Sure we’ve heard about you before, but we think it’s time for Tone Deaf to get to know you a little better. Slip in to something comfortable while we put on some music, pour us a couple of drinks and turn the lights down low. So, tell us about yourselves…Who are you – who who? We really wanna know….
Who are you and what do you do in your act?
Stef – We are Adelaide rock band Imogen Brave… singer Stef Crowley, drummer Andy Cienciala, guitarist Mick McClounan and bass player Neil Pearce. Our music fuses old school rock and hard rock with modern pop elements.
‘Fess up. What records have you stolen from your parent’s record collection and why?
Stef – my parents were very religious and not overly into music. The only music I remember being played in the house when I was a kid was Christian hymn cassette tapes… the best of which was Hillsong and Amy Grant… she was mum’s favourite singer. Dad liked AM radio talkback. I attribute my musical interests to mum and her letting me sneak a peek at music on TV every now and then.
Mick – Believe it or not I stole a Roger Whittaker album cos my Dad used to listen to him all the time and he passed away and it’s what reminds me of him. Also I took some classical records like Peer Gynt and some old 50s records like Bill Haley and the Comets!
What’s on heavy rotation on your iPod right now?
Stef – I’ve been spinning The Pretty Reckless and Dead Weather for months now. Both of them rock my world. But I’m also loving Adele’s album 21… great voice! Gotye’s new stuff is fused into my brain, and his collaboration with Kimbra has introduced me to her fabulous sound. Silversun Pickups and Ozzy Osbourne’s newest album are also getting a spin right now. So a mixture of different stuff really.
Mick – Stone Temple Pilots , Tonic and the Pretty Reckless.
‘Home taping is killing the music business was the catch-cry of the record industry in the 1970s, but it managed to survive until now. What do you think is the difference between mates taping copies of friend’s records back in the 80s and 90s and file sharing now?
Stef – Ahh interesting question. Advances in technology means that information travels at much quicker speeds and at much higher volumes. The effort required to now copy music to distribute it and receive it is so minuscule that is now more than ever particularly easy to do. The beauty and the bane of technology.
Mick – Tapes never captured the full quality of the record. Nowadays with file sharing, the bit rate and quality of files is almost if not as good as the original CD itself. Given that it’s even harder for artists to make money, this takes away any reward for the artist to enjoy some return for their work. Of course, a lot of artists including us, do it for the pleasure of making music and having people enjoy it.
You must answer this question honestly or we steal your rider. What was the first gig you went to? Where was it and what was the venue?
Stef – Offspring, Adelaide Entertainment Centre in 1999. I was a country girl growing up, so my first concert was a big event… It was a full on day trip to the city. I was 14 and went with a bunch of girls I’d only met once. It was probably the best night of my life up to that date.
Mick – mine was a Cold Chisel gig when they played at our school social. I was in my first year of high school! My first big gig was Peter Frampton at Adelaide Oval.
What’s your favourite site to download music from and do you ever pay for it? Can we find any of your releases there?
Stef – Itunes. I’m kinda a Mac nerd nowadays and I like doing things legit. However, I can’t say I’m completely innocent… I have downloaded a few shared music files in the past. Imogen Brave’s stuff isn’t available for purchase online just yet… watch this space (Oct 1st)!
What artist made you want to pick up an instrument and/or sing?
Stef – I loved Jewel as a teenager, as well as Alanis Morissette, Hole and Nirvana and Led Zeppelin. Thats when I really started to pick up a guitar and pluck away, not that I was ever any good or dedicated enough. Singing was always it for me. I think the first song I taught myself on guitar was ‘Foolish Games’ by Jewel… that and ‘American Pie’. When I was a kid the Spice Girls were the first music I was allowed to listen to, I loved them and was convinced I would be in an all girl pop band one day. I knew about The Beatles of course and Elvis, but I was really very naïve to music.
Mick – Initially it was the Beatles when I was really young and then bands like Boston , Supertramp, Black Sabbath and of course Led Zeppelin just increased my desire to play. My love of Boston and Led Zeppelin is one of the main reasons I play Gibson Les Paul guitars today.
Have you ever been arrested?
Stef – Never! Only a speeding fine or two really. Sorry to disappoint!
Mick – Yes I have! And no I’m not telling the story!! haha
Do you have any particular ritual before you go on stage, or even a lucky charm you take with you?
Stef – Nope. I used to hate talking to people before singing, and when I was doing covers I hated talking between sets coz it stressed me out… Now though I just have a beer and am literally sipping beer and chatting with friends as I’m stepping onto stage… A big stage event, however, may be different.
Mick – A t shirt…any one really, just so long as I feel comfortable in it! I often like to just have a quiet moment before I play!
What’s been your most outrageous rider request?
Stef – Just having one is freeking amazing. No seriously, some places we’ve played in the past let you have bottled water and some others nothing. I’d rather get an esky of Teds than nothing thats for sure! Usually it only works out to two per band member. Some venues are really great to their artists though some better than others. Bring on the blue M&Ms!
Mick – Back in the day when I played in Kickstart, riders were really good so we used to get food and beer and spirits so nothing outrageous as such however the singer once asked a pillow and blanket cos we had toured for 2 weeks in the Eastern states and he was shagged!
Because it’s more fun to do things together, which living Australian artist would you most like to collaborate with? Tell us why?
Stef – Vocally as in a duet type setup?… hmm I’d have to say Daniel Johns. Even though he’s kinda whacked out loony now he’s a musical genius… I’ve watched his musical journey as well as his perceived personal journey and his music has certainly evolved and reflected his experiences. Otherwise Tex Perkins, Rai Thistlethwayte, Nick Cave or all great frontmen in their own way… I’d also love to pair up with Katy Steele, or Washington. Each of them really hold their own and I admire them and their musical talents immensely.
Mick – Katie Noonan. I’d like to write a song that Steffi and Katie do a duet on. I just love her voice . One band I think would be great to do something with would be Horsehead! Love that band and very underrated.
Right, let’s get really intimate. Tell us what releases you have that we can listen to with the lights down low, or even better, where we can see you play in person next.
Stef – You can get sexy with our tune ‘Desperate Lines, Open Doors’… thats available for free download on our Triple J Unearthed page as well as streaming on our other social media… Our next show, however, is on October 1st at Enigma Bar, Adelaide and this show is in fact our debut EP launch for ‘Open Heart’! Entry is $10 at the door, every person will receive a FREE copy of the EP upon entry.