Inspired by his Dad, who would burst into his room playing guitar and singing blues songs he made up about going to school, music has become Joel’s passion. Not very surprising, when you see the lineage of the Leffler family. Turns out that the Leffler music heritage stretches well back into the 18th century, with multiple successful Professors of Music sharing a direct bloodline with Joel.
Joel’s journey began in 2003 when he woke one morning to find that his Father had fulfilled his birthday wish. At the end of the bed was a brand new acoustic guitar. ‘You would think when I was a kid, my father bursting into my room with his guitar singing blues songs he made up about ‘getting up & going to school’ would have turned me off music, but it in fact did the opposite. He bought me my first guitar, taught me my first chord and booked me my first gig at 16. He inspired me to not only become a singer but a writer & creator’.
Now with 10 years of song writing under his belt, 2 nationally recognised song writing awards, 4 top 10 Triple JJJ Unearthed charting songs & a string of appearances on stages around the country, Joel is within arm’s reach of matching his forefathers.
Joel’s new EP, ‘Run With The Wolves’ is produced by Sony Music Australia’s in house engineer Pete Holz & mastered by Grammy award winner William Bowden.
Run with the Wolves Trailer
Run with the Wolves (3:49)
Promise Me Tomorrow (2:47)
Love Thirsty (3:02)
In My Pocket (3:24)
3 March – Sutherland Entertainment Centre, Sutherland
Australia’s Deep South birth’s a traditional old school Funk/RnB Band ‘Mama K and the Big Love’
“Hailing from Australia’s “deep-south” (Hobart, Tasmania), Mama K and The Big Love perform all original, old school funk, soul and rhythm n blues. – Think The Blues Brothers with Aretha out front”
The brainchild of Kartika Franks (Mama K) who formed the band back in 2014 with a view to creating an original group to fit in with ex-UK Guitarist and Composer Dave Johnstone’s musical ethos – “I think groove, melody and lyrics are the three key components of any song, and any one of those elements can spark a song idea. The complete lyrics always come last and take forever. I attempt to write lyrics that tell a story, or convey a message as poetically and efficiently as possible. I like the syllabic rhythm of words and their sound when they complement each other sonically… The song subjects either come from storylines or from the things I am passionate about,”
The debut record was recorded late last year at Red Planet in Hobart by producer Stewart Long (Violent Femmes, Luca Brasi) . The album was tracked through a 1975 Vintage Harrison 24/32 Recording Console and mixed to a Vintage Studer B67 Analog Tape Deck. “So much can be done with digital these days, but sometimes you just want some romance!” said Stew, “We used old gear wherever it felt good.”
First single and video “Moth to The Flame” Is a story about a stripper and her loyal flock of followers (who hang off her every move), and a priest with his loyal flock of followers (who hang off his every word).
The song is brilliantly brought to visuals in the video featuring acclaimed Hobart Actor Jeff Michel who plays both roles in a masterful cross dressing, hip churning solo performance. See https://youtu.be/RiGaKuCpPLQ
The Album ‘Blind’ will be released March 10
(pre release review copies are available on request) Upcoming Shows Thursday, March 2nd, 2017
‘Busting Out’ – International Women’s Day event for Women’s Health Tasmania
Moonah Arts Centre, 23-27 Albert Road, Moonah, TAS, 7009
7.30 – 9.00pm
Tickets $25 full / $20 concession.
Album launch party – Friday, March 17th, 2017
The Duke Hotel, 192 Macquarie Street, Hobart, TAS, 7000
Recent Quotes “…they’re an incredible band… a really, really exciting group, huge voices” Ryk Goddard, ABC Radio Hobart (Breakfast show 27/01/17) “what an amazing band…. I already have people wanting your new CD”Alan Jennison, Publisher/Editor Tasmanian Living Magazine (24/01/17)
On its latest release,“Way Back Home,” the Backtrack Blues Band has delivered an exciting harp and guitar-infused album that really hits the mark! The solid grooves, stellar guitar, electrifying harmonica, and vocals make this album one of the best blues releases of 2016. Reminiscent of the sounds of Paul Butterfield and the early Fabulous Thunderbirds, the songs on this record are true electric blues with lots of soul and energy. The band has won three consecutive Tampa Bay Music Awards for “Best Blues Band” and has performed at festivals and concerts around the world with blues music legends like Stevie Ray Vaughan, B.B.King, Buddy Guy, Robert Cray, Gregg Allman, John Lee Hooker, Johnny Winter, and others. “Way Back Home” marks the band’s fifth album, and the critics have proclaimed it the band’s best work! “Way Back Home” is receiving worldwide airplay, placing it at #8 on Roots Music Blues Rock Radio Chart. Even more, “Way Back Home” was selected among the world’s top 50 blues albums of 2016!
