The Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire

Fifteen revealing questions submitted to well-known musicians or newcomers to the game which they can answer seriously or as silly as they please.

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THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Quail State aka Jono Aidney

3 Mar 2015

Jono Aidney who performs as Quail State has been through illness and itinerancy, but now back in his hometown of Auckland he has posted his debut album, Volcano Hazards of Auckland, at bandcamp (here) and launches it this Friday, see poster below. Aidney is an articulate guy and that comes through in his focused, gritty and pretty terrific dark take on power pop. And also in what he has to... > Read more

Idle Hands

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Nick Mc Grath of Sparrow Thieves

23 Feb 2015

Last week Elsewhere was pleased to introduce, Lethargic Caffeine, the debut album by Southland's Sparrow Thieves noting gthat it betrayed a maturity of songwriting and an economy of pop-rock into power-pop style. It seemed natural therefore to flick Nick McGrath the band's main songwriter our specially framed songwriter's questionnaire. And needless to say his comments as as interesting... > Read more

Golden Age of the Gas Station

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Sharon Van Etten

11 Feb 2015

Although Sharon Van Etten has only made one prior appearance at Elsewhere (the very favourable review of her 2012 album Tramp) the New York singer-songwriter has long been one of our favourites for her highly literate rock which has its roots in folk. Her most recent album Are We There (deliberately without the question mark) has picked up the best reviews of her career, so to see her in... > Read more

Every Time The Sun Comes Up

THE FAMOUS JAZZ ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Andrew Hall of Spiral

2 Feb 2015

With influences from across the pop and rock spectrum within the context of their jazz, the large ensemble Spiral -- which had its origins on Auckland's West Coast -- present something rather different than the expected. The collective experience of the members includes time with Batucada Sound System, the Rodger Fox Big Band and Hayley Westenra, as well appearances at Montreux, the... > Read more

Pick Me Up

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Jarii Von Gohl of DYSE

26 Jan 2015

The noisy German duo DYSE -- drummer/singer Jarii Van Gohl and guitarist/singer Andrej Dietrich -- make what one new fan on Facebook described as "maths rock".  And that sums it up: disciplined, angular, abrupt stops and starts, rigorously worked out . . . They make sometimes thrilling racket and at other times edge out into what you might call prog-metal. And for just two... > Read more

Reudikamm

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Daniel DeVries of My Baby

5 Jan 2015

On paper, My Baby -- a three-piece out of Amsterdam -- might seem like yet another blues-roots outfit with a bit of Southern spook-spiritualism thrown in for good meaure. After all, their debut album is My Baby Loves Voodoo! But hold hard, because they neither overplay their bluesy hand, nor resort to the cliches that we are so familiar with in the post-White Stripes/Black Keys days.... > Read more

Money Man

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE REGGAE QUESTIONNAIRE: Logan Bell of Katchafire

24 Dec 2014

Elsewhere has long held the view that Hamilton reggae band Katchafire have been the hardest working band in the country. Three gigs on one Waitangi Day alone tells you how committed they are. But having played around this country -- and recording a series of excellent albums -- they also took flight and have toured in Australia and the US. Oh, and Brazil. It's been more than a decade... > Read more

Seek Ye

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE REGGAE QUESTIONNAIRE: Etana

12 Dec 2014

By happy chance, we received a reply from Etana to our Famous Elsewhere Reggae Questionnaire . . . and a year ago she had answered our Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire. But she's a star and the questions are of course different (and where they are the same it is interesting to compare her answers) so let's give the Jamaican soul-reggae queen another shot at it . . . and anyway she's got a new... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE REGGAE QUESTIONNAIRE: Fiji

4 Dec 2014

He's called Fiji because he comes from . . . err, Hawaii actually. George Veikoso aka reggae/r'n'b man Fiji -- who is of Fijian heritage -- has been a regular touring artist around the Pacific Rim, has released a swag of albums in the past two decades (see here), and is an advocate for the specifically Pacific sound. "If you’re going to be a Pacific Islander artist,” he... > Read more

Sweet Darlin

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE REGGAE QUESTIONNAIRE: A-Kel of Tomorrow People

