“Do I wanna be here? … Do I really enjoy this? … Is this what I want to do more than anything else?” These are the questions pondered from time to time by Jarrad Brown, lead vocalist and chief songwriter of Melbourne’s Eagle and the Worm. Luckily the answer was still a resounding YES when I caught up with Jarrad to chat about his creative process, recording at the much-loved Sing Sing Studios and why feeling nervous can sometimes be a good thing.
“We’ve been working on a new album at the Sing Sing South in Melbourne since late last year. It’s a beautiful space and the people that own it are really accommodating. It’s a great place to record. We’ve been really free to develop ideas, write and jam there.
“We started out with just a few simple concepts, but I wanted it to be an extremely hands-on process. I wanted the music to come alive through the chemistry and input of other creative voices. Whether from others in the band or the engineer or from people in the production side, it’s been really fun and invigorating. And it’s resulted in an impressive body of work – we’ve recorded about twenty-three songs so far!”
Although Jarrad couldn’t divulge exactly when we’ll be able to get our hands on the finished product, he hinted that their upcoming slot at the Kyneton Music Festival will be the perfect opportunity to showcase new material and iron out any kinks in their live show before they hit the road on a national tour.
“We haven’t played many shows in the last few months because we’ve been preparing our album, so it’s a BIG opportunity for us to play a lot of our new stuff. We’re headlining as well. I think we’re closing the first night, so we couldn’t be happier. We’re pumped. We’ve never played at Kyneton before, but I’m stoked we’ll be able to do this.
“I think it’s essential to get out and play new stuff as soon as possible, not to leave them as a bunch of songs on a hard-drive, but actually bring them into the real world. It’s something we’re all looking forward to.”
Since their formation, Eagle and the Worm have continued to delight audiences around Australia, as well as garnering a strong following across the UK and Europe thanks to their energetic live performances.
“Although there’ve been a few line-up changes, the passion within the band is still the same. When I walk on stage I feel the same excitement I’ve always felt – and I know the others do too. That’s why asking those questions I mentioned earlier is so important. That’s what keeps Eagle and the Worm going.”
Expect to see a lot more of them in the coming months, as Jarrad and company plan to up the ante in 2014: “We plan to be busier this year. We spent a lot of last year working out what we wanted as a band and how we were going to do it. Now we have plans in place and things will start happening soon. We all love playing and touring together. It’s a very exciting time for us as a band.
“Whenever we release anything new there’s a lot of emotions; of course, there are always a few nerves, but in a good way. I think being nervous about what you do is healthy. It says that you care about what you’re doing, and I can tell you I’m a little nervous!” Jarrad laughed.
“But we can’t wait for the Kyneton Festival – I love performing. We’ll be well-rehearsed and we’ve been working really hard, so it’ll be rewarding to finally showcase our work.”
Now in its third year, the Kyneton Music Festival will be host to over 40 bands across 14 venues. This little town in the Macedon Ranges, located an hour-and-a-half north of Geelong, will be overrun by music lovers for three days this month as historic buildings, cafés, pubs and galleries are turned into live music venues.
Joining Eagle and the Worm will be The Last Drinks, Chris Russell’s Chicken Walk, Pony Face, Suzannah Espie, Raised by Eagles, Fraser A. Gorman, Ooga Boogas, Ben Mason, Saint Jude, Apes, The Bluebottles, Yeo, Dan Parsons, James Kenyon, The Spoils and many more.
Soak up the last days of summer and support our local venues and musicians – go to kynetonmusicfestival.com.au for more information.
When&Where: Kyneton Music Festival – February 28 through March 2
Written by Natalie Rogers