“This is blues par excellence, raw essential blues and quintessentially this type of music is what the term was designed for! … In truth this album is the best I’ve been fortunate enough to review. Musically this disc is flawless, the arrangements and the vocals are superb and the instrumental renditions truly magnificent! It is a must for any aficionado of the blues genre,” – Tom Walker, Blues Matters Magazine
“Backtrack Blues Band has been delivering some of the finest blues to come out of the Sunshine State and continues to do so onWay Back Home. This album is a must have for all blues lovers. If it’s piano blues that gets your engine humming, then this album is for you. If you can’t get enough harp playing, you will be left breathless. This album is sure to make existing fans happy and bring numerous new fans out to see The Backtrack Blues Band,” – Steve Crowley, American Blues Scene
“The songs drip with guitar and harp and you just can’t help tapping your feet to the infectious rhythms. Their sound is reminiscent of the early electric Muddy Waters, with the harp getting plenty of air and there’s lots of tasty Texas-inspired guitar throughout,” – John Knighton, Fatea Records
The Violent Femmes are BACK. Last year they toured Australia after the release of their first record in 15 years: “We Can Do Anything” Now they’re returning this March and April to promote their new live album (out soon).
See show dates below and find additional information on their website:
March 16 – Melbourne Arts Centre – St. Kilda, VIC
March 17 – Costa Hall Deakin University – Geelong, VIC
March 18 – All Saints Winery – Rutherglen, VIC
March 20 – Factory – Lewisham, NSW
March 22 – NEX at Wests City – Newcastle West, NSW
March 23 – Panthers – Penrith, NSW
March 24 – Waves – Fairy Meadow, NSW
March 25 – Annie’s Lane – Queanbeyan, NSW
March 27 – Darwin Entertainment Centre – Darwin, NT
March 29 – The Tivoli – Brisbane, QLD
March 31 – Twin Towns – Coolangatta, QLD
April 1 – The Shed at Aussie World – Sunshine Coast, QLD
If you would like to interview the band, be added to the guest list, do live reviews, or have additional requests, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
The band have been touring through Europe for summer over there and return to our shores to present the multi facetted live show that has been developed over the past few years.
Leader Sophie Kinston was recently interviewed and had this to add-
“I’ve just returned from a 31 date tour of Hollland, Ireland, UK, and Germany, launching this album, playing some quite amazing festivals, gigs, street shows, pop up shows, boat shows…..it was the 4th Europe tour, and now i’m back in Oz. Touring the album to some of our favorite spaces. Tailor Birds is a unique sound, so it’s really important that our shows reflect this. So we’ve got a couple of festivals – Alma’s Hem in South Australia, and FRL in VIC, plus some local markets and gigs – Bar Oussou, Queen Vic meat market, Ceres, a Melbourne Sofar Sounds gig, Sydney’s Mr Falcons and a show in the Rocks, plus a special climbing wall show over 3 dates, where we’ll actually be playing inside the wall, plus a street show outside the wall. ”
Tell us a quick, on the road or studio, anecdote. –
“The Azart Ship of Fools. I played on this boat in Holland just this past tour. The inside was thick with steel, and the sound when pushed up a level, it reverberated beautifully. The people on the boat are some of the most amazing humans, promoting new and unique music, music that entertains and thrills. You can’t not have a good gig there. The sound became less about the songs, and more about the vibe, it sort of became other worldly. Must have been my best gig of the tour. The boat, incidentally is headed for Australia, so it seems. From Holland, they head to India, the Canary Islands, and then Australia. ”
DATES : Sat 19 th / Sun 20 th / Sun 27 th Nov TIMES : Come anytime from 4 – 6.30pm on any of the above dates
(WITH a final show, Sun 27th Nov, 7 – 8pm) TIX : $10 p/person, TIX avail. at the wall on the day
OR email : email@example.com
Nov 20th – South Melbourne Market – 10 – 12midday VIC
Thurs 24th Nov – Bar Oussou, Melbourne VIC
Sat 26th – Sofar Sounds, Melbourne VIC
Dec 2nd – 4th – FRL festival, VIC
Dec 8th – solo show – Mr Falcons, Glebe, Sydney NSW
Dec 9th – duo show – Mr Falcons, Glebe, Sydney NSW
Dec 10th & 11th – Rocks market, The Rocks Sydney NSW
Checkout this video of one of the ‘Pop Up” shows in London.
We got Trav the drummer to take a few moments and chat with us-
Foghorn Media: What inspired you to become a musician? Who were your early influences?
