Category Archives: Interview

Amandah Wilkinson of Operator Please tells Tara-Kai Hammond, “It’s good to be home…” in the lead up to the Valley Fiesta

Amandah Wilkinson of Operator Please tells Tara-Kai Hammond, “It’s good to be home…” in the lead up to the Valley Fiesta

Operator Please

This years Valley Fiesta promises to be the biggest yet, with artists like yourselves set to headline, joined by the likes of Sparkadia, Urthboy, DJ Dexter (Avalanches), Jeff Lang, Katy Steele (Little Birdy), Avalon Drive, Winnie Coopers, The Gin Club and Texas Tea, to name a few. How do you feel to be included in such a noteworthy line up of artists?
We feel honoured to get the chance to play. We have never played the Valley Fiesta and I have been wanting to see the bands on the line-up. We have been away for such a long time, so it’s good to be home.

So what do you think it’ll be like playing the Valley Fiesta now that you’ve produced a Top 10 album and achieved international acclaim?
I don’t really know to be honest, and I don’t really think about those things when we play a show.
If anything you should never have any expectations, you never know what the crowd or atmosphere will be like until you are onstage. Hopefully it will be okay.

Who are you looking forward to seeing perform at this years Valley Fiesta? And Why?
I am looking forward to seeing DJ Dexter! He’s is incredible.
I want to see Katy Steele, because I haven’t seen just her play before.

Operator Please would have played at some very different venues, (small and large, etc) over the years… What’s the best gig you ever did? And why?
The best gig to date for me is a toss up between Melt festival in Germany and the Shorditch Crawl! We played Melt festival at night and it was the perfect atmosphere! We had a beautiful crowd too. It was amazing to go there and have people come to see us and what was a major bonus was that there were people singing! And the Shorditch Crawl show was messy and hilarious but still a favourite. It was about 1am and the place was packed, everyone was dancing, lots of people swinging off various light stands and stairs into the crowd and even people dancing on the bar! The fold back was shit, all our instruments broke, stage divers mangled the kit. Incredible!!!Amandah I read somewhere that you picked random people who could play an instrument to join the band. How did you all combine your musical styles to make the winning combination that is Operator Please?
We didn’t really consciously combine our styles, I think that’s what makes us Operator Please. We were obviously influenced by different music but we really didn’t think about the sound we were going to make. We did what we could do with our instruments and still do the same.

What made you decide to record an independent EP, do some shows and self-promotion, then head over to the Big Apple, (New York)?
We recorded an independent EP because it was the next logical thing for us to do, we just started playing shows and we made little badges and our own screen printed tshirts but we didn’t have any music recorded. So we scraped up some money between us and recorded some songs live, all very quick. We distributed it ourselves by burning copies and getting my sister to design the art and got bits and pieces like cardboard and stuff to print on. You have to do things by yourself if you want to get them done, we decided to go to New York because we were invited to showcase a week before CMJ.So the line up for Operator Please has changed quite a few times since the beginning…Why is this?
Being in a band isn’t for everyone. Our first Violinist left because she didn’t want to perform music live and didn’t enjoy it. Our keyboard player left as a mutual decision between her and the rest of the band. We are away so much from home and touring is a strenuous thing and if you can’t cope the slightest it isn’t right. You are put totally out of your comfort zones and you have alot of time to think and you live in and out of eachothers pockets day in and day out. We started out really young and growing up touring and making music and seeing things you form your own opinions and forge your way of life, if you don’t love what you are doing, then you shouldn’t do it.I’ve read that you’ve never expected anything and are happy enough to have people turning up to your shows and liking what they hear. So what motivates or inspires you to write and perform? The artistic expression? As an outlet? For the joy of it? For others enjoyment?
I enjoy making music. I enjoy playing music. Music is a release for me from everything, it is also and expression. Ultimately when you start making music, you make it for yourself, you never think that other people are actually going to listen, but when they do it’s amazing and you are appreciative for it. Music like many forms of art is a single minded thing. If you are constantly thinking of how to please everyone else, how are you supposed to be happy with yourself.

What is the band up to at the moment? Writing? Jammin’? Recording? Touring? Or just taking a break?
We are writing, playing a couple of shows, but we are just happy to be at home and in one country for more than a week

Faker Plays The EKKA Interview – 26 August 2008

LifeMusicMedia caught up with Nathan Hudson of Faker, who will be playing the Brisbane EKKA ahead to their ‘Are You Magnetic’ National Headline Tour.

Faker

Tamie here representing LifeMusicMedia, saying a huge hello to the Sydney band, FAKER, who’s going to be performing at Brisbane EKKA on the 26th August….whoooooot – you’ll be socially inept to miss them. These guys ROCK….literally.

How’s your day been?

Nathan: Good. Been cut out trying to relax, actually.

Have you been to the EKKA before?

