Monday, 20 January 2014

It's My Kind of Interview - Frank Sultana




Frank Sultana is one mighty cool music maker and, along with The Sinister Kids, leads one of Australia's finest music acts. He'll be hitting the road over the next couple of months and has a new EP to take along with him. Frank took the time to answer some questions from Katie about the new single 'Kind Hearted Girl', his favourite Australian music acts, the Frank Sultana and The Sinister Kids live experience and more. Enjoy!





FRANK SULTANA
Interview by Katie Langley


Hi Frank! Welcome to It’s My Kind of Scene. Tell us a bit about yourself… Who are you and how did Frank Sultana and the Sinister Kids come together? 


Frank Sultana: I played in party bands with friends over the years but nothing serious, then in 2010 I started writing some blues and folk songs and released my debut album "Blues from the Lost Motel" in January 2011. During this time I was playing as many shows as I could. Around Sydney and Melbourne at first, then i traveled through California for two months playing. Again it was friends and friends of friends that made up the recording and performing band at that time. I've always loved the idea of my 'band' being transient in nature. More of a collective than a band. There needs to be a natural chain of events or people that links me to the right musicians. It's important. So all the people who have played and currently play with me are friends who I have met through other musical friends. Its like an extended family.


Tell us about your sound. It has been said that it “…lies somewhere between William Faulkner and Nick Cave…”.


Frank: Ask any musician this question and our enthusiasm to describe is equally matched by a cringing sense that you are pigeon holing your art! I love Dylan as much as I love Ray Charles. I think Little Richard is the king. I am moved by the simplicity and raw emotion of Skip James and Son House. I think Robert Johnson invented rock n roll. I could talk about the musical journey from the blues to rock n roll and beyond forever. I just love it. So when I write I want to capture all of that and make my own little chapter of the journey.  Lyrically, I like to create a world, fill it with characters and weave stories. Its like being a fictional novelist, but rather than writing books I write songs. I hope that answers your question!  


You spent New Year’s Eve in a toga with Mojo Juju, Kira Puru, and Gay Paris. That sounds like a fun time! Are there any scandalous stories you can share from the evening?


Frank: We had a great night! It was like a trip to Vegas, if you know what I mean!


Have you made any New Year’s resolutions? I’d like to swim more, and make more bearded friends.
  

Frank: I've stopped making NY resolutions because I am so bad at keeping them!


What songs have you or will you vote for in the Triple J Hottest 100?


Frank: I have to admit that I don't listen to the radio. Maybe a bit of community radio like 2SER or FBI, in my car. Otherwise it's mostly pre-1980 albums at home really. This morning it was Cat Stevens with breakfast and yesterday I fell asleep to the Stones! I can't vote for Robert Johnson or Son House can I? All jokes aside, my favourite release of 2013 was definitely Cash Savage and the Last Drinks' album 'The Hypnotiser'.




It’s Australian Music Month at It’s My Kind of Scene. Who are your favourite Australian artists?


Frank: That's easy. We have been so lucky to meet and play shows with a whole bunch of amazing acts in the last year or so, and they are definitely my favorite Australian artists right now. Brothers Grim and the Blue Murders, Mojo Juju, Kira Puru, Cash Savage, Gay Paris, Lyall Moloney, Papa Pilko and the Binrats. I could go on all day about these guys. It's a scene that isn't a scene, I think James Grim calls it the 'anti scene'!


Your new single ‘Kind Hearted Girl’ is out now. Can you tell us the story behind the track?


Frank: It's one of two songs that I co-wrote with a friend of mine, Anthony Barbarich. He is a Sydney based poet/songwriter and he sent me some lyrics a while back after we had discussed the idea of writing together over a few beers. I added some lyrics, arranged them and wrote some music around them. 'Kind Hearted Girl' is about the adulterous exploits of a beautiful woman seen through the eyes of a bitter and heart broken man. Classic blues subject matter! The other one is a song called 'Working for Pennies' which is the title track of our new EP, which will be out next month.


You’ll be heading out on a national tour to support the single. What do you love about touring and what’s the Frank Sultana and the Sinister Kids live experience like?


Frank: Touring is just such a release of emotion and energy for me. It's the absolute opposite of the recording process. It's all about having fun and playing to within an inch of your life! Every night! You will dance to within an inch of your life too, so come along and see a show. If you like your blues dirty and raw, then you will love it!


After the tour, what comes next? Any plans to record a follow up to Greetings From Devilstown?


Frank: Our new single which drops in January will be backed up by our new 6 track EP, titled "Working for Pennies", which people will be able to buy at our shows, during this tour. After this tour is finished, I have a solo project that has been put on the back burner for a while, which I will finish and release, then who knows, probably a solo tour. We'd like to play more festivals later in the year too. It's rock n roll, who knows what will happen next!


A big thanks to Frank Sultana for stopping by for a chat. You can catch Frank Sultana and The Sinister Kids on tour throughout Australia in Australia throughout February, March and April as they hit the road with the Working for Pennies tour. For more info, check out their Facebook page. And like it too.


The Working for Pennies Tour 2014


Fri 31st Jan @ The Bunker, Coogee Bay Hotel
Sat 1st Feb @ The Great Northern Hotel, Newcastle
Sat 8th Feb @ Fitzroy Hotel, Windsor
Sun 9th Feb @ Frankies Pizza, Sydney (with Big Blind Ray and Barefoot Alley)
Thurs 13th Feb @ The Armidale Club, Armidale
Fri 14th Feb @ The Railway Friendly Bar, Byron Bay 
Sat 15th Feb @ The Joynt, Brisbane (with Kiosk)
Fri 21st Feb @ The Old Bar, Melbourne (with Rich Davies and the Devils Union)
Sat 22nd Feb @ Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine
Fri 28th Feb @ The Aztec, Forster
Sat 1st March @ Bean Bar, Taree
Thurs 13th March @ Taps at Mooloolaba
Fri 14th March @ Rainbow Beach Hotel, Rainbow Beach
Sat 15th March @ Mojo Burning Festival, New Globe Theatre, Brisbane (with the Fumes, Marshall Okell, Lachy Doley, Transvaal Diamond Syndicate and many more)
Fri 28th March @ Brighton Up Bar, Sydney
Sat 29th March @ RAD (formerly Yours and Owls), Wollongong
Sun 30th March @ Greenwell Point Hotel, Nowra
Sat 12th April @ Old Canberra Inn, Canberra


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