Trav: I was personally inspired by all the bands I used to watch as an under-ager in Perth/Freo. Whether is was the local bands, like Beaverloop, NIL, Cinema Prague, or some unknown band rocking out to 20 people. I was also particularly inspired when I got to see great live bands on tour like RATM, Smashing Pumpkins, NIN, Fugazi. I still get inspired today by great new bands.
FM: Tell us a little about how you write; how do the songs come? What gets you going creatively?
Trav: We really aren’t so formulaic with how we write: sometimes it comes out of a jam, sometimes someone will bring in just a riff, and sometimes even a whole song which we will all just add an influence on. I think we all come from such different places musically, that no matter how things start it always takes a few twists and turns creatively. We really like demo’ing our ideas now too, and in the recording process I feel like the songs evolve even more, as we usually pick up a few things we want to add or take away.
FM: Your bio mentions that the band is named after a band members Grandmother? Tell us about how that came to be.
Trav: Yeah, our singer’s Grandmother’s name was actually “Vida Cain,” We trialled a few names in the early days, but nothing really did it for us. We thought “Vida Cain” had a bit of a ring to it so we went with that. Sadly, Vida is no longer with us, but I’m told she absolutely hated rock music and would probably be mortified to know that there’s a rock band named after her.
FM: What is the first record you bought and why?
Trav: The first record I actually bought for myself was RATM. I was at 78s in Perth and I remember just being blown away by how much I could feel the emotions in the music. And as a drummer back in the day it didn’t hurt that I loved the rhythm section.
FM: What current OZ acts inspire you? International acts?
Trav: I can’t help getting inspired by little bits of everything I hear. I have heard great songs by Tame Impala, Kingswood, Ball Park Music, Pendulum and Calling all Cars have certainly have inspired me. I know we play in a rock band, but internationally I would say Kendrik Lamar, Alabama Shakes, Arctic Monkeys.
FM: Tell us a little about your music and what a crowd can expect at a live show.
Trav: A lot of people describe it as riff rock. I guess it’s melodic with some pop elements, but really high energy, rock music made to be played live. We put in a lot of energy into our live shows and the crowd usually gives us that energy back.
FM: Favourite artists of all time?
Trav: Foo Fighters, RATM, Beastie Boys
FM: Favourite film?
Trav: Pulp Fiction. I like a good quirky intertwining storyline, be it in a song, movie, or a shady drunken tour incident. Pulp Fiction did that pretty well.
FM: Favourite food?
Trav: Anything you can buy at a bakery. Nothing like a bit of gluttony and gluten.
FM: You are backstage with Chad Kroeger; what do you say?
Trav: Why? Just…why?
FM: Where do you see aussie music heading?
Trav: Into the depths of hell until 4 rock super heros come to it’s rescue with nothing, but an instrument and a drink rider. Either that or it’s just scheduled for a bit of a cycle of something different. I enjoyed the first tastes of skip hop and psychedelic pop that had a long run here, but now it’s spread a bit thin and I can’t wait to see what pops up next. There is certainly plenty of talented musicians around playing so many styles- it’s just a matter of what get’s picked up. We’d love it to be our music!
FM: What are your future plans for the rest of 2016 heading into 2017?
Trav: After our release at Badlands Bar in Perth, we will be going on an East Coast tour of Australia. We have plans for a trip to USA in 2017. Other than that, we plan on just getting back to playing live a whole lot after all that time in the studio.
At this point in his ever evolving career, pianist and composer, Steve has taken it to the next level with the release of his stunning new album, “Dividing The Darkness,” To fulfill his creative vision for this project, Steve chose to work with one of the premier new age and contemporary instrumental producers in the world; the Grammy winning founder of the legendary Windham Hill Records, Mr. Will Ackerman. Along with Will’s roster of world-class studio musicians at Imaginary Road Studios, Steve has created an album that has garnered critical acclaim from highly regarded reviewers in the genre, who have described it as having “an astonishing level of sophistication, intensity, and heartfelt emotional expressivity,” In fact, the maestro Ackerman himself refers to the emotional range heard in Steve’s recording as: “a testament to the resilience of the human soul and the power of hope,” And in Steve’s own words: “When one’s talent is realized and pursued in a positive way, its limits may be nonexistent,”
QnA with Foghorn Media
Foghorn Media: What inspired you to become a pianist/composer? Who are your early influences?
Steve Rivera: I have always had a passion for music. I grew up with music in the home. My musical interests comes from several places. My family was and is very musical. My dad plays piano and sings, my older brother Robert (who passed away 6 years ago) was active playing piano, and one of my younger brothers plays piano and is a proficient guitar player. I first started playing music at a very young age. My dad often tells of a story that when I was about 5 years old he came home from work and I was really excited to show him a new song that I wrote.
