The man, the myth, the legend Nick Oliveri (Queens Of The Stone Age/Kyuss) returns to Australia this July, teaming up with Russian punk sensations SVETLANAS for what will be their first ever joint tour down under. We chat to Nick ahead of the tour.
You’ve just been touring the US with Mondo Generator and Europe with the Dwarves, then coming down under with Russian punk sensations Svetlanas. What are some of your favorite memories of Australia? Who are you looking forward to playing the most?
Well, I gotta say I did an acoustic tour some time ago. I played 28 shows in 28 days. That was a pretty memorable time. Also playing with them was in Perth 2004. That was pretty memorable. I tried to go swimming in the ocean and I did, and then I had blisters on my ears ‘cause the sun is so damn hot. I was only out there for 40 minutes, but I was a lobster by the end of it.
Being on tour can be tough on mental health. How do you go with touring and do you have any strategies to keep your spirits up?
Well, today I’m kind of tired, but I drank some spirits and I guess my spirits’ up. No, it’s like any other job really, I mean, you know, this jobs the best job in the world so it’s not a bad thing and I am pretty lucky to be able to do it. That’s what keeps my spirits up: realizing that this is the greatest job ever. If I was on a roof, I’d be really miserable, so this is much better.
Kyuss was back in 1990s for you. Did you ever expect to still be playing Kyuss songs all these years later?
I never knew that Kyuss was going to be a thing, you know, 20 years after the fact. I’m excited and very happy that it is because when I was in the band in 1990, 91, 92, nobody liked us. Very few people liked us. I remember the people that came to see us play and so it wasn’t a whole lot of people and yeah, but we liked what we were doing, so that’s all that mattered. Super happy we can play these songs later.
What advice would you give to someone who was starting out now?
Stop. Don’t continue. No, I’m kidding. The music business will eat you up. There is no business anymore in music really. Do it cause you love it. That’s my advice. Don’t expect to make a million bucks because the days of big record deals and things like that are gone, you know. You can do it yourself and go out and find it yourself. Don’t wait for somebody to sign you.
I do records myself and sell myself at the shows and try to make a couple of bucks just to make the next record, you know? So, do it yourself like I’m doing. I’ve had to change how I do things and the Interwebs kind of took their music away from us in our record stores and our good time, you know. When I get my $2.50 check for digital sales, I’m very happy and I go get myself almost a pack of cigarettes and I smile about it cause I got paid to play music. It used to be a bigger check, but hey, what are you going to do? Life is hard. I go out and play live more now and I’m at 47 years old. It’s harder to do than it used to be, but I love it and I’ll never stop.
When & Where: Cherry Bar, Melbourne – July 10 & 11