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The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world
Morgan Bain - Interview
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MORGAN BAIN



Alternative soul artist Morgan Bain who recently performed at the West Coast Blues & Roots festival in Perth will be continuing his tour around Australia starting on the 17th April in Perth before heading around the country. Morgan is also about to release his new single "Why Don't You Stay" which comes off his latest EP "What You Believe" so we caught up with this rising artist to discuss it all.

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Andrew: Hey how's it going?

Morgan: Good man, yourself?

Andrew: Yeah good thanks. So the big thing that happened with you recently was the West Coast BLues & Roots Festival so how was that?

Morgan: Amazing! It went really well. I was actually very sick before and the week leading up to it because there was a tour and I kinda got a little bit ill, a bit of a cold but I kinda put my poker face on and managed to get through it. The audience semed to love it so it went really well considering the circumstances!

Andrew: I guess it's one of those thngs in the music business where you can't really call in sick and you kinda have to play through it I suppose.

Morgan: Yeah you got to do it but nobody could tell that I was sick haha!

Andrew: Haha! Did you find from your perspective that it affected your performance a little bit?

Morgan: No you kinda forget about it when you're up there, you're concentrating on too many things. Like you're concentrating on singing and concentrating on playing and all that kind of things.

Andrew: So was this one of, if not the biggest show you had ever done?

Morgan: One of. The other one that was pretty major was done supports for people like Xavier Rudd and Missy Higgins and Chisel and they've all been quite big gigs. But the fact that I even got on the West Coast Blues & Roots bill was actually quite a big deal in general.

Andrew: As far as the other artists and bands that were playing that day, was there anyone that you are a particularly big fan of?

Morgan: Paolo Nutini definitely. His new record inspired me a lot.

Andrew: Was there anyone you checked out as well while you were there?

Morgan: Well a lot of people actually like David Gray and Paolo Nutini and Keb' Mo' and that kind of thing. Everybody was just amazing!

Andrew: I guess one of the good things about a festival is you get to check out bands that you wouldn't normally see so was there any big surprises there that kinda blew you away?

Morgan: hmmm I would say maybe Beth Hart.

Andrew: Yeah I have heard of her!

Morgan: Yeah she is absolutely amazing! Ridiculous!

Andrew: So how did it feel to be playing with all these great bands? It must be a bit of an adrenaline rush I guess.

Morgan: Yeah definitely! Definitely scary as well because if you're the first band on there, you kinda have to set the standard. One of my mates was playing after me, Kim Churchill and he's an amazing act as well and so him after, I was like I really have to lift my game for this gig.

Andrew: And now you have a bunch of shows coming up, a couple in Perth and then around the country. So what can the fans expect on this tour?

Morgan: I would say just a lot of light and shade in the music that I am currently writing which is soul music and writing all kinds of different soul music at this time. I used to write a lot of blues and roots kind of stuff and brought out a lot of records like that with blues, roots and rock and stuff like that but this next song I suppose has been really dark and moody and all that kind of stuff. So there is some dark stuff in there but there is some really light kind of playful stuff in there too.

Andrew: What do you think has been the main reason for the dark stuff, where is all that coming from?

Morgan: I'm just getting into that kind of music, like that very cinematic kind of movie music. I'm loving that at the moment.




Andrew: And you've been around the country before and done shows on the east coast?

Morgan: Yeah lots.

Andrew: I know you're from Perth originally so how do you find the crowds over there compared to here?

Morgan: I find that because we do a lot of bigger gigs in W.A. I find that it's very awesome to play over there because everyone is complete strangers and you kinda have to work a little harder to get people's attention. It actually makes me work harder as a player and it also makes me think I'm the smallest fish in the sea which is a great thing to know and to keep telling yourself because you're constantly working harder. But I love playing to complete strangers, it's great.

Andrew: So the first time you played over there, was it a little daunting for you or was it a natural kind of thing for you?

Morgan: Yeah definitely, it was a bit of a daunting thing on the first tour but it was more excitement than daunting. It wasn't a negative thing, it was a positive thing and then straight after that it was just all great. I've always been very natural performing, it's not been like a push for me or anything, I love performing.

Andrew: Yeah I guess that has to be a natural feeling for any artist because otherwise if you're a completely shy person then I guess playing music in front of other people would not be the first thing you would want to do.

Morgan: No definitely not.

Andrew: So take us back to when you started and some of your influences and that knd of stuff. How did you get into music and who inspired you to get into it?

Morgan: I had quite a few family members who played music, my cousin and my Nan the opera singer and still is...she still teaches a choir. So that was a big influence on me because she used to play piano and sing and then one of my cousins has been in lots of bands so that was a big influence.

Andrew: Has there been any particular artist that you got into?

