As you all know, Jada and Gabriel Winterfield, vocalist of Australian psychedelic dance band, Jagwar Ma, had a little talk over the phone about Laneway 2017. How cool is that? If you missed it, now is your chance to know how it went, so read on!
Photo by Maclay Heroit
*Note: This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.
Jada: Hi Gab. Thank you so much for picking up this call. We really appreciate it. So you guys are doing Laneway. How exciting is that?
Gab: Very, very exciting. I can’t wait. We were supposed to play two years ago, but I had an injury so we couldn’t make it, which was really annoying, so I’m very excited that finally, we got a chance to actually go back and play.
Jada: Oh my goodness. Okay, it’s a good thing that you’re in one piece and you’re healthy. Is this going to be your first time in Asia?
Gab: We’ve been there before. I’ve been there quite a lot when I was a kid, and we actually toured. We played [in] Vietnam at the end of last year, and we played [in] Hong Kong, and Bangkok, and KL as well — in Kuala Lumpur. So yeah, that was really, really fun.
Jada: How come Manila’s not in your list Gab? I mean why is that? [laughs]
Gab: Oh no, don’t say that to me! I would love to play in Manila. I’ve never been to the Philippines, and I’ve always wanted to go. [It’s] one of the places I’ve always, always wanted to go.
Jada: That’s so nice to hear. Maybe after Laneway? You can make a very short tour here. Maybe a one night only kind of…
Gab: A little pit stop.
Jada: Yeah! Something like that. Your fans are gonna love it. I’m sure. So, for this particular festival, what are you looking forward to apart from you know, screaming fans, and maybe good food? What else are you looking forward to this one?
Gab: Well I think it ought to be great to play in Singapore. It’s a great city. It’s a great place, and I’m also looking forward to playing some songs and a bit of a Boogie. Have a dance! I might be even jumping into the crowd as well.
Jada: Nobody can stop you from dancing, jumping into the crowd, and all that. That’s for sure. You’re talking about performing, and singing your songs. Let’s talk a little bit about your latest album. Newly released, very, very fresh: Every Now And Then. Congratulations, by the way.
Gab: Thanks very much.
Jada: It’s a great album I’m sure. What’s your favorite song in that album?
Gab: My favorite track is probably Ordinary. I really like Ordinary. I’m really, really looking forward to that, and I really like playing it as well. It’s a bit of a challenge vocally. I don’t know what we were thinking in the studio when we were writing it. I think I’m trying to impress myself or, I don’t know. But, I really enjoy it, and I like the narrative about it.
It has two characters in the verse and the chorus, and it’s about a relationship. And the verse is kind of, like an alpha male guy talking about how he ‘gotta change, be a man, like a macho thing. And the female character is like: “No. I like you just the way you are, so you don’t need to pretend to be anyone else. That would just be very basic of you, very ordinary.” You know?
Jada: I’m sure those are very relatable lyrics, and that’s a very relatable song.
Gab: I’d like to think so. I’d like to think people can actually take something from it.
Jada: When you perform in Laneway though, what are you gotta sing more from? Your latest album or the last one?
Gab: That’s a bit of a trade secret I have to say, but we’re sort of doing half and half. When we play our own show, we do half and half, but the only problem is when we play our own shows, we normally just do encores and requests, and we just do songs that people want [us] to do. You know?
Jada: Oh, that’s good. That’s very nice of you, of course. But what did you guys do in this three-year gap between your fist album?
Gab: I talked to Jono a lot to get down on the record. About a year and a half ago, I have to say we worked on the record, and then the other half, we went on tour around the world. In total we took about six months off. We didn’t take that much time before.
Jada: Okay that’s good that you went back to working right away. Can you tell us what the difference is now? I mean what difference did three years make from the music from Howlin to the music from Every Now and Then?
Gab: Well, I guess, I was 21 when we finished Howlin’, and now I just turned 25 so I don’t know, it’s a different age. I’m getting old. You know?
Jada: You’ve just gathered so many experiences probably in those three years, so I guess you’re coming from a different place now. I mean, you’ve matured so much, probably.
Gab: Yeah, I think so, in a way. The wheel of life keeps turning, and you take experiences from there. That was the most significant thing that probably has changed by the time of the record you know? More so than anything else.
Jada: Okay, why don’t you invite our listeners here on Jam 88.3 to go check out Laneway on January?
Gab: Hey, what’s up Manila? This is Gab from Jagwar Ma. We’re going to be playing on Singapore Laneway in January 2017, so please come down, come hang out. We’ll do some high fives. We’ll hang out. We’ll play games. We’ll make music. I wanna meet you. I wanna hug you. I wanna do everything. So come chill.
Jada: And you wanna dance with them too.
Gab: Yes I do. I wanna dance.
Jada: Yes. Okay. Let’s Do that. Alright, thank you so much Gab. Thank you so much. We’ll hope to meet you in January in Singapore.
Gab: Sounds good.
St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival will be happening on January 21, 2017 at The Meadow, Gardens by the Bay. For more details, check out their official website.