Zander Rhodes recently took us by surprise with the tender lyrical journey that is Byron Bay. His knack for story telling and fingerpicked guitar lines weaves a brilliant blanket of nostalgia as it falls like silk upon the listeners shoulders.
We had a chat with Zander about his forthcoming debut EP Whiny Folk Songs and growing up in Yorkshire.
We caught up with Brisbane folk artist Zander Rhodes to get the inside scoop on his heart warming debut EP Whiny Folk Songs.
HAPPY: Hey Zander, how’s it going? What are you up to at the moment?
ZANDER: Hey! Everything’s going well, thanks! At the moment I’m focusing on writing new songs and preparing for my EP launch gig at The Junk Bar in Brisbane on Sunday 22 September.
HAPPY: We’ve loved Byron Bay! What is it like releasing a song that feels so hand-crafted?
ZANDER: Thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed it! It was a fun one to release and it’s had a great response so far.
HAPPY: What can you tell us about the forthcoming EP Whiny folk Songs?
ZANDER: This is my first EP and it features four stripped-back acoustic tracks. The songs are pretty intimate and personal. I wrote all of them quite a few years ago and they capture that late-teen angst period of my life quite well.
HAPPY: What was it like growing up in Yorkshire?
ZANDER: It was an interesting place to spend my formative years. I grew up in Leeds, which is a post-industrial city in West Yorkshire. Its a very diverse place, so I was exposed to a huge range of cultural and musical influences. The weather is pretty grim there most of the year, but I sometimes think it’s the grim places that produce the best art and music. As Bob Dylan said – ‘behind every beautiful thing there’s been some kind of pain’.
HAPPY: Were there any particular artists you were listening to that inspired by ‘Byron Bay’?
ZANDER: I guess lyrically I would say Paul Simon, I’ve always loved his songs about travel and his conversational style. In terms of production, I love the Lumineers and the way they recorded Cleopatra.
HAPPY: You wrote Byron Bay while on the road. Is there something romantic about movement and travel?
ZANDER: Definitely! There’s no better inspiration than traveling somewhere new and experiencing new things.
HAPPY: Was there some divine, breakthrough moment when music, life and purpose all come together and made sense to you?
ZANDER: Haha if only! I’m not sure about life and purpose, but music will always be a part of it.
HAPPY: Who is your ideal show if you could support any artist at any concert?
ZANDER: Ooh that’s a tough one! I’d love to support someone from home, like Lucy Rose or Benjamin Francis Leftwich.
HAPPY: What does the future look like for Zander Rhodes?
ZANDER: Enjoying playing shows around Brisbane and the surrounding coastlines! I’m hoping to record another EP early next year, so stay tuned for that!
Zander Rhodes is launching his EP at Junk Bar tomorrow night 22 Sep. Event info here.