Morgan: My biggest influences would be Stevie Wonder, Bill Withers and Donnie Hathaway.

Andrew: What was it about them that got you hooked?

Morgan: Just soul music, just soul.

Andrew: Stevie Wonder especially, he's a great performer. I see what you mean as he's got such a great feel for music so I can understand why you would be influenced by him.

Morgan: Yeah!

Andrew: Any particular abum from Stevie Wonder that you really love?

Morgan: Not really no. But I mean "Songs From The Key Of Life" is a huge album but probably "Talking Book" or "Innivervisions". I like both of those albums a lot.

Andrew: In what way was does he or anyone really, inspire or influence on your live playing?

Morgan: Just something that is really great entertaining-wise.

Andrew: So the performance more than the music itself then?

Morgan: No definitely not. I think you can't really perform great unless the groove is great and you kinda have to put on a show but it's also understandably hard to put on a great show if the groove is not happening or if the band is not happening and stuff like that which is why me and my band rehearse so much. I really do love performing and getting people involved and that kind of thing.

Andrew: So I'm guessing you probably prefer to play live than recording.

Morgan: No definitely not. They're both very different to me, I like certain things about each kind of concept.




Andrew: You're music can be quite loose sometimes so is there room for improvisation when you play live?

Morgan: Definitely! There's a lot of that especially for the older songs that I still play, there's a lot of improvisation and a lot of jamming still. That's the fun part about it.

Andrew: Is that how you create songs as well, by jamming?

Morgan: Yeah a lot of the time but also coming up with a main idea and expanding on it and I suppose you kinda have to jam by yourself to have that happen.

Andrew: When you do perform some of the older songs, do you find the songs change drastically the more you perform them?

Morgan: Sometimes yeah. There's a few songs that have changed dramatically over the years with just certain things that I have put in there or played them on different instruments.

Andrew: OK so just going back to your influences quickly again, we have a question that we try to ask everyone and it's always interesting to see what answers they come up with. For any classic album in history, if you could be a fly on the wall for, what album would that be?

Morgan: Any Michael Jackson album!

Andrew: Nothing in particular?

Morgan: Nothing in particular, any Michael Jackson album.

Andrew: OK why is that?

Morgan: Just because I think the dude was a genius and I would have loved to of seen how fast his mind went and especially him working with his producer. I would have loved to have seen something like that so yeah Michael Jackson. Some of his tunes have influenced me quite a lot too.

Andrew: Yeah I think he is influential on just about everybody in one way or another.

Morgan: Yeah definitely!

Andrew: And for you, what is the meaning of life?

Morgan: That is one of those questions that I have never been able to give a straight answer for. I'm not really entirely sure, I think that there doesn't have to be any meaning except for the fact that there's certain things that you love and there's certain things that make you happy and I think if everybody were to concentrate on doing those things, and that would probably explain why you are here. And it's not really the meaning of life, I think the question that everybody needs to ask themselves is what is the meaning of your life. So the meaning of my life is to play music and that's my life. Because we're all very individual in that sense.

Andrew: Absolutely and it's funny because music is one of those universal things that no matter where you are from on this planet, it's one of those things that everybody can connect to.

Morgan: Definitely! The meaning of my life is to play music, that's what mine is.

Andrew: That's good to hear, it's awesome that you up there playing in front of crowds! It's been a pleasure talking to you today so thanks again!

Morgan: Thanks mate, cheers!

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Morgan Bain tour dates:

FRI 17 APRIL | INDI BAR, SCARBOROUGH | 18+
FRI 24 APRIL | ODD FELLOW BAR, FREMANTLE | 18+
THURS 30 APRIL | EXETER, ADELAIDE SA | 18+
FRI 1 MAY |YAH YAH's FITZROY, VIC | 18+
SAT 2 MAY | SOOKI LOUNGE, BELGRAVE VIC| 18+
SUN 3 MAY | THE B-EAST, EAST BRUNSWICK VIC | 18+
THURS 7 MAY | THE REPUBLIC BAR, NORTH HOBART TAS | 18+
FRI 8 MAY | ROYAL OAK, LAUNCESTON TAS | 18+
SAT 9 MAY | THE LASS O'GOWRIE HOTEL, WICKHAM NSW | 18+
SUN 10 MAY | TOWRADJI BEACH HOTEL, WOLLONGONG NSW | 18+
THURS 14 MAY | FRANKIES PIZZA BY THE SLICE, SYDNEY NSW | 18+
FRI 15 MAY | THE GRAND JUNCTION HOTEL (THE JUNKYARD) MAITLAND NSW | 18+
SAT 16 MAY | SYDNEY BLUES & ROOTS FESTIVAL, FITZROY HOTEL, WINDSOR NSW |18+


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Interview by Andrew "Schizodeluxe" Massie on April 14th 2015