An Interview with Shelby J

Shelby J is an American singer, songwriter, entrepreneur and social activist, who has toured nationally and internationally with her band Blackgypsy and as leading backing vocalist in Prince’s The New Power Generation

Nothing Compares 2 Prince is a celebration of Prince’s life and career, making it’s world premiere in Australia a week after the anniversary of Prince’s passing (April 21st 2016), and features twelve performers (including Shelby), musicians, singers, producers and composers who, at various times, were directly involved in Prince’s incredible career.

What more can you tell me about the Australian show? What can audiences expect?

It’s going to be everything epic, amazing, fantabulous and awesomeness personified to the one hundredth power [laughs]. We are so excited about the collective of musicians that are coming together for this, it’s like a super group and Prince is the purple thread that binds us. To have us all coming together, bringing all of those different experiences that we have with him to Australia and playing music from so many different decades – I mean the set list is crazy. I’m not supposed to say what’s on it but I can tell you this, it’s bananas because it covers so much of his repertoire.

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An Interview with Ghouls’ Benedict Goold

UK Alt-Punk Rockers Ghouls are heading down under for their first Australian co-headline tour, sharing the run will be Australia’s own Foxblood. Starting in 2013, the band consists of Benedict Goold (Lead Vocals and Guitar), Sam Mussell (Bass), Ben Maz (Saxophone), Russel Spencer (Trombone) and Jay Swinstead (Drums).

You’re soon to be in Australia for your co-headline tour called No Better Place To Be. Looking at the schedule, you’re very lucky because the tour covers a wide part of the country, which not all local artists even get to. Meaning, you’ll get to see a lot of differences in the Australian way of life – from sand to surf to city. What are you most looking forward to seeing while you are here?

When you put it like that it makes me feel extremely lucky. It still doesn’t seem real that we are even going to Australia, let alone getting to see a whole lot of the country. This tour came about after tweet got out of hand and somehow ended up with us having a whole tour out there so it all seems surreal!

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An Interview with Brodie Rainbird from The Wolfe Brothers

With a new album set to be released next month, a new single out and two CMC nominations, the Wolfe Brothers have much to smile about. The new single ‘Ain’t Seen It Yet’, from their upcoming fourth album Country Heart, is a celebration of home and displays a more mature sound for the band. Catching up with one-third and guitarist Brodie Rainbird, we spoke about the evolution of the Wolfe Brothers and connecting with fans.

Earlier this year, the band released the single ‘Ain’t Seen It Yet’ off the upcoming album Country Heart, sporting a different sound to what people associate with the Wolfe Brothers. How does this new single represent what we can expect of the new album?

This new album, I see it as the next evolution of the Wolfe Brothers. It’s different to what we’ve done before and it’s us pushing our boundaries. Everything we’ve done with this album has been different. The process was turned completely on its head. We wanted to get a little bit uncomfortable. We wanted to sound way more modern than we’ve sounded before. We didn’t want to do just another Wolfe Brothers album; we meant for it to be different.

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An Interview with Casey Barnes

With the release of his catchy third single “Ain’t Coming Home”, off his upcoming new album The Good Life, Casey Barnes’s star continues to rise. Nominated for a prestigious Golden Guitar Award earlier this year, I spoke to the Tasmanian-born now Gold Coast-based country music artist about his latest release ahead of his performance at the sold-out-in-one-hour CMC Rocks Festival.

In a sense, a lot of people first came to know of you when you made the top 12 of Australian Idol in 2009. With Idol contestants Anthony Callea, Casey Donovan and current season’s Shannon Noll also competing in the reality series I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! Would you ever follow in the footsteps of your fellow alumni and go on the show?

I’d love to do it, but I reckon I’d struggle with those food challenges. [Shannon] is doing great. People are getting to see a different side to him and it’s going to be a huge positive. He seems like a decent guy and I really like his latest single. I think he’s going to have a good year.

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An Interview with Josh Setterfield

Josh Setterfield started his career in Brisbane-based pop-punk band, Call The Shots. When the group disbanded, he decided to go solo and embrace the new-sound of current country music. With his second country EP, From Dusk and its singles ‘Feelin’ Love’ and ‘Hometown’, and currently working on his third Til Dawn, the buzz around his name continues to soar.

Earlier this year, you performed at the annual ten-day Tamworth Country Music Festival. How was your Tamworth experience this year compared to when you were starting your transition into country music last year?

Tamworth was awesome compared to last year. Last year, I went there to find my feet. I went down to busk, but that’s all I had gig-wise. This year, I had a show almost every day, sometimes four times a day (laughs). I knew more people, fit in [and] obviously, coming from playing punk, it was a bit different coming into someone else’s scene but it seems to be going well (laughs).

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An Interview with John Williamson

“True Blue” Australian country music legend, John Williamson has never been shy to voice his opinions on topical issues. His two latest singles are no exception or void of controversy: “Pigs On The River” expresses his anger towards irrigators on the Murray-Darling River and “Love Is The Word” about hatred in the world.

Back in October you performed on Crusin’ Country No7: Family Reunion – a specialised cruise perfect for country music fans and music fans alike. How did you find the whole experience?

It’s a lot of fun because it’s the one time a whole lot of country musicians and excellent players too, get together. At the end of the day, when there’s a bar open to anybody who wants to jump up and play, that’s a lot of fun. I only had to work my own show on one day so the rest of it was having a good time with some friends.

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An Interview with Ben Portsmouth

In 2012, Ben Portsmouth won the Elvis Presley Enterprises ‘Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest’, the only artist from outside the USA to ever win this prestigious title since its inception in 2007. The English multi-talented musician, singer and songwriter will bring his World Tour to Australia in January next year.

You’re bringing your show to Australia in January. What can audiences expect from your upcoming tour?

I’m going to do everything Elvis over his career. I start off doing the Sun Studios [his recordings from between 1953 and 1955] where he started out, the movies, the 68’ Comeback [a television special]. That’s the first half of the show and I’ll change outfits accordingly [four or five]. Also I’m trying to tell a bit more of a story at the start, so I’ll be using audio snippets and visuals on the projector. The second half of the show will be Elvis like in concert in the 1970s and all the hits.

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