Daniel Aaron; if you don't know the name, now is the time to start paying attention.
With an upload of his debut single ‘Running Backwards’ to triple j Unearthed back in February this year, Daniel Aaron was cast into the view of the Australian public after winning the triple j Unearthed competition to score him a slot on the 2018 Groovin the Moo lineup, among acts like Paul Kelly, Ball Park Music, Grinspoon and more.
Joining the ranks of past Unearthed winners including legends like SAFIA, Coda Conduct and Timberwolf, Daniel graced the main stage at the regional festival and soon cemented himself as one of Australia’s finest emerging acts.
“That was amazing,” he recalls vivaciously. “It was definitely one of the best opportunities I’ve had with music to date. The day itself was just really chill and I got to meet a lot of my favourite bands. The set itself went really well too. I thought I was going to be really nervous and make a mistake – I was really worried about that – but it actually went really well.
“I’ve never played in that environment before with the festival vibes; it was definitely the best time,” he continues. “The weather was good, the set went well, it was a real sign for me. After that, I was like ‘oh man I’ve gotta do that again’.”
Discovering the world of music at a young age, the self-taught artist has quickly developed a stage presence that will surely have you captivated. Those who were lucky enough to catch the solo multi-instrumentalist’s dynamic set at GTM would understand why he often is described at the next Tash Sultana. It’s his unique, homegrown style that draws the comparison; creating a high-energy atmosphere through the use of intricate looping, similar to that of Tash, which has him well on the way to achieving imminent success as a one-person powerhouse.
“It all started when one of my friends introduced me to a loop station and I really liked that concept; being on my own I thought it could be really fun, then I started to get into Tash Sultana and listen to her music and became very very aware and fond of looping and that’s what really got me into it.”
With looping allowing Daniel to create a colourful contrast of country boy and city beats, it didn’t stop there. Delving further into his indie-folk and alt-rock sound and taking influence from Ocean Alley, Xavier Rudd and of course Tash Sultana, the dexterous multi-instrumentalist incorporates genre-bending melodies, airy guitars, synth, and has even taken on the illustrious didgeridoo to become the one-man atmosphere making machine he is now.
“That, as is the case with most of the instruments I’ve learnt, I just wanted to learn it so I did. I was really intrigued but didn’t know where to start. So, I just got a spur of motivation one day and went out to the shed and cut a piece of polypipe up to size and made a mouthpiece out of two-part epoxy putty stuff and that was my didgeridoo. That’s what I taught myself on. I’ve still got that, but I do have some actual didgeridoos that I play now.”
Hailing from a small rural farming community in Pyramid Hill, it was Daniel’s pursuit of music – and clear passion – that soon saw him leave the small town in his later teenage years and relocate to Bendigo to further explore the regional music scene.
“I didn’t really connect with the place and I was really keen to get out of there and chase the music a bit more,” he explains. “I thought Bendigo would be a good place to start; there’s a good little music scene here for me to bounce off and I didn’t want to go too far away to a place where I’d have to try and build a fan base from scratch again. I’d already made a bit of an impression around this region so I thought Bendigo would be perfect to kick off in.”
Discovering all that the region has to offer, Daniel is keeping the ball rolling and is taking his bold new single ‘Mind Garden’ to Victorian horizons over the next few months.
“I just wanted to keep some momentum going after Groovin The Moo; I wanted to grab that by the horns and make the most out of it and out of the time after it,” he explains. “I got straight into recording another single and then started organising this tour and whatnot. This is just another stepping stone in taking my music to the next level. Keeping in mind that I am still very much emerging on this tour and it’s very much about starting to build that fan base, I just want to focus on getting my music out there,” he smiles.
With a love for both the stage and the studio, the 18 year old will be bunkering down for the last part of the year writing new music for a future release, along with focusing on performing at more alternative venues better suited to the pace of his music.
“That gig at Groovin, I’d take that over absolutely anything, and that’s what I want to be doing more of,” he beams. “I definitely do love just sitting at home writing though; it just takes you to another place. Right now, it’s about finding a balance of performing and writing for me.
“One things for sure is I’m going to focus on getting some new music out there and working on an EP or an album.”
Until then, catch Daniel at one of his upcoming gigs for his ‘Mind Garden’ single tour. If you’re a fan of Matt Corby or Tash Sultana, you’ll soon be a Daniel Aaron fan too.
When & Where: The Workers Club, Geelong – August 31, The Gypsy Bar, Echuca – September 2, Aireys Pub, Aireys Inlet – September 8, Handle Bar, Bendigo – September 21 and The Taproom, Castlemaine – October 5.
Written by Talia Rinaldo