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.

Subscribe to my newsletter for weekly updates.

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITERS' QUESTIONNAIRE: Ant Beard of Caravana Sun

30 Mar 2017  |  3 min read

Australian band  Caravana Sun may not be well known on this side of the Tasman, but that will doubtless change with their forthcoming tour (see dates below) and once songs like Whale Song start to stick. Whale Song is from their third album Guerrilla Club (recorded in Freemantle with producer Joey Quartermain of Eskimo Joe fame) and songs like Open Up on the album connects the... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE JAZZ QUESTIONNAIRE: Michael League of Snarky Puppy

30 Mar 2017  |  3 min read

Few jazz groups today command the massive audience which Snarky Puppy have. Many of their pieces have multiple million plays on Spotify. The Grammy-grabbing collective – which picked up best r'n'b performance in 2014 and best contemporary instrumental album the following year for Sylva which was a collaboration with the Holland's Metropole Orchestra – can call on a roster... > Read more

Tarova

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE JAZZ QUESTIONNAIRE: Andy Sugg

24 Mar 2017  |  3 min read

Saxophonist Andy Sugg is Melbourne-based and touring regularly across Australia and to Europe and the US. But he hasn't made it to New Zealand . . . yet. In April he brings his band here to promote his new CD Wednesday's at M's (dates and venues below) which was recorded in New York last year with some expats and New Yorkers, including drummer Nate Wood (Snarky Puppy) and pianist Sean... > Read more

Hemispheric Part 2

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Lord Echo

13 Mar 2017  |  2 min read

Some people chose excellent names for themselves, as has this Wellington producer/DJ with Lord Echo . . . because he brings to world of Jamaican and African styles together in a techno/disco-soul mash-up. And when we say he's “big in Japan” it isn't a bad joke. Check the clip for his 2015 tour there and get the groove-vibe. He's got albums and disco singles out there... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Swan Sisters

10 Mar 2017  |  2 min read

The Swan Sisters are Amiria Grenell and Amy Grace, an acoustic folk duo who have each had independent and highly successful careers, much of it offshore from New Zealand. Grenell – who answered a different questionnaire previously and is daughter of respected country singer John – won a Tui folk award for her second album Three Feathers in 2012 and was a finalist in the... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Baynk

9 Mar 2017  |  3 min read

A case of mild-mannered engineering student by day, cool musician by night? Two years ago Jock Nowell-Usticke – who performs as Baynk – was studying at Canterbury when he released his first single Sundae, an impressive slice of slinky slow-building electronica. And on the back of that he was picked to play Laneway, had his follow-up Could You on Vice and now –... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITERS' QUESTIONNAIRE: Jackie Bristow

8 Mar 2017  |  4 min read

As a singer-songwriter, Jackie Bristow, formerly of the South Island, found her natural home in Austin many years ago. Her excellent Shot of Gold album of last year confirmed her as a writer of depth and stature, and a persuasive singer, and in producer/guitarist Mark Punch she found someone empathetic to her sound. We had in our best of the year list. Bristow and Punch are... > Read more

I Don't Want to Come Down

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Elliott Hammond of the Delta Riggs

25 Feb 2017  |  2 min read

Further down in this interview, Elliott Hammond of Australia's Delta Riggs describes himself as "a peculiar dude". He's not really but his musical tastes to reflect a rare openness (Harry Connick Jnr to Iggy Pop) . . . and that is reflected in Delta Riggs' enjoyable and sometimes witty guitar-driven funk rock. Their recent album Active Galactic is an unapologetic meltdown of... > Read more

Never Seen This Before

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Silver of Push Push

23 Jan 2017  |  2 min read

Here's a true story from the battleground of fun. It was the very late Eighties and the young man was carrying a skateboard and hitchhiking on Onewa Rd in Northcote, heading into central Auckland. When he got in the car and we started talking I asked him what he was going to be, or some dumb question like that. He said without hesitation, “a rock star” . . . and... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Candice Milner

2 Dec 2016  |  3 min read

No musician just appears out of nowhere . . . although Candice Milner, now 18, comes pretty close. Her single Run For It won the audience.co.nz monthly chart in June and that set her on the path to her debut album Evergreen. Recorded in her hometown of Lyttelton with Ben Edwards and a band of sympathetic players, Evergreen is an impressively diverse collection of songs which ease... > Read more

Gallery

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Rachael Price of Lake Street Dive

