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Charlie Mayfair: The Interview!

With a brand new film clip, ‘Tell Her’, under their belt and a headlining east coast tour starting next week, Dave and Irena from the band Charlie Mayfair took time out from one of their jam sessions to talk to Brendon Rosolen about the band, the tour and double entendres.

How did Charlie Mayfair come together and form?

Dave: I guess it all sort of started, Hannah and I had been friends for a number of years before performing together and we started writing songs together and from there we realised there was this chemistry and this drive behind the music and then we met all the other guys. We became friends with them through university and mutual friends and jamming and that sort of thing.

Are you guys still at uni?

Irena: Christo [The Other Dave] and I are doing degrees, I'm doing music, and Christo is doing his business degree. The rest of us have part time work and do what we can to fuel this.

Alright, so you haven't quite given up the day job to pursue to rock'n'roll lifestyle?

Irena: Ahh, no.

Dave: Not yet, we're not at that stage. One day hopefully, that'll be the dream.

Hannah also acts as the manager of the band, correct?

Dave: Hannah and Will both share management.

Irena: They are co-managers.

So, they organise all the gigs and that stuff as well?

Irena: We have a booking agent, we are very fortunate to have Matt Corey over at Harbour, who organises all of our gigs and Hannah and Will sort of organise the rest of us around that pretty well.

Hannah also plays in emma louise, as part of the band, is that a permanent thing or was that just for her last tour?

Irena: Hannah, yeah she plays in emma louise, I play in another band as well. I guess she's not a permanent member, per se, but she has just done some recording with her and things. But we all have our own musical side projects, but we all know Charlie is our main priority.

What stands out as your career highlight, as a band, or individually?

Dave: I think there have been a number of big influences and moments. Show wise, we were lucky enough to play at Sunset Sounds this year, that was awesome being able to play alongside amazing bands like Interpol, The Klaxons.

Irena: Paul Kelly.

Dave: Yeah, all these really influential artists that have crafted the way we write.

Did you get to meet many of those bands backstage?

Dave: Yeah! We were lucky enough to meet a couple of them, I have a really good chat to Chris Cheney from The Living End, I didn't realise how much of a cool dude he is, you'd think that after being famous for so many years… he was still just a very genuine guy and that was the cool thing about most of the musicians we met, they still kept that genuine attitude.

Irena: They were down to earth.

Dave: Yeah, down to earth.

Irena: Very inspiring.

Nice. Now, you've just released the film clip for 'Tell Her', your new single, how was the process of making that and bringing it to life?

Dave: It was an awesome process actually, we teamed up with Jefferton James, he's a director down in Sydney, he did a lot of the Boy & Bear film clips.

Irena: He's an amazing artist as well, and he had his assistant, Byron Quandary.

Dave: Yeah, and the two of them, with us, we crafted the storyline and the plot and they took over the directional aspects of it. We are really happy with the way it turned out. We filmed it at Moogerah Dam, in Queensland, and it was beautiful.

Irena: It was freezing cold, we had to get into the water at the end and we could only do one shot of that.

Dave: I think we all walked away with a bit of a cold.

It is a fantastic clip, you said you wrote the story yourselves?

Irena: We all drafted the storyline together and Jefferton put his stamp on it, and made it come to life and it really just fell into place.

What was your original inspiration behind the story and, for those who may not have seen it, what is the basic storyline?

Irena: With the song, the song alone without the clip has this general theme of loss of the people you leave behind. I suppose that was the main focus of the song and then bringing that to the clip was just thinking of a really interesting, artistic way to put that onto film. We just concocted this story and went with it.

Dave: It's kind of an appreciation of the people you lose in your life and an appreciation of their life…A way of saying goodbye but not necessarily in a sad or miserable way but, like, accepting and really appreciating the life that they shared with you.

That's really, very interesting and it is a beautiful clip. Now you start your tour later this month…

Dave: Yep.

Irena: Next week!

Dave: Yeah, it's our first full east coast headline tour, we're really, really excited about that.

Irena: Weeee!

Dave: Yeah, we are playing with some really amazing bands, sharing some awesome pretty experiences on some good stages as well. Really looking forward to hitting all those cities.

And you're starting in Brisbane at The Zoo (26th August), then onto the Gold Coast, Byron Bay and then heading down to Sydney, is that correct?

Dave: We're heading to Sydney and Melbourne and a couple of shows in-between.