FM: Tell us a little about how you write. How do the songs come? What gets you going creatively?
SR: Well in regards to how I write songs, it all depends on why I sit down and what I am trying to write. Other times I will just have a tune rattling around in my head and then I will sit down and work on it. I may just be moved by some emotion (happiness, peacefulness, anger or disappointment) and sit down and want to express those emotions through music.
FM: Your bio mentions “you took a break from music to work for a professional ice hockey team” us what went on there and more?
SR: Well back in the mid 90’s I had went to my first ice hockey game and fell in love with it. Growing up in Southern California I surfed and skated my whole life, but I had never ice skated before, let alone play ice-hockey. I started playing ice-hockey and shortly after that I had the opportunity to work for the Los Angeles Kings Hockey team as one of the assistant equipment managers. It was during the Wayne Gretzky years.
FM: What is the first record you bought and why?
SR: Oh wow. If my memory serves me correctly it was Iron Maiden’s ‘Number of the Beast,’ I really liked the album cover.
FM: What current Australian acts inspire you?
SR: Well obviously my current favorite Oz artist has to be Fiona Joy.
FM: Tell us a little about your music and what a crowd can expect at a live show ?
SR: I describe ‘Dividing The Darkness’ as “retrained simplicity that is emotionally moving,” Being that I was classically trained I can easily move up and down the piano to “show off” how good I am. But with ‘Dividing The Darkness’ I wanted to create music that was moving, flowing, and open. Knowing that I was going to have award winning musicians included on the album, I really wanted to leave them room too. So while my album is definitely piano driven, I have always thought of ‘Dividing The Darkness’ as a musical whole, so much more than just piano.
FM: Favourite artists of all time?
FM: Favourite film?
SR: Wow. There are so many. A wide variety from, ‘The Usual Suspects’ to ‘Blazzing Saddles’ and ‘The Princess Bride’ to ‘Awakenings’ and ‘As Good As it Gets,’
FM: Favourite book?
SR: Les Miserable by Victor Hugo
FM: What are your future plans for 2016/2017?
SR: That is a really hard question that I don’t think I can give a knowledgeable answer too. I would really like to see my music move forward, but I realize that while I will do everything in my power to be present and do what I can to move things forward at the end of the day it is really not up to me. There are so many things that happen in life that I have learned no matter how much I plan or prepare life can and does take turns of its own. I am just really excited about finding out what the future has in store.
If you haven’t yet, read through a QnA with the boys to kick off their latest EP The Door –
Q & A with Jack and Curtis………
What inspired you to become a singer in a band?
The meticulous strain of learning covers and not playing them perfect and or well. If it’s your own song you get to decide what’s perfect and what’s right. It’s a pretty good feeling playing your own music and seeing people in the crowd enjoying themselves as much as you do. Kinda if we get you off then we’ll get off kinda thing.
My old man played guitar when I was young and I always wanted to play. He got me a nylon string and off I went (he still has that guitar). Dad loved James Taylor, Paul Simon, Dylan, and all of those singer song writers, so I guess that is where it started. My teen years in the 90’s in the UK started the band/rock music for me. It was a great time to be around the music scene in England: Oasis, Blur, The Verve even The Spice Girls – ha ha.
Who are your early influences?
As I came to the understanding that I wanted to be a musician I really liked musicians that were unique and matter what they were doing you kinda knew it was them. Early on I was influenced by a lot of bands. I try and steal something from everybody. I am a bit of a guitar pedal addict so if they are using some sort of effect they are an influence. It’s my way of hiding that I actually have no idea what I am doing.
Tell us a little about how you write, how do the songs come? What gets you going creatively?
Usually Jack or someone would come in with an idea, then we try to flip it on its head and make it good, ha ha. No, we jam it out in the room with the boys try new and interesting ideas over the old ones. Really the songs only come together with us pushing each other to be different. I work really hard on them on my own, but no matter how hard you plan and think your idea is right everyone else’s is usually better. That’s the great thing about a band its amalgamation of lots of ideas.
What gets us going is being in that room together, when everything clicks and we all get a little smirk knowing this feels right; probably the beers as well.
Sometimes they just happen. The good ones just flow. It’s usually something I’m angry about. I get some chords going but the melody and lyric is what I find most important. Someone once told me to write what I know and feel don t try to fake it. Which is so true and the best tip I ever heard.
After that I take it to the band. Then they make some noises and change some parts and boom we have a new song. I would say one in every three we write makes it to the live set. One in four get recorded.
