Hitting the road today on their national “Deficiency” single tour, the criminally underrated Sydney quintet Bad Pony were recently over on the other side of the world in Toronto, Canada for the annual music festival and conference Canadian Music Week. While there, I sat down with Jarred and Sam from the group to talk about how things have been going since we last sat down at Music Matters in Singapore, chat about the new single and their recent writing sessions with ex-Dropkick Murphys guitarist Marc Orrell – which interestingly was made possible thanks to All Our Exes Live in Texas? Read on to learn more:
I guess this is the lobby, there’s so many different levels here, of the Sheraton at Canadian Music Week in Toronto. Welcome to the conference / festival guys.
Sam Thomlinson: Thank you.
Jarred Young: Thanks very much man. It’s very fancy here.
It is. The last time I saw you guys though, we were also in similar fancy conference settings.
Sam: This is true.
Jarred: We’re not fancy dudes but, you know, this is nice.
Sam: We’ll take it. We’ll take what we can get.
We did sit down in Singapore. I don’t even think I have seen you guys in Australia. I think we’ve only hung out overseas.
Jarred: This is true. That’s not a bad thing, its quite lovely
It’s not a bad thing.
Jarred: It’s a trend I could get used to.
How are you finding the festival to be compared to something like Music Matters and Big Sound and all those sort of other events that you might have had some experiences in?
Jarred: It feels quite big, it feels very inclusive of tonnes and tonnes of different artists and stuff. Which is really cool. And already last night we got to see, which is kind of maybe sounds a little silly, but a lot of Australian bands and stuff who were amazing. Got to see Hockey Dad and The Dead Love.
Jarred: Yep, the Dunies.
Heard there were some Shoeys
Jarred: There were a few Shoeys
I like that the Shoeys made it overseas, that’s quite nice.
Jarred: Its really cool. But yeah, (Canadian Music Week) seems quite similar to Music Matters in a lot of ways but there’s nothing wrong with that.
Sam: It’s quite a larger scale. More bands.
Jarred: Yeah, yeah, more bands more venues.
Does that make it harder though to get people along to the shows? Have you played any yet?
Jarred: No. I mean I hope not. We will see tonight. We’re out recruiting at the moment going around to gigs and meeting people, and seeing bands, and making friends.
Sam: It’s a nice time as well, everyone’s really friendly and it is a nice time.
So, what has been going on since I last saw you in Singapore? Bring me up to date over the last six months or so.
Jarred: So since then we’ve put out a single and toured Australia. Then we had a little bit of time off over the end of last year and a few weeks ago we released another single called “Deficiency”. And we were just a few weeks in the US. We were in LA and New York and Philly playing some shows.
How did they go?
Jarred: Really good. Really, really good, it was surprising to go to the other side of the world and actually not play to nobody. It was lovely.
You can’t rely on your Mum’s at those shows.
Jarred: No, no Mum’s friends though. Yeah, they came out. Yeah we had a writing session in LA. The first time co-writing with someone. A dude called Marc Orrell, who used to play in Dropkick Murphys. That was really cool.
Sam: Definitely on of the highlights to the trip so far.
Jarred: Yeah and we learned a lot from that. Now we’re here and we go back on the weekend and start our Aussie tour for the single. In Hobart on May 6th.
And does that take you through the month?
Jarred: Takes us through the month and we’ve also been recording so we’ve got a bunch more stuff ready to go this year. It is exciting
Sam: We took that time off over January to kind of consolidate a few different song ideas and start to plan this year of what we’re gonna do with releases and how we’re going to structure our releases and what’s coming out when and stuff.
Getting the plans together?
Jarred: Yes, getting the plans together. Sam’s speaking through your answer cause he’s had like three hours sleep. Well done.
I am right there with you and you look freezing as well.
Sam: It’s cold here. I like it though.
It’s not that cold. Like its brisk, lets put it that way.
Sam: It’s brisk. I think its not that cold but the thing that is cold here is the wind. When the wind hits you you’re like shit and now I am cold.
And we go to 100 degree temperatures tomorrow so I am like just try to stay out of the cold as much as I can so I don’t get fucking pneumonia.
Jarred: That’s going to be a wild time.
So something like Music Matters. Did you get much out of that? Did you find that there’s more interest in that market? In the Asian market now? Are you going to try to get back up there?
