Q&A Scene: Jon Panic ~ BLACK BIRD HUM

Tell us about your new single?

It’s called “Say You Want”.  This track features our mate Billy Fox (Chris Baker) on guitar.  He came down on the second or third day of our trip to the NSW Southern Highlands and he’d spent the drive down through the forest listening to the album “Kaya” by the Wailers.  The album is full of those beautiful lead guitar, clav and organ lines, but the guitar parts in particular are pretty unique. Anyway, Billy gets out of the car with that guitar lick in his head and the rest of the song sort of writes itself from there.  The lyrics start off from a pretty standard boy meets girl angle, but the story had a bit of a mind of it’s own and by the time the bridge comes around, it’s pretty clear our hero just isn’t getting the message that the girl’s not vibing on him. You want him to move on but he doesn’t.  And then we’ve run out verses to write his redemption in, so we have to leave him hanging with that tension. Maybe there needs to a Part 2 to this track where he comes good.

What’s your favourite work at this point in time?

The Bird by Anderson Paak.  I can’t move on from the track.  

Tell us a quick, on the road or studio, anecdote.

We played up at Solbar in Maroochydoore once and we’d booked ourselves into a guesthouse/backpacker place about 4-5 blocks away.  I think we all got in late in the day and no one really paid attention to how we got from the backpackers to the venue. So we play the gig, stick around and drink with the local Sunny-Coasters and have a great time and eventually stumble home.  Only, our drummer drifts away at some point and loses us and has no idea where to go. He knows it’s somewhere near the beach, but after knocking on a few wrong doors, gives up and goes to sleep on the beach. We wake up later the next day and stumble over for a swim and there he is, already bright red from sunburn, covered in sand.

What, or who, inspires you?

Anyone making good music, or any art for that matter.

Which song do you wish you wrote?

“When the night feels my song” by Bedouin Soundclash.  Everything about the song just feels good. The groove, the instrumentation, the lyrics and the harmonies.  You wanna sing along every time you hear it.

What’s next for you?

We go on tour for this track over the next couple months, the next track and tour follows straight after!  Then we’ve got a bunch of half-finished tracks we need to get back into the studio to wrap up, so looking forward to that too.

What’s your scene?

Our scene is the roots / reggae scene.  There are so many venues from Sydney to Noosa and back for us to play.  Byron has always been good, Bello, Coffs, Brisbane, and our home town of Sydney.  We’ve been really lucky that locally over the last few years there have been a couple reggae nights each week that we jump on board every couple of months.

BLACK BIRD HUM beg for some love in new chill reggae single ‘SAY YOU WANT’ 

Unrequited love is hard but it’s so much sweeter when you got a good soundtrack. BLACK BIRD HUM have given us that with their new single Say You Want’ which draws from traditional smooth reggae vibes and a touch of 60s doo-wop to bring an all together romantic and chill number to soothe your lovelorn heart.

It’s a  John Hughes teen crush movie plot in  3 and a half minutes. The song meanders through the emotional trajectory of finding love but then not quite knowing what to do from there. Do you tell the girl? How do you tell them? You just want some sort of sign! It’s the feelings we’ve all had and they’re so universal that these chill vibes will either offer immediate comfort for the love sick or transport you back to those days of Summer (lost) loves.

“The lyrics start off from a pretty standard boy meets girl angle, but the story had a bit of a mind of its own and by the time the bridge comes around, it’s pretty clear our hero just isn’t getting the message that the girl’s not vibing on him. You want him to move on but he doesn’t.  And then we’ve run out verses to write his redemption in, so we have to leave him hanging with that tension. Maybe there needs to a Part 2 to this track where he comes good.” Jon Panic (singer)

Best known as a party reggae band, this foray into the groovier, mellower side of the genre just shows how well this band take a range of  sounds and influences to create a diverse collection of songs in their hit parade. Something the band has been hard at work honing in and fine tuning their songwriting craft having recently spent a week holed up in the NSW southern highlands on a writing sojourn.

BLACK BIRD HUM’S previous single was well received by fans and critics alike

“SICK!!” Nkechi (Roots n All Triple J)

“Black Bird Hum know how to party!”TheMusic.com.au

Black Bird Hum are no strangers to the live stage relentlessly touring the country regularly. This has not only won them legions of fans but also made them a favourite amongst festivals. They’ve also shared the stage with Arrested Development (USA), The Melbourne Ska Orchestra, Collie Buddz (USA), Kingfisha, and more.

TOUR DATES

Saturday 14 July – Spring St Social, Bondi

Tuesday 17 July – Duo Smiggins Hotel, Smiggins

Wednesday 18 July – Smiggins Hotel, Smiggins

Saturday 21 July – Jax Bar, Perisher Resort

Saturday 21 July – Station Resort, Jindabyne

Sunday 22 July – Blue Cow Deck, Perisher Resort

Saturday 28 July – Federal, Toowoomba

Friday 10 August – 505, Sydney

Sunday 26 August – Liverpool Street FESTIVAL

Sunday 26 August -Steyne Hotel, Manly

Friday 14 September – Nimbin Roots FESTIVAL

Saturday 15 September – Royal Mail Hotel, Goodna

Sunday 16 September – Hoey Moey, Coffs Harbour

 

‘Say You Want’ is out now!

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About Mary Boukouvalas 853 Articles
Mary is a music photographer and reviewer.

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