Artist Spotlight | Sounds of The Mid West Live Launch
Artist Spotlight featuring Sounds of the Mid West acts Nicky Robson, Jade Jackson, Gus McCay, Good Strife, Alexia Parenzee and Rosie Sitoris from Warriyangga Warralgurniya.
Listen to Sounds of The Mid West
The live launch of our ‘Sounds of The Mid West‘ regional recording compilation is only a few weeks away! After postponing the April launch due to Cyclone Seroja, we’re excited to head back to the region to launch the album at Queens Park Theatre, Geraldton on Friday 23 July alongside our incredible artists, the Mid West community and music-lovers.
The event will see each of the ten acts featured on the compilation take to the stage for a special live performance. Each with their own unique sound and story to tell, we reached out to some of artists to chat about what music means to them, the upcoming live launch, and what they’ve been up to since the album release.
What did it mean to you to be able to record your song and release it to your community?
Nicky Robson: Being able to share my song with my community has been a surreal and humbling experience for me. I think the most important aspect is giving encouragement to other local emerging artists that if I could achieve this then there is no stopping them.
Jade Jackson: I felt extremely proud to be able to record a song of my own, it was a big milestone for me, being only 17 at the time and having little to no experience in the music scene. To see the community of Geraldton support and share my music is amazing! It’s given me a drive to keep writing and recording music.
Is there a stand-out moment for you from the recording process?
Good Strife: The whole recording process was our standout moment. We have never been in a recording studio let alone recorded anything professionally, so to be surrounded by WAM’s amazing team was an awesome learning experience for us. We got a new insight on what goes on when a song is being recorded and the steps that are taken, even though we were nervous the whole time we enjoyed every minute of it and can’t wait to be back in the recording studio recording more.
Rosie Sitorus: Probably just Peter learning to sing his language in contemporary songs – since getting the CD he’s been listening constantly and can sing the songs now!
Nicky: The whole process was an amazing learning experience but the stand out moment was at the end of day 2 when we all sat together and listened to the complete song. It made me tear up with pride at the amazing work everyone had done.
Gus McKay noted the buzz in seeing and hearing the song come together throughout the recording process and the enjoyment in creating something unique and completely new for the project.
What are you most looking forward to at the live launch in July?
Good Strife: We are looking forwards to meeting everyone, some of the artists we know and there are some we haven’t met yet so it will be nice to see everyone. Also, to perform on the Queens Park Theatre stage for the launch is an exciting thing too, because we have performed in local pubs, venues and events but to be on a stage like the Queens Park Theatre is something completely different and exciting.
Jade: I’m looking forward to coming together with the other artists in the album, and providing a showcase of talent for those attending. I’m also looking forward to showcasing some of my new music to a large audience as it hasn’t been recorded yet.
Nicky: Is being able to perform on stage with my Dad, my sister and a lot of my family present who have never seen me perform live.
If you could give one piece of advice to people in remote or regional areas who wanted to start making music – what would it be?
Jade: Just because you live in a small community, that does not limit your opportunity. Myself, living in Geraldton, I considered moving to Perth to widen my opportunity but I’m glad I chose to stay rural for the time being, as it has allowed me to gain close relationships with venue owners and fellow artists.
Good Strife: Our advice to people is to be brave and be yourself. Many people get lost trying to be like everyone else, whether they sound or look the same. But don’t be, be your unique self and play your music the way you want to, because at the end of the day, people who want to hear you are those who love your music, not who you pretend to be.
Nicky: Just get out and start, get in touch with local music groups or programs. Attend open mic nights, post on social media. Don’t let fear or the feeling of not being good enough or knowing enough stop you. I really am living my dream, the only thing that stopped me before was myself. If I can do it there is no stopping you.
What have you been up to since the compilation was released?
Since the release of the album in March 2021, many of the artists have been making the most of any opportunity to perform, taking the stage in local pubs and venues to perform their original music. With Sounds of The Mid West featuring her debut release, Nicky notes she’s been writing more music and engaging with the network of musicians and artists around her.
Jade has continued adding to her impressive collection of original songs, with plans to record her own EP in October. WAM was excited to provide Jade support as she applied for a community grant to support the recording of her EP.
Having been an involved member of her local music community for many years, Alexia Parenzee‘s song ‘Creed and Colour’, released as a single off Sounds of The Mid West, has garnered airplay in every Australian state via ABC local radio, added to ABC Radio’s National playlisting, and seen online streams and airplay in Canada, US, South Africa and Germany. Alexia has gone on to form a 9-piece soul/funk band thanks to the connections made through WAM and the regional recording project.