Nathan: No, I haven’t, I’ve been to the Sydney equivalent. That’s always fun. The idea of playing at something like that is really exciting for us.

Fame, you have it, and your music is worthy of it. Has anything interesting happened ever since your music has become more mainstream?

Nathan: I dunno, It’s all been pretty organic, so it’s more like a work in progress and something that kind of happens. What we’re doing is part of something that continues. In terms of whether people interests in what we’re doing has changed, I guess we’re more validated. Hopefully music is about communication and you spend a good deal of time trying to convince people that what you’re doing is worth making and then worth listening to and it’s nice when it translates on that level. It’s just an exciting time, people coming up to us and saying congratulations and we love what you do.

I love your lyrics, I’m a big lyrics person.

Nathan: Thank you. I generally have an idea of where I want to go – lyrically, also it takes me a long time to finish or finalise how I’m gonna do that. Getting into the studio with Paul Fox in ‘Be The Twilight’, our producer wanted to track as much of the vocal as live as possible and so we finish a lot of lyrics on the fly, which I guess to listen to is fresher to me to listen back to and hopefully for other people as well.

Fantastic. With ‘This Heart Attack’ and your new single ‘Are You Magnetic’, there is a big difference in attitude. Why did you choose to release this next?

Nathan: I feel like ‘This Heart Attack’ to ‘Are You Magnetic’ is a natural progression for me. ‘This Heart Attack’ is like doing your head in and I guess it’s to get away and sort things out. To figure out what it was you exactly liked about this relationship or any kind of relationship in the first place. ‘Are You Magnetic’ is kind of about making those decisions that are sometimes harder to make. To try to move forward in the relationship or to end it.

Back to the EKKA, do you have an ultimate show bag that you’d like?

Nathan: The only thing I know about show bags is that they’ve got a lot of chocolate in them really, either that or magic tricks. I’m kinda torn between both of those things. Each of us as kids would have a limited amount of money to spend on show bags, and I had to decide whether my belly was more important than the entertainment or the entertainment more important than my belly. It was really, really difficult. I’d be in tears trying to decide which way to go.

The Bertie Beetle Bags, are pretty good value.

Nathan: They’d be in the paper review with a list of how exactly they were the best seller or something. I don’t know anybody that’s bought a Bertie Beetle outside of a Bertie Beetle showbag.

No, I don’t think you can buy them singly.

Nathan: That’s bizarre.

Any plans on jumping on any rides while you’re at the EKKA. Will you get out after the show?

Nathan: Everything that throws me up-side-down and around a bit, I’m excited about. I’d like to go on.. Yeah, it’s called a Whizzer or something. That thing where you’re in a cage and the cage goes around and you go around in the cage? Perfect!

Good Stuff Just wanted to ask if you had a chance to play/jam with somebody, who would it be?

Nathan: Sitting in a room with guitars and jamming doesn’t interest me so much except if it’s with my band… the band that I’m in. It’s kind of taken a long time to develop those relationships and work out how to do that. The idea of sitting with someone that does stuff electronically and finding musical ideas that way is really exciting.

Would it be possible, to perhaps while you’re on stage take a photo of the crowd for me?

Nathan: HaHa, that’s kinda not something I tend to do, I tend to be about the singing and the dancing, and doing stuff – I’ve often wanted to get photos of myself with the crowd, but, the idea of holding a camera and taking the photos is not something I do.

Last Question – The fans, what can we expect from FAKER in the future?

Nathan: Ummmm, Music and the celeberation of music!

Thank you for your time Nathan…

Credits: Tamie Guttormsen / Sabrina Man

www.faker.com.au
www.ekka.com.au

Leonard Cohen

leonard_cohen
For four decades, Leonard Cohen has been one of the most important and influential songwriters of our time, a figure whose body of work achieves greater depths of mystery and meaning as time goes on. His songs have set a virtually unmatched standard in their seriousness and range. Sex, spirituality, religion, power – he has relentlessly examined the largest issues in human lives, always with a full appreciation of how elusive answers can be to the vexing questions he raises. But those questions, and the journey he has traveled in seeking to address them, are the ever-shifting substance of his work, as well as the reasons why his songs never lose their overwhelming emotional force.

His first album, Songs of Leonard Cohen (1967), announced him as an undeniable major talent. It includes such songs as “Suzanne,” “Sisters of Mercy,” “So Long, Marianne” and “Hey, That’s No Way to Say Good,” all now longstanding classics. If Cohen had never recorded another album, his daunting reputation would have been assured by this one alone.

However, the two extraordinary albums that followed, Songs From a Room (1969), which includes his classic song, “Bird on the Wire,” and Songs of Love and Hate (1971), provided whatever proof anyone may have required that that the greatness of his debut was not a fluke. (All three albums are reissued in April, 2007.)



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