Hayley Mary, the former Jezabels frontwoman has much on her plate currently. Her debut EP, The Piss, The Perfume, is creating a lot of interest and there are gigs galore coming up to show off these exciting new tunes.
But with the country currently being ravaged by fire and flood and everything in between, Mary feels slightly uncomfortable being in the middle of a heavy promotion period with so much destruction going on.
“It does feel strange with a backdrop of the whole country burning. Feels quite weird doing so much self-promotion. But when you are successful, you can end up helping more in these situations.”
It seems for Mary, the constant promotion, interviews and early feedback from the tunes has left her with an excitement that is hard to temper. But being a solo artist does come with a whole new lot of problems and responsibilities.
“There are a lot more bills as a solo artist, and you have to sell yourself a lot more. I feel proud of myself though. With great power comes great responsibility. I have done the democratic band thing in the past. Now I have to try and be in control,” she says.
“When you make a mistake as a solo artist, and it is just you, you can only blame yourself.”
Mary’s journey to this new EP has seen her ditch, well try to at least, the way things were done in the Jezabels, and the method of creating music.
“I started writing songs with an acoustic guitar to start; picking my roots up again and in a way going back to my childhood dreams.
“I’ve also learned some good lessons, like the degrees of success, means you feel like you’ve never really succeeded.
“You can get caught up in certain shit.”
Mary spent a year in Scotland, the old country, to refresh and also get back to the roots of what she enjoys. And it was that environment that not only inspired her musically but gave her a new sense of identity.
“I wrote a lot in Scotland – a substantial amount. I got a cafe job there and just went back to basics. I did feel like I needed to get on with writing songs quickly though to avoid spending too long in the cafe.
“I wrote five tracks in a month in the end. I sent them off to record company I Oh You and they liked them and signed me.”
For the title of the EP Mary took her experiences of briefly living above a pub as the title – “I was living above a pub and that was just a track. It basically comes from that.”
The Piss The Perfume is out now through I Oh You Records, and stay tuned for some gig announcements soon heading deeper into 2020.
Written by Chris Michaels