Interview: Hussy Hicks

Published in Drum Media (WA) | 04.04.13 | Issue # 332

Hussy Hicks_H_0413


They may call Gold Coast home, but the duo that is Hussy Hicks spends enough time travelling to qualify for platinum Frequent Flyer status. Daniel Cribb manages to track down Julz Parker and Leesa Gentz to chat about their new record before they take it around the globe.

“We’re part of the lucky few,” laughs Hussy Hicks’ Leesa Gentz, discussing how music has enabled herself and Julz Parker to escape the clutches of a 9-5 stint. “It also means we have to be on the road a lot,” she adds.

Living in the Gold Coast, Perth is almost as far away from their home they can get while still being in the same country. But Hussy Hicks are heading back to WA for FolkWorld Fairbridge Festival and a short run of headline dates only a month after a three-week tour of the state.

Their last visit saw them perform as a duo, the format in which they have toured the world, but their return sees them touring with as a full band for the first time. “It’s still essentially a similar vibe; we’re still gonna have lots of jamming and lots of similar songs, just a different take on it, and we’ll have a whole bunch of new songs because of the new album, which is a bit more band-based,” Parker tells. “I’ll play a bit more electric guitar and obviously we’ll do a bit more groove-based stuff with the rhythm section.”

Touring Europe last year, Parker and Gentz found themselves with a week to kill in West London. They met up with a couple of friends and jumped into a friend’s studio, which resulted in a new record. Unintentionally, Hussy Hicks had put together their biggest sounding record yet.

“We made this really kind of a different record to what we’re used to – it’s much less that kind of rootsy, acoustic sound and more just,’Let’s see what we can do with this band in this situation’. So it’s a couple of songs that were on the live album that we released last year and then a bunch of brand new stuff,” Gentz explains.

With so much travelling involved in their musical careers, it’s sometimes hard to tell where the sightseeing ends and music begins, which is why their songs seem to flow so naturally, and how they’ve managed to put a fresh spin on progressive folk country.

“We try to take the opportunity of being on the other side of the world to say, ‘We do have a couple of days off, let’s get some friends together, and we’ll go hang out for a week or even a weekend’,” Gentz says. “You’ve got a couple of days off, you might as well make the most of it, so we try and experience as much as we can, and that’s where a lot of the inspiration comes from.”

Although they’re returning to WA so soon after their last visit, don’t expect another tour for a while. After bringing their rhythm section to Perth, Hussy Hicks will be vacating the country until the start of next year. “We’re going to spend some time over in Germany because we’ve been offered an artist-in-residence – basically a house to go and hang out and be part of the community and try and be a creative influence on the community. So we’ll do the end of summer and autumn over there and then we’ll be home for Christmas,” Gentz concludes.

Hussy Hicks will be playing the following dates:

Thursday 4 April – The Rails, Byron Bay NSW
Saturday 13 April – Royal Mail Hotel, Goodna QLD
Sunday 14 April – Fisho’s, Gold Coast QLD
Friday 19 April – The Australian Hotel, Ballina NSW
Friday 26 April – Apollo Bay Music Festival, Apollo Bay VIC
Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 April – Fairbridge Festival, Pinjarra WA
Wednesday 1 May – Indi Bar, Scarborough WA
Friday 3 May – Clancy’s Fish Pub, Fremantle WA
Saturday 4 May – Hyde Park Hotel, West Perth WA
Sunday 5 May – Redcliffe On The Murray, Pinjarra WA

Daniel Cribb

Drum Perth (Apr 4, 2013)