Who will be supporting you?

Dave: In Sydney we're playing with two really cool bands, Tiger Town and Toucan.

Irena: That's at the Vanguard on the 1st of September it's going to be a really great show. We're really keen to meet those bands a build some friendships.

Talking about friendships, I know you have a fairly decent Facebook following, has that been important in developing your fan base?

Irena: I suppose any band has to build their online identity, because not everyone can make it to a show, not everyone can get the live experience so Facebook, Twitter, and anything that gives you this identity as a band. Cause people are interested in what you're doing as well as the music.

Dave: It's the easiest way to keep in touch with fans and friends. It's instant and it really builds a personal relationship as well, you find you can have discussions with fans and friends. Speaking as a fan, when you 'like' a band on Facebook, its like you're building a friendship with them, you see them on stage, you see their faces, and you see their personality.

Do you spend a lot of time interacting with your fans on Facebook?

Dave: Yeah, sometimes it get a bit silly, but we always make the time. If someone takes the time to say something nice about us we definitely take time to say something back, so show our appreciation of their enthusiasm of the band.

Cool, do you play any practical jokes with that, impersonating each other or such things?

Dave: We used to do that, but now we sort of agreed to sign off our names, so we don't get in trouble.

Keeping it professional…

Dave: I think we do mess around with it a little bit.

Cool, so what comes next, after the tour, will there be another EP, or will you be working on an album?

Dave: Yeah, we are currently in the process of recording the rest of the EP, so we've been busy in the band room and studio. Looking forward to releasing that one later this year sometime. We're really proud of the direction that we're heading, I think with the music we've created over the past year it's grown a lot and we've grown a lot as musicians.

Irena: I find it really interesting when bands develop, as they go from album to album and not just doing the same thing all the time, like growing up and developing as musicians as well and just experimenting with our different sounds and really loving what we're doing.

Dave: And challenging each other as musicians too.

Seeing you perform live, you are all amazing musicians, is that something you strive to develop amongst yourselves?

Dave: Yeah, absolutely. I think everyone of us is constantly striving to be stronger musicians. I guess growing your strength as a musician you grow your ability to express your art more. You have these ideas in your head, and as you grow as a musician it becomes easier to paint on that canvas.

Irena: I don't think anyone can every say when they're finished developing or learning, we'll be rocking out together when we're forty and you can't ever say your the best singer, or the best guitarist, cause you'll always be learning.

Dave: You're constantly learning off other musicians as well.

Irena: Constantly bettering yourself to, like, kill it at your craft.

Wow, thank you for that insight. One final question, something we like to ask all the bands we interview, if Charlie Mayfair were an animal what would they be?

Irena: Oooh!

Dave: That's a tough one.

Irena: i kinda want to say…No, I don't, too playful. I was going to say panda…

Dave: I was going to say cougar. A bit fierce, but you know…

Irena: Fierce but loveable, like a trained cougar.

Dave: A trained cougar.

A Trained Cougar?

Irena: It's still got a bit of spice in there, but it's been trained a little.

Dave: Yeah.

That's a pretty fierce double entendre going on there.

Irena: Haha, we're like an old woman!

Dave: Haha, let's just stick with trained cougar.

Ok, we'll leave out any mention of the double entendre. (ed note: oops)

That's one of the more interesting responses we've had. Thanks for talking to us and I'll let you get back to your jam session and the rest of your day.

Dave: Thank you so much for having us.

Irena: Thank you.


Watch Charlie Mayfair's new clip here.

Stay up to date with Charlie Mayfair on Facebook.

You can catch Charlie Mayfair as they tour the country on their Tell Her Tour 2011

Thursday, August 25 | The Basement, Gold Coast

Tix: Door: $12.50

Friday, August 26 | The Zoo, Brisbane

Tix: PRE: $10 + bf / Door: $13

Saturday, August 27 | The Brewery, Byron Bay

Tix: Free Entry

Wednesday, August 31 | Bar On The Hill, Newcastle University

*Midday Show*

Tix: Free Entry

Wednesday, August 31 | Yours and Owls, Wollongong

Tix: Door: $5

Thursday, September 1 | The Vanguard, Sydney

Tix: PRE: $10 + bf / Door: $13

Friday, September 2 | Empress Hotel, Melbourne

Tix: PRE: $8 + bf / Door: $11

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