Interview by Chris Dornan
The most famous sisters from Darraweit Guim, Victoria are just about to hit the road on their BAD REALITY National Tour. They’ve had an exciting 12 months sharing the stage with such iconic bands as The Foo Fighters, Tenacious D and The Kaiser Chiefs and playing to huge crowds at The Glastonbury Festival, The Sunset Strip Music Festival and Big Day Out 2012. Just in case you’ve been living in a dark cave for the last three years without a radio, the band I’m speaking of is STONEFIELD.
We caught up with Amy Findlay, drummer and lead vocals from STONEFIELD prior to their BAD REALITY National Tour
Chris Dornan LifeMusicMedia: I Just had a listen to your new single “Bad Reality”. It’s got fresh new sounds with well written lyrics. Who wrote the single and where did the motivation and creativity come from to package it all together?
Amy Findlay: We all wrote the song together. We were finishing recording the first half our new EP and just as we were going into the studio to record the other half no one felt like we had our first single yet. We were kind of freaking out a little bit and putting a lot of pressure on ourselves. We just realised that we didn’t have to put so much pressure on ourselves and chill out and let it come naturally as we have in the past recordings. One day I just got the melody in my head and Hannah just played a few chords and it all just came together in a few minutes. It luckily was one of those songs that came along naturally.
LifeMusicMedia: The BAD REALITY National Tour kicks off on April 19th, 2012 with The Delta Riggs and Kingswood as support acts. What should we expect to see during the live shows compared to ones of the past?
Amy Findlay: We’ll be playing some our old songs and some new stuff from our upcoming EP. We might chuck in a song or two that we’ve been working on for the new album to be released at the end of the year. We have a surprise that I’m not going to say for the tour as well. I think it will be really cool to be touring with the same two bands supporting us. Unlike the past tour we had a lot of different bands supporting. In the past we were meeting new people and having to say goodbye straight away. It will be really good travelling together with all these guys, becoming good friends and in turn create a good show with all of us together.
LifeMusicMedia: So you recorded your new single “Bad Reality” and soon to be released EP with the legendary Lindsay Gravina at Birdland Studios. How did you find recording in a new environment with a different producer?
Amy Findlay: Lindsay was awesome. We worked really, really well together. He’s an old school producer that really cared about what we were doing. He also took the time to teach us everything about the recording process. He put just the right amount of pressure on us to work really hard but not completely. It was really refreshing to have someone who stayed in the studio the whole time and be completely focused.
LifeMusicMedia: You’ve played with some really big bands this past year (The Foo Fighters, Tenacious D and The Kaiser Chiefs) and also shared the stage with great artists during The Sunset Strip Festival in Los Angeles, like Motley Crue, the legendary Robby Krieger from The Doors, Buckcherry, and numerous others.
How do you keep it all together as a band with the pressure to perform at such a high level amongst huge talent?
Amy Findlay: I think it’s been a lot of hard work and dedication. We are all really dedicated to the band and always wanting to do our best. I think the whole thing is with being four sisters; we wanted people to see us for our music and not just some gimmick. We are sisters and we are who we are. We are a rock band and most of the bands I guess can relate to us by our commitment. We have a really strong team behind us including a great manager and an awesome booking agent that work really hard for us. They push us to do our best.
LifeMusicMedia: Is there anyone that you haven’t already played with during all the festivals and tours so far that would be your dream to share the stage with?
Amy Findlay: LED ZEPPELIN would be our number one choice followed by ZAPPA PLAYS ZAPPA. I have seen ZAPPA PLAYS ZAPPA play heaps of times and it would be amazing.
LifeMusicMedia: Playing to smaller crowds or huge crowds such as The Glastonbury Festival do you feed off them as you’re performing on stage? Also do you ever take a moment and realise this is pretty special?
Amy Findlay: The crowd definitely makes a difference; the more rowdy the crowd is the more we feed off of them. It is strange as we do sometimes realize how amazing it is. We don’t over think it and just go with it as it is. I think our heads would explode if we did.
LifeMusicMedia: I believe that the Finlay Sisters were born in the wrong era in all honesty. I say this because I’m a huge Led Zeppelin fan and love listening to Frank Zappa and good classic rock and roll. Stonefield play music beyond your age and that’s a good thing. What kind of advice would you give to another young band wanting to have a crack at the Australian music scene?
Amy Findlay: I think the first thing that is important is not to be a band strictly to follow trends. I think that’s a silly mistake when bands do that. You should just play the music you love and enjoy it with feeling. When making decisions you should know if it’s right or wrong. You just have to listen to what your heads telling you. Take every opportunity to play as a new band. We played every gig that we could just to get listened to when we started. We even played in the snow one time. It was an opportunity to play a show so we took it.
LifeMusicMedia: Congratulations on being chosen to play at The Triple J One Night Stand in the big metropolis of Dalby, Queensland on June 2, 2012. Are you looking forward to be playing at such a huge event as many other acts have successfully done in the past?
Amy Findlay: We are definitely looking forward to it. Playing in regional towns is always exciting. There is this whole other level of appreciation. Playing in Adelaide or Perth the crowds are so different because they’re not as lucky as Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney. They don’t get as many bands to play in their city so they are extra appreciative of it. There is going to be so many people there and we are super excited to be playing The One Night Stand in Dalby.
Life Music Media: With Stonefield playing a lot of big festivals are you planning on any more big trips overseas or are you focusing on staying home for a while?
Amy Findlay: This year, unless something absolutely amazing comes up which hasn’t happened yet, we want to focus mainly on Australia and get as many people to know about us here and build on that. Once we do that we will seriously consider going overseas.
LifeMusicMedia: When can we expect the new EP to be released?
Amy Findlay: The new EP is complete. We are just waiting for it to be pressed and we should have it in about three weeks. We are writing the new album at the moment and it should be out in September or towards the end of the year.
LifeMusicMedia: We look forward to the Bad Reality National Tour and can’t wait for the release of your new EP.
Amy Findlay: Thank you.