28 Nov 2016  |  2 min read

You only needed to see Lake Street Dive's You Tube of them singing The Jackson' Five's I Want You Back on street in Boston four years ago to realise they were pretty special. The quartet had met at the New England Conservatory of Music and had bonded over a love of Motown and classic Sixties pop with touches of country. They'd taken their time: in late 2014 when we spoke with... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Troy Kingi

21 Nov 2016  |  2 min read

With his debut album Guitar Party at Uncle's Bach, Troy Kingi arrived with a crash. It is a beautifully packaged double disc attributed to Troy Kingi and the Electric Haka Boogie. It seems like the 32-year old Northland singer-guitarist came from nowhere but he co-wrote the hit Aotearoa with Stan Walker and he's played with Mara TK (Electric Wire Hustle) and as an actor he has... > Read more

Cold Steel

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Anna Coddington

21 Oct 2016  |  3 min read

Some things you may not know about New Zealand singer-songwriter Anna Coddington, whose third album Luck/Time is released today: That she is -- and we quote the press release here -- the face of Trilogy Skincare, has an MA in Linguistics and is a second Dan Black Belt in karate. Oh, and runs marathons, wrote all but one of the 12 tracks on Luck/Time (the other a co-write) and produced all... > Read more

Without a Fight

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Ben Morley of Mice On Stilts

26 Sep 2016  |  2 min read

It's fair to say that we probably haven't seen or a heard a band like Auckland six-piece Mice on Stilts for decades, perhaps even ever before. Their expansive music owes debts to atmospheric prog-rock and romantic classic music with touches of introverted folk and . . . You get the picture? Elsewhere was very enthusiastic about their debut EP An Ocean Held Me and first album... > Read more

The Hours

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Ross Mullins

26 Sep 2016  |  3 min read

It has been more than a wee while – he says 17 years in the liner notes to his current album – since we have heard new music from Ross Mullins, once the unofficial Musician-in-Residence in his home suburb of Devonport. From the mid Eighties with his acclaimed debut album State House Kid, songwriter-singer and keyboard player Mullins – who fronted the band Last Man... > Read more

Koromiko Road

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE JAZZ QUESTIONNAIRE: DeWayne Pate

26 Sep 2016  |  2 min read

Jazz bassist DeWayne Pate from San Francisco has played with some of the most famous musicians of the past 30 years, and across an impressive musical spectrum: bluesmen like Duke Robilliard and Charlie Musselwhite, pop and rockers like Pat Benetar and Huey Lewis, country legend Sneaky Pete Kleinow, Boz Scaggs . . . Jazz of course remains his first love and as a technically gifted player... > Read more

Goin' Home

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE JAZZ QUESTIONNAIRE: Florian Ross

26 Sep 2016  |  3 min read

German pianist and composer Florian Ross has done it all, from solo piano recordings through to big bands with a little organ-fronted trio along the way. He studied in Cologne, London and New York, has taught in a number of German academies and universities,  and has released a dozen albums. He's played alongside Kenny Wheeler,  Vince Mendoza and John Scofield . .... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITERS QUESTIONNAIRE: Skyscraper Stan

23 Sep 2016  |  5 min read

And they call him Skyscraper Stan because . . . At a height which means ducking through doors, Stan Woodhouse stands a little bit taller than most New Zealand musicians . . . and through his rough-hewn, folk/blue and country-influenced music stands apart too. When he was 20 he went off to Melbourne to ostensibly study zoology but also honed his songwriting and started playing... > Read more

Elvis

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE WORLD MUSIC QUESTIONNAIRE: Moana Maniapoto

20 Sep 2016  |  3 min read

Few New Zealand artists have the stature, musical longevity and long-term political commitment of Moana Maniapoto (Ngāti Tūwharetoa/Tūhourangi-Ngāti Wahiao). So it is hardly surprising that she should be this year's inductee into the New Zealand Music Hall of Fame. She will be so honoured at this year's APRA Silver Scroll awards in Auckland on Thursday, September 29.... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE JAZZ QUESTIONNAIRE: Nick Williams of After 'Ours

16 Sep 2016  |  3 min read

As one half of After 'Ours – with pianist/composer Michal Martyniuk – the multi-instrumentalist/producer Nick Williams has made a big impression with their debut album Odyssey, released today. Their music sits along the edge of cool LA fusion of the Seventies coupled to soulful and contemporary r'n'b. It also comes with a number of stellar guests like saxophonist Nathan... > Read more

Day After Day