This month FOCUS chatted to local musician Chris Rose. It’s been a busy six years since we last spoke to the young artist, so we had loads to catch up on …
It’s been six years since we last spoke to you at FOCUS – we can only imagine it’s been an amazing journey to where you are now! Give us a little insight into what you’ve been up to …
Wow, it’s been a super long journey! I feel like I’m still only just getting things started now though. I’ve gained so much experience since then, chasing my music career and I’ve battled many highs and lows trying to get the exposure and my music heard.
I have moved to Sydney and back again (I LOVE living in Port Macquarie). I graduated from the Talent Development Project in Sydney at the Sydney Entertainment centre in 2011.
I’ve had three different recording contracts with Sony Music and many amazing experiences with that. I released a single with Sony called We Are, which I performed as the finale song at the 30 years of the School Spectacular and was broadcast on Channel 9. I have previously travelled to Menindee in remote Western NSW to work with the school there, where I wrote a song called “The Menindee Train” which was performed with the school kids at the School Spectacular.
I have booked and performed my own tours on the East Coast of Aus, performed a weekly residency in Darlinghurst, Sydney for 12 months building my live performance skills, supported some big artists and performed at festivals. I’ve also toured the country with The Voice winner 2013, Harrison Craig.
Earlier in this year I performed at Circular Quay for the Australia Day Spectacular to a massive audience. I did my first sold out ticketed show at Flavours Lighthouse Beach down the road from where I grew up, for my single Godzilla, which I recorded at Sing Sing studios Melbourne.
I’ve just performed a massive full band show at The Loungeroom in Port Macquarie to support my new EP, Electric Air. I’ve basically played gigs and have been working every week relentlessly planning my music career since we last spoke. I love it so much.
How would you say your music has progressed over the past six years?
I have tried out many different styles of music, from pop to indie to country and more electronic singer/songwriter coastal vibes.
I’ve honed my skills in many different studios, from home studios in Bondi and Rozelle to Sony Studios and most recently Analog Heart Studios in Brisbane, where I recorded my new EP. I’ve also co-written with many different songwriters and producers over the years, which has been amazing and so much fun learning from some of the best in the business. I think I’ve finally found my sound and my vibe with my new EP Electric Air, which is my most polished sound to date.
Tell us about your new EP. What was the inspiration behind the tracks?
The EP is titled Electric Air after the title track and funnily enough, it’s probably a bit of a mix of most of those musical styles mentioned above. It’s definitely a commercial radio sound, but with an organic singer songwriter twist that I think is quite original but suits current musical trends.
I recorded the tracks with producer Stuart Stuart at his Brisbane Studio, who is behind all the hits for Aussie band Sheppard. All of the songs were written by me except Anything Better, which was co -written in Sydney with Carl Dimataga.
Inspiration from the tracks comes from many different places; Back To You was written when my girlfriend went overseas on a longish holiday ha ha. It is about missing someone and hoping they feel the same way too. Cannonball Heart (Single #1) was a long process; I had this really cool chorus for a long time, and I ended up writing the verses and bridge to go with it a few years later. It’s a quirky pop song about a cool, surfy girl who leads you on and only wants you when they’re lonely and would leave you if anything better came up.
Electric Air was a song where I wrote the whole melody all at once whilst driving my car. I pulled over and recorded it all on my phone. However, I changed the concept three times and ended up perfecting the lyrics whilst in the studio with Stuart Stuart.
Finally, Anything Better is a simple song about rekindling with an old flame and realising that there is nothing better than being with that person.
How did you enjoy the recording process?
I love being in the studio, imagining sounds and the style of music and seeing that come to life, as well as perfecting lyrics and vocal takes, and adding harmonies on top. It’s always quite stressful getting lyrics right and recordings right. But for me, there is nothing more exciting and satisfying then having a finished product you are stoked with.
You’ve worked alongside some amazing artists – such as Icehouse and Thirsty Merc, to name a couple. What was it like working alongside these iconic musicians?
It has been really amazing! Always such a buzz meeting them and hanging out and does wonders to build your profile. I actually have hung out and written songs with Rai from Thristy Merc; he’s a genius and super fun to hang with ha ha. I haven’t had so many major supports recently, because I’m currently independent of all agents and managers, though I hope in the near future to have some more opportunities.
I’m really enjoying putting on my own headline shows and fine tuning my show as an artist with my band in my own right. I’ve definitely come a long way live and really appreciate all the support I get from venues on the Mid North Coast.
What is your biggest dream and goal?
My goal is to build myself up enough to have some of my songs catch on with commercial radio and land some TV syncs etc. I hope to gain the attention of record labels and put the right team around me and my music.
I would love to be an overnight success that has taken many years to build up to, such as Amy Shark, Vance Joy, Conrad Sewell or Sheppard. We have some amazing artists in Aus cracking it around the world, and I hope I can do that too!
Tell us about your plans for the next twelve months …
I’ve got so many plans. I have recently shot a music video in Sydney for my next single, Electric Air, that I’m about to release. I plan on making videos for each of the songs on my current record, as I’ve found it’s hardly worth having a great song and no video in the age of social media.
I plan to do a tour after my home town launch, and I’m back in the studio in early August to record two more tracks. I’m always songwriting and making plans and have gigs booked for the rest of the year. I’m also keeping my options open, in case big opportunities come along. I regularly update my supporters in the music and radio industry, and I hope the right people come along and join my journey.
And lastly, where can our readers go to follow your journey?
Thank you so much for the interview and support! Please check me out on my Facebook page www.facebook.com/chrisrosemusician and I’m on Spotify, iTunes and all the rest! Hope to see you at a show sometime soon.
Catch Chris Rose at
Heritage Hotel, Gladstone.
Sunday, August 5th – 3pm.
The Seabreeze Hotel South West Rocks.
Sunday, August 19th – 7pm.
Finnian’s Irish Tavern, Port Macquarie.
Friday, August 24th – 7pm.