and be available online and for hard copies of the CD.
I am proud of what has been achieved here as a whole, and I humbly say that the single ‘DumbStruck’ needs to be heard on every radio station across the globe to justify its existence!
You have a EP on the way, how did you go about writing the EP and what influenced the writing?
All of the 5 songs were written firstly on the acoustic guitar over a decade ago. It was a great formula, I would pour a glass or two and put pen to paper. Melody always comes first with me then lyrics to fit the vocal melody. I was heavily influenced from the stoner rock and the grunge era. AIC showed how vox harmonies can be used with heavy crunching riffs. Over the years, vocally I have been influenced by Chris Cornell, Layne Staley. In the early days it was Axl Rose, David Coverdale, Paul Rodgers and Sebastian Bach I took vocal lessons from.
What have you found most rewarding and challenging during the creation of the new EP?
We all knew that the final track recorded on the EP ‘Plunge’ was going to be a challenge. With its unconventional structure and longer than average duration it turned out to certainly be that. All efforts and focus went into a performance for recording that we were happy with. The result is an epic, progressive original sounding track. Funding and time was a major factor for completing this EP.
What’s the EP title?
‘A Thousand Years High’
What do you like to do away from music?
I like to spend time with my kids, however they are now adults and doing their own thing! I like to walk somewhere scenic, visit the mountains and coast, wine and dine. I went through an obsessive stage of practicing the ancient Martial art known as the commercial name of Ninjutsu
Who are you listening to at the moment?
Clutch, Killswitch Engage and Paradise Lost
What’s planned for 2020?
Get married in March and to push this EP, Single and video and obtain as many gigs as possible. I will be writing and still have some heavy tunes to show the lads to later record a full album.
Favourite food and place to hangout?
Being a pomme I do like a decent hot Indian curry. There are a few good Thai restaurants at Westfield Garden City and Raby Bay harbour that I like to visit.