Pierce Brothers: The Twins Taking Their Music From The Street

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Pierce Brothers: The Twins Taking Their Music From The Street

Melbourne folk-pop duo Pierce Brothers have taken their irresistible energy and music from the streets of Melbourne to the rest of the world, playing sell out shows and performing at some of the best festivals. We chat to Jack Pierce about their grass-roots approach, Swagger Music Festival, and band mate and twin brother Patrick.

Hey guys, thanks for taking the time to chat with us, how are you and what are you up to at the moment? Hello! We’re great! We’ve just arrived home and are adjusting to jetlag. Europe was exhausting! We have a month off before we hit the studio to finish our debut album; so we’re focusing on our writing at the moment.

We know you’ve been gallivanting around the world. What was the transition like from busking on the streets to playing venues around the world? The transition was actually quite strange. We often reminisce how much easier it was back when all we had to worry about was what day we’d go busking, and what day we’d go surfing or hiking or whatever. But touring now is incredible. The places and audiences we have played are a dream come true. Our performance on stage actually takes a lot of its inspiration from a busking environment. We always had to make the audience look at us while busking, so on stage we just had more people looking at us, and it just meant we had to make more people dance or smile.

You’ve also been campaigning for a bit of busking back home, what impact do you think the mayor’s decision to ban amplified busking on Swanston street will have on musicians?
The Mayor’s reasoning is not out of the realms of reality. We all need to enjoy and share the city with small business and pedestrians. There is already a street trading team that enforces noise levels of buskers and busking times. Storefronts and buskers (both traders) are encouraged to engage with the Street Trading Team and work together. More enforcement and communication was the key to a solution, not taking the buskers away all together. They are a crucial cultural part of Melbourne’s vibrate community.

How important was busking for you as musicians?
Busking was a massive part of our music. It changed how we performed our songs; which in turn helped our stage performing. Busking is the whole reason we ever got a foot in the door, do a ticketed show; or tour in a new city. We’d go somewhere, busk and sell CDs, and plug a show. Busking is an integral part of music in Australia and we’re always thankful for the opportunities it gave us.

You’re playing at the Swagger Music Festival in October, and we heard there’s a communal artist/punter tent on the grounds, do you think you’ll be using it? What do you think of the concept?
Swagger Music Festival is one of our favourite festivals and we can’t WAIT to get up there. The line up this year is INSANE! I think we’ll definitely end up getting in there at some point – drunk or sober. I love the concept to get up and jam with artists and punters. It really emphasizes what that festival is all about – a bunch of cool people getting together and doing something cool!

Being in a band with your brother, would you say there are more sibling clashes with your music or things outside of it?
Oh Jesus! More sibling clashes with fucking EVERYTHING! We’re very good at winding each other up, and it drives our tour managers crazy. I think it’s because we just live out of each others pocket; something that would be difficult for any two people, but for brothers who can say anything, it can be a recipe for disaster.

What’s the craziest thing that happened on your recent Europe/UK tour? The last show we thought we’d be doing a very little stage at a small festival. We had no idea that we were playing to 21,000 people on the main stage at 4:30 in the afternoon. It blew our minds!

Thanks again for taking the time to chat with us, any words of wisdom you’d like to leave our readers with? Get out in nature. Naked. Often.

When & Where: Swagger Music Festival, Wandiligong – October 21, 22 & 23