Your bio mentions “newsworthy angle/funny story or event’ tell us what went on there.
The Gibson Guitar endorsement was amazing. We had finished pre-production on our album ‘Burning In The Sun’ and we are hanging out in the studio. Marshall, our Publisher & Label) and all round Legend said ‘You guys need anything else for recording?’ Yeah some good guitars, we said and laughed it off. Next day phone rings, it’s Marshall – ‘Go down to the pro shop, they’ve got some GIBOs for you to use’. I jump in the car, the exhaust pipe falls off on the way over, get to the shop meet the Rep, top bloke, we walk out with a Thunderbird Bass, Nikki Sixx Signiture (took it out of the display case for us) an SG and a Vintage Les Paul.
Put about 15 grands worth of guitars in the back of my 1000 dollar car next to the broken exhaust I recovered from the road. A few months after that I was added to the Gibson Artists list. Now I put my fancy guitar into the back of my 1000 dollar car next to the broken exhaust.
What is the first record you bought and why?
It was a Wiggles tape, I was 7.
The one and only, Chesney Hawks, went halves with my brother it was a vinyl single, I have no idea why.
What current OZ acts inspire you? Ditto for international acts?
I am inspired by a lot of bands and artist we play with. The hard work they put in and the amazing talent that goes mostly unnoticed. Australia has a massive music community waiting to be heard. Tune into some community radio is my advice. International acts – at the moment I can’t stop listening to Jason Isbell’s last two albums.
Tell us a little about your music and what a crowd can expect at a live show?
I like to think or music is always evolving, I’m pretty sure we don’t play anything the same twice, we kinda feel each other out and hope that us having a good time shines through. We can get pretty loud but we love it that’s why we do it.
We really enjoy the live shows and I hope people see that when we play. As for the crowd we will take anyone who shows up, ha ha
Favourite artists of all time?
For me, it’s Radiohead , NIN, Queens of The Stone Age, Tool and the two Jimmys’ (Page and Hendrix) with a notable mention to Dave Gilmore. It’s hard though, I’ve been influenced by a heap of bands that I still listen to today. I could be hear all day naming people. Once you find an artist you go and find out who influenced them, it’ a never ending cycle.
Van Gogh. Can’t pick just one for music
You are backstage with ‘insert artist you adore or hate’, what do you say?
Kanye West can you please shut the fuck up
Where do you see Aussie music heading?
I’m really not sure, I’m hoping away from the computer. Hopefully, more performers and lesson button pushers. Don’t get me wrong there is a lot of talent in some of them and I enjoy it, wish more of them would use it as an instrument and less of a cheat.
I think we might be on the bottom of a cycle. The music industry is playing catch up with the internet and more home production and electronic music is flying around. We also have the reality music TV shows that are finally loosing their appeal. I believe that one band will come along and start up a big music movement again like Oasis did for the UK in the 90 s. Maybe it’s time for the smaller independent labels to rise as the big ones struggle. It’s music so you just have to wait and let it do its thing.
What are your future plans for 2016/2017
We are looking at playing as many shows as possible, doing what we love. Work on new material continue to work on us as band and just do what we do.
Tour Drink Sleep Repeat. Play shows keep writing and most importantly, enjoy it.
Slow Club New Album “One Day All Of This Won’t Matter Anymore”
Available 19 August 2016
Out on Moshi Moshi/Planet
How do you keep a band interesting after ten years? It’s a question Slow Club’s Charles Watson and Rebecca Taylor must have asked
themselves as they started work on their fourth album.The answer
seems to be producer Matthew E. White, the master of Southern-
gothic folk, whose in-house band at Richmond’s Spacebomb Studios
provided the consistency and tone the album required. Almost every
track was played live in the studio, allowing the long-established
session band’s natural chemistry to augment Charles and Rebecca’s,
with the double advantage of recording being very effective, and also comparatively quick.
“One Day…” contains some of the best melodies they’ve yet created.
The duo’s knack for writing hooks and melody has, if anything,
become stronger. There are choruses here you instantly feel you’ve
known your whole life, like ‘Ancient Rolling Seas’ timeless, reassuring refrain of “I’ll Always Be By Your Side”, or ‘Champion‘s Dolly Parton via- Linda Ronstadt anthem of self-celebration through the darkest times.
Perhaps best of all are a pair of songs to be found at the top of what
traditionalists would call “side 2”- ‘Rebecca Casanova’, a slice of
widescreen, four-to-the-floor pop that recalls soft-rock giants
Fleetwood Mac in the way it channels heartbreak onto the dance floor, and ‘Tattoo Of The King’, a tale that takes Neil Young and the Doobie Brothers to the disco.