Up close with Nashville’s Leo Rondeau

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Up close with Nashville’s Leo Rondeau

Hi Leo, thanks so much for chatting to Forte. Congrats on the release of your album Right On Time, earlier this year. How has it been having that out in the world?
It’s great to have music out of your head and into the world. There’s a lot that goes into the whole process so there are also feelings of relief and a freeing up of mental resources to start working on the next thing.

Who/what were some of your influences and inspirations for the album?
I like recording with a band in the studio without much overdubbing so it was important to keep that feel. There were a lot of influences pulled into this but overall I wanted the songs to all work together and for it to have a cohesive sound throughout. Working with Andrija at Bombshelter really helped it give it a sound.

Your recent tours have your shows quite close together, rather than spread out over a long period. What do you love about getting on the road and performing night after night?
The music industry demands that you play night after night to make it all feasible. Travel is not cheap in general especially if you’re rolling with a band or if I’m flying to another country. And it’s good just to stay busy and not have too much time to think about the absurdity of the whole operation. If I have a day off I like it to be scheduled and have a reason like rest, sightseeing, staying at friends…

Your music has seen you dancing in the streets of New Orleans during Mardi Gras, to the madness of SXSW, to the West Texas Desert, to Stonehenge, Ireland, and drinking in the oldest pub in England this year. What’s been the highlight of your career so far?
All of those things you mentioned were amazing but my two life highlights so far this year were playing my friend’s wedding in Austin TX and surprising my mum for her birthday in North Dakota.

Are you working on anything new right now?
I’m finishing up an EP that focuses on the Turtle Mountains and some characters up there. I hope to start releasing songs on that by early next year. I’m also writing for another record that I hope to get recorded next year. I’ll stay busy I reckon.

You’re heading down under this month for a 13-date tour, including a stop at Pistol Pete’s in Geelong. Have you visited Australia before?
This will be my 3rd time. I love it there and have made some really wonderful friends. I just wish it was about half the distance away.

What are you looking forward to with this tour? What can punters expect from your performances?
Seeing all of my friends for sure and trying to get Australians to dance.

The dates are quite close for this tour too, will you be having any time off afterward to explore Australia or are you heading back home?
I’ll get some time on the end to do some visiting then I’ll make some stops on the way home as well.

Thanks so much for chatting! To finish off, what’s one thing you love about Australia?
Boxed wine.

When & Where: Pistol Pete’s Food n Blues, Geelong – September 21, Major Tom’s, Kyneton – September 28 & Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine – September 29.