Jarred: We’d love to go back there I am not sure how much of an impact it had on us over there. But yet we’d would love to go back and tour Southeast Asia.
Sam: The good thing about playing over there with the little pockets and the little shows and stuff, we obviously, made a few friends. And the shows that we played were good but they were to small crowds of people and stuff. So the impact is small but was positive. And it’s the same with coming to the US. We kind of knew that coming here, we thought that we wouldn’t be playing to many people. We thought we would be trying to recruit like fans at shows and show people while we are supporting bands what we have to offer. But in the end it was, it has kind of been a different experience to that. There were more people coming out to shows and there are little pockets of people that know our music and stuff in different cities which is really cool. People going out of their way to help us as well. We’ve got people that were dragging us down to Philly to do shows and its really cool.
Jarred: Willingly, I wouldn’t really say dragging. “No, I hate this.”
Sam: Yeah it’s really cool. I think we didn’t really expect that level of commitment from people that like our music. Which is really cool.
You must find that too that doing these sorts of shows in these types of climates really helps make you a better band. Not to get too kind of self-congratulatory but its like you get thrown in these situations. You get dragged to Philadelphia, you go to Singapore, you come to Toronto then you must go back to Australia and be like, hey we can fucking do this. We can actually play a good show.
Jarred: Yeah, yeah, its funny how different crowds react in different countries as well.
Sam: Even different cities
Jarred: Yeah, totally. We do sometimes banter a bit on stage with our Australian sarcasm and what not and just some of the cities in America just did not. So cold. Such a cold reception. And others would have a bit of a laugh with us.
Sam: I think at the same time you would talk to people afterwards and they are like yeah you guys are such a fun band and stuff. And we’re like you didn’t seem to think that at the time.
Was that LA, because that just sounds like LA?
Jarred: Yeah a little bit, but still it has been amazing and couldn’t put it in to words completely how much we’ve had an incredible experience. One of the coolest things, coming over here that we were surprised by was writing with Marc Orrell from Dropkick Murphys and how much we learned that day recording with him. We had no idea what we were in for we left the house to meet him at one o’clock. By the time we were writing it was eye-opening just his enthusiasm and the way he was working as a producer. We always produce our own stuff and we work hard at ideas and if a song works we’ll push it but so often we drop things.
We’ll be like that’s not working, that’s not working and we kind of give up and move on to the next idea. With Marc, he just kept going. He kept pushing, pushing, pushing and a few times we were kind of like thinking the song was maybe not working and he would push harder, and push harder and by the end of the day we had an awesome song out of it. That through the many dips of the day we thought wasn’t gonna work and in the end really, really did work. And he kind of showed us that work ethic of a good producer that just keeps pushing you.
So how did that come about? How did you end up working with him?
Jarred: So, weird story actually. We bought all our gear in LA when we flew in so before we went I was trying to suss out some gear on Craigslist and got in touch with this dude who had a snare drum. So I put a down payment on the snare drum. Meanwhile, our friends, All Our Exes In Texas, were here doing some writing sessions. We got to talking to them and just sort of mentioned that that sounded really interesting and its something that we’d love to do. So they intro’d us on the email and it was the same dude I bought the snare drum from.
Oh all right.
Jarred: Just by chance. Like the only other person I had spoken to in LA was Marc Orrell, so that’s how that came about.
It ain’t about what you know is it.
Its amazing. That’s a testament to kind of though the industry and how things sometimes just fall into place. What do you think will come out of those sessions? Will there be some music that will come out of it?
Jarred: Yeah totally we’ve got a pop banger ready to go.
Sam: We literally just wrote, well Jarred already had the song kind of written, but we produced the whole song in a day pretty much. We will probably go home and take the files into our studio and maybe re-record some stuff but generally speaking its a finished song. Which is really cool.
Don’t miss Bad Pony on their “Deficiency” Australian Tour, which kicks off today in Adelaide. Here are all the dates:
11th May | Grace Emily, Adelaide
12th May | Yah Yah’s, Melbourne
19th May | Beach Hotel, Byron Bay
20th May | Night Quarter, Gold Coast
21st May | Black Bear Lodge, Brisbane
25th May | Strawberry Boogie, UOW Wollongong
26th May | Moonshine, Manly
27th May | Chippendale Hotel, Sydney
For tickets and more details head to their Facebook page.
Photos by tedsrecords.com