Aside from campaigning to cancel lock out laws in Sydney and fighting for music industry rights in general, the trio – made up of Jim Finn, Dan McNamee and Dan Williams – have added another string to their bow as ambassadors for the month-long event of gigs for good, Oxjam.
Hey guys, thanks for taking the time to chat with us, how are you and what are you up to at the moment?
We’re well! Spending our winter super busy at the AVS lab writing and recording. Wanna get some new stuff out ASAP and are keen for people to hear it.
So you’ve recently been announced as ambassadors for Oxjam, how did you get on board with the charity and what did you know about them before that?
We knew that Oxfam was a worldwide organisation that dealt with helping the poor. Was psyched to hear they wanted to work with us on the Oxjam campaign. It’s a fun, unique campaign involving parties and music – so I couldn’t think of a more perfect fit for us.
The video clip announcing the news looked like a lot of fun, did you all come up with the concept gigs? What was the actual filming process like?
The filming was a blast. Super professional crew and well thought out concepts (mostly the director’s ideas). Got to dress as a spoon, hang out with Meg Washo and eat jelly beans all day so was pretty cruisy as far as AVS video shoots go.
If there were no limits to what you could do, what would be the ideal/dream gig you’d like to put on?
Would love to play a gig in a Planetarium, or do a live silent disco. Or a gig in a blimp.
For those who may be new to putting on a gig, what do you think are three key things they should keep in mind?
Look the peoples in the eyes, but not one person for too long. Try not to drink the headliners beer (without asking). Play with passion!
We know you’re very passionate about the lockout laws from your hometown of Sydney and pill testing, what do you think those at home could do to try and help these situations?
There’s a broader question implied there regarding how people interact with their government and its institutions in our democracy. You can contact your local member via email or phone to let them know your feelings about any issue that affects you. That’s whether you’re pro or anti lockout laws and pill testing. We believe there’s a balance between protecting the public and allowing culture to flourish and that the two aren’t mutually exclusive.
There was also a recording studio that you recently campaigned for, do you feel like with your position in the industry you feel responsible for standing up for what you believe in?
Love the Team America World Police scene where Janine Garofolo says “…as actors, it is our responsibility to read the newspapers, and then say what we read on television like it’s our own opinion”. We try to avoid commenting on things we know nothing about! Sometimes however there are issues that come up that we feel fit to comment on as they affect us personally or we think we have a perspective that constructively ads to the debate because of our direct experience. At the end of the day though, we’re a band and our main focus is the music, so we try to keep the ranting and polemicising to a bare minimum. It’s hard though….
What kind of effect do you think something like Oxjam has on the music industry?
I think it helps foster an enthusiasm amongst musos and the larger industry to get behind charitable campaigns done in a creative way.
Thanks again for taking time to chat with us, is there anything else you’d like to add before we finish up?
New music coming soon stay tuned.
For more information on Oxjam and details about how you can put on your own gig visit www.oxjam.org.au. Oxjam is held throughout August and raises money for the work of Oxfam Australia.
Oxjam Brainstorm with Forte
From the scarred memories of past unsuccessful parties where no one drank the punch, we’ve thought of a few ideas to get you started on your own gig this upcoming Oxjam month. We’ll be flattered if you make these a reality.
1.A Metal Roast: We’ve seen them do roasts in America to much entertainment, so let’s bring it to Oz. Gather your friends for a an hour or so of insulting each on stage, before getting a metal band as the headliners to relieve all that anger you’ve developed from the evening.
2. A Psych Art Sesh: Grab your nearest psych rock band, turn the lights off, get some crazy coloured party lights and paint away as the music goes on. Bonus points for those who body paint.
3. Backyard Bash: In an homage to the great house parties Forte staff have been to, create your own. Set up a DJ under a marquee and have your own mini bush doof (permitting your yard has actual trees).
4. Wine and Chill: Kind of like Netflix and chill with music…and wine. This one’s for those who want something a bit low-key. Have an open mic night, thought strip it right back to acoustic. Take turns as you strum your guitar, sing some tunes and sip on a glass of merlot.
5. The Musical Showdown: Who doesn’t love a good battle of the bands comp? For this variation, get solo artists up on stage to play two song interchangeably and see who the audience votes as the best. The winner of the overall competition gets an abundance of glory and adoration from fans.