3 Dec 2014

They began life as a studio project . . . but the Wellington collective that is Tomorrow People quickly became a proper band, and one which took their name from the Ziggy Marley song and are unashamedly purveyors of "sunshine reggae". Which might just mean one-drop for barbecues in Aotearoa. They are certainly firmly within a soulful, consciousness tradition as evidenced on... > Read more

Souljah Feeling

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE REGGAE QUESTIONNAIRE: Sammy Johnson

28 Nov 2014

Sammy Johnson is a genuine New Zealand reggae star. His single No Sleep -- which is on his just released debut EP -- topped the local reggae charts and got into the Billboard Top 40 reggae chart. His new single Hey looks like doing just as weill if not better, it is in the US iTunes top 20 this week. And he's also toured in the US, done dates in Australia and is currently touring New... > Read more

Take Me

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Julian Temple

24 Nov 2014    1

Here's a clever compliment: Zeitgeist magazine in the UK said of the Julian Temple Band they were “like the loudest blues band in the world whispering”. And Indie Music in the States said of Temple's songs they were "as dark as the grave and as hopeful as spring, this music is a wonderful and unexpected contradiction of emotions". It's surprising therefore to... > Read more

Upsidedownbackwards

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Mick Flannery

19 Nov 2014

And from out of Cork he comes: singer-songwriter Mick Flannery whose By The Rule album topped the Irish charts within days of its release, and of course was followed by a sell-out tour of Ireland and the UK, as you do. Flannery is now kicking off a New Zealand tour with compatriot John Spillane, and the pair have previously teamed up for a series of shows taking on the Marquee... > Read more

The Small Fire

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Otis Mace

19 Nov 2014

You would have to have lived a very sheltered life in Auckland not to have encountered Otis Mace, the post-punk street singer-songwriter who has become something of a folk hero. In his time Mace has recorded for Ode, Ripper and Jayrem, opened for Bily Bragg, Violent Femmes, Dead on Arrival and others, has wriiten for films, theatre and dance productions . . . He's also held down quite a... > Read more

The Revenge of the Five-Hundred Thousand Tonne Baby

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Thom Powers of Naked and Famous

14 Nov 2014

The annual Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards are more than just a night for winners in the various categories, it has become an opportunity to celebrate the growth and diversity of the local music industry . . . and these days its global reach. It wasn't always like that as I noted in this article recently. The event is once again at Vector Arena in Auckland, on November 20, tickets... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Ladi6

12 Nov 2014

The annual Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards are more than just a night for winners in the various categories, it has become an opportunity to celebrate the growth and diversity of the local music industry . . . and these days its global reach. It wasn't always like that as I noted in this article recently. The event is once again at Vector Arena in Auckland, on November 20, tickets... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Michael Cathro of Ha the Unclear

10 Nov 2014

On any given week Elsewhere receives at least half a dozen very interesting albums and about twice as many which are interesting enough to be worthy of attention. And then quite a few that -- very interesting or bloody awful -- just fall through the cracks . . . because of those dozens of others. We do our best, but it's always a pleasure when albums step up for their genius, uniqueness or... > Read more

Secret Lives of Furniture

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Sam Browne of Black River Drive

10 Nov 2014

When it comes to hard rock from New Zealand, you are spoiled for choice . . . but making a serious entry into the international stakes are Black River Drive whose second album Quicksand is a real milestone. Recorded over two months and produced in Nashville by Toby Wright (who has twiddled the knobs for Slayer, Alice in Chains and Metallica among others), the album has a genuine sonic punch... > Read more

Grenade

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Adam Usmani of Madam Tsunami

3 Nov 2014

Adam Usmani – mainman for the band Madam Tsumani – works a day job and has two kids, but perhaps because of that his songwriting touches some very real places beyond the cliches of pop-rock. Influenced by the emotional directness of grunge (without the noise-power) and with nods towards the likes of Ben Harper and reggae, Madam Tsunami's debut album Man in the Middle also... > Read more

Temptation

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: French for Rabbits

31 Oct 2014

This is what we love to hear. We sent the Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire to Brooke, John and Ben of French for Rabbits and when it came back Brooke had written in the e-mail: "It made made the long trip from Warsaw to Berlin more entertaining!" Yes, New Zealand musicians out there conquering the world one gig at a time . . . although on long boring journeys between. FFR (... > Read more

Woke Up to a Storm