The Acfields

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The Acfields

From harmonising on car trips in their childhood to harmonising on stage in their adulthood, music has always played a key role in the lives of the Acfield siblings. Although they travel well as individual artists, when they team up it makes for something special, as we discovered.
Hello guys, thanks for taking some time out to have a chat to Forte Magazine. First of all, can you introduce your lovely selves and tell us your profession in life?
Hello! We’re Dan and Hannah Acfield, known as ‘The Acfields’. We’re a sibling duo who write and perform music together heavily featuring vocal harmonies.
Obviously you guys are from a musical family, being a brother and sister team. How did music make its way into both of your lives? Was there a musical parent in the house?
Both our parents play guitar, sing and write music. For most of our childhood we didn’t have a TV, although they made an appearance every now and then. Music was a big part of our household. It goes back generations on both sides of the family.
You guys reside in different parts of Australia – Dan (Brisbane) and Hannah (Melbourne) – yet you still manage to make tunes together. How do you go dealing with the distance issue?
Lots of sound files getting sent back and forward, long sessions sharing ideas on speaker phone. Honestly, it can be difficult at times. We speak a LOT on the phone and have regular ‘team meetings’. During our writing phase for the album we emailed each other a new song every two weeks.
We came up with an agreement that if the song wasn’t submitted by Sunday night midnight, there was no coffee or tea allowed for the following fortnight! Ruthless I know. We also set time aside to meet up and write together.
Tell us about you new single, ‘Grabbed My Heart’. Was this one of the tracks you guys did in Mornington?
We recorded everything but the vocals for this track in a friend’s house on the Mornington. Hannah got sick so we did the vocals in a studio in Brisbane over Christmas.
Actually, we recorded the vocals simultaneously in different vocal booths with a glass window so we could see each other. It’s the first time we’ve recorded the vocals that way. Normally you layer the vocals one at a time.
You guys have released a lot of stuff as solo artists. What was the catalyst to joining forces?
We were both heading in the same direction separately. Originally we recorded a couple of songs together as a bit of an experiment and it grew from there. It made sense to pool our resources! There is something special that happens when we sing together. We’re better together.
How would you describe your sound? Has either one of you had to make concessions in your styles to compensate or fit with the other? (A bit of sibling rivalry from time to time?)
Folk/pop/alt-country would describe us. Dan tends to write songs that are a bit ‘rockier’. And in the studio I have been known as the ‘Rock Nazi’. However, I think without Dan I’d probably be more country. Folk is a nice middle ground.
And briefly, the forthcoming album? When is that due and how is working on that ATM?
The album is mixed and mastered with a few final tweaks to go. It’s out September 1. The album is self-produced, which was a first for us and really fun. It’s exciting – we think it’s the best thing both of us have done. We’ve worked hard on the songwriting, the production and making sure things were done exactly how we wanted.
The big tour starts soon and you will be in Ballarat. Are you excited about touring together?
Touring is always fun! Playing live is always a highlight for us, we love meeting new people and sharing our music. It’s our first time in Ballarat so we’re looking forward to it.
What do you have in store for those attending the gig at Babushka?
Think delicious harmonies, new songs and a couple of oldies.
When&Where: Babushka, Ballarat – May 23