Christopher Coleman Collective

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Christopher Coleman Collective

The Christopher Coleman Collective is the perfect way to describe namesake Christopher Coleman’s band, one which has an ever-changing line-up from one show to the next as he collects whoever is available to play, making every show unique.
“It certainly helps with keeping the shows fresh and spontaneous,” explains Coleman. “It’s good because it’s not about someone replicating a part that somebody else did; it’s very much the additions’ personality bringing their own interpretations to it.”
Having limited resources means the band’s line-up often consists of whoever is willing – and being able to make friends around the country becomes a major asset.
“Naturally, being independent and this being a first album there isn’t a budget to really bring people at all,” says Coleman. “If people are willing to come off their own back then absolutely that would be ideal, but because I’ve played around for a while I’ve kind of got friends in places who are often willing to just come up for a night and have a play. And the songs are simple, so it’s not a difficult process for them to deal with.”
And despite the ever-changing line-up, the combination of straightforward material and talented players means the shows go on without a hitch.
“I can’t recall a show just flopping because of a player not really knowing what they are doing,” says Coleman. “I guess I’m lucky that the ambition has been matched with players who are really good at what they do.”
Coleman will be playing around the country in March and April as he promotes his self-titled album – which will be released on March 14 – and after 25 months working on the tracks Coleman is confident his debut album is ready.
“There’s not really anxiety about what people will think of the album, more out of my own personal anxiety about is this something that I’m happy with,” says Coleman. “Self-doubt about certain takes or certain songs; some got re-recorded and some got ditched all together and some were written the day before the session. There was just a lot of indecision around the whole process, but in the end I think it worked out and we came out with a well-balanced record.”
The more than two-year process making the album was a battle for Coleman, who at times struggled to find the desire to go on.
“The recoding process and the hours spent tracking really doesn’t justify a two-year period,” says Coleman. “It was more around me falling in and out of love with the project and why I was doing it in the first place. I’d like to think that the first album is the hardest to make.”
Coleman is used to personal battles and is refreshingly open about his own struggles. He was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at 22-years-old, and is doing his best to shed some light on an often ignored topic.
“I feel it’s good to be open because so many people feel like it’s a negative or a curse, or have a façade of having their shit together and being strong and confident,” says Coleman. “I think that everybody deals with it to a certain extent, and an open conversation can’t be a bad thing.”
When&Where: Music Man Megastore, Bendigo – March 20 & Shebeen, Melbourne – March 21
Written by Zach Broadhurst