What I’ve heard: Big break

What I’ve heard: Big break

Big Vacation is a fan of Sampa the Great, Golden Vessel and FRIDAY*, and he would really like to be featured on just one of The Beatles’ songs!

Listen to his debut before learning more about Big Vacation.

Who is Big Vacation and how did the name come about?

Big Vacation is an alt-pop project of mine, based in Eora/Sydney Australia, citing Nirvana, NOFX, Weezer, Powfu & Beastie Boys as some of the wide range of influences.

This project comes from the pure love of creating, finding a departure from what an artist, and hopefully an audience, might experience or expect when relating to an artist and music. So this project almost called itself because I wanted it to feel like a celebration of the norm.

What artists or bands are on your must-listen list lately and why?

The first is Sampa the Great – Sampa is a world-class singer-songwriter and has deservedly achieved global success with her music. In my opinion, one of the best artists in hip hop right now, the production is powerful and the world she has built with her message through her videos and live performances is so powerful.

Maxwell Byrne is two-for-one here – his two major projects, Golden Vessel AND 1 tablespoon are extraordinary. I love Maxwell’s approach to fully unleashing his vision on each project, as they both sit in completely different lanes. Independent, global and a really nice person too

Friday* is my next recommendation. He has a beautiful approach to his alt pop thread, with great production and live shows. His visuals are fantastic, oh, and he represents Western Sydney, where I’m from. Big love.

Powfu is my last mention. He does that lo-fi hip hop so well and carries that aesthetic into his candid visuals and videos that he draws from the way he lives as a man behind the music. Go and check out his catalog if you haven’t – “Sleeping on the Floor” is one I keep coming back to.

When you go into the recording studio to work on new material, what are your must-haves?

My essentials are:

– Starting points: I will make quick videos on my phone, even with voice notes, sometimes of mostly written songs, or it could be a particular style, beat, rhythm, drum sound that I can sing to directly. I like to have that starting point to keep everything flowing right from there.

– Time: I don’t like to be pressed by a hard deadline, however what I do like to do is set a timer on my phone (usually an hour at a time) and I’ll work non-stop until the bell rings. I’ll take a quick break, then put it back on and continue.

– Selection of guitars: usually nylon strings, strings or other electrics depending on the sounds I’m looking for and the bass will have everything I need.

– Trail mix and water: a jar of mixed fruit and nuts is so good for keeping up energy without weighing down with piles of food. Obvs water goes hand in hand with this too.

– Sleep: Ideally, being well rested helps.

Which song or songs of yours would you recommend to a first time listener and why?

‘Anchor Point’ is my debut single, so it’s almost a no-brainer that I’d recommend this to a first-time listener. If you like alt-pop with a lo-fi hip-hop twist, then you’ll love this.

What song by someone else (artist or band) would you like to play on and why?

A feature in just one of the The Beatles songs would be helpful. For a number of reasons, but mainly to ask George Martin a bunch of weird questions.

What made you want to become a musician and why do you continue to make music?

Music has always been around me in different ways. My dad was a jazz drummer and I remember falling asleep with records playing around the house when I was a kid, so I think that rubbed off on me. I love it in ways that are hard to fully describe, so I’ll just say that if you do things and they make you and others happy, maybe you should keep doing those things.

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