THE TEA PARTY INTERVIEW
Canadian iconic rockers THE TEA PARTY are heading back to Australia and bringing their genre-defying career to selected intimate venues across Australia this June.
The one constant at a THE TEA PARTY show is how deeply Jeff Martin, Jeff Burrows and Stuart Chatwood connect with their audience, you really feel; not just hear them during their performances. Complex and provocative THE TEA PARTY will be showcasing a treasure trove of songs from across their incredible catalogue and for the first time ever fans will get to witness this in intimate settings across cities and regional areas.
Twinmusix got to speak to Stuart Chatwood about The Tea Party upcoming tour and more.
TM - Hi Stuart, Thank You for taking this call with me today. This is Amelia from Twinmusix.
SC - Thank You for the interview.
TM - What can fans expect from your Australian tour?
SC - This is our 19th Tour Down Under so this is a celebration. We get to return to some of the smaller venues that we haven't played in a long time. We normally play the capital cities. We wanted to bring back some of the magic that the fans might have missed when we were growing on the first couple of tours. We are playing the metro in Sydney which is 1000 seats, instead of somewhere like the Enmore which has more seats. It is a nice way to interact with the fans again. We are also heading to some rural places and it is a great opportunity for fans to catch us at a smaller show.
TM - You just said you were playing smaller shows, so what is your favourite thing about playing smaller shows?
SC - Just a connection, we just played a show on Thursday in Canada and there were 4,200 people there and even though we had big screensto reach the people at the back you just don't make that connection. They can't feel your natural energy on stage. It is a magical occurrence when the band can play to the world. When the audience reciprocates, it just takes another show to another level and those other shows you always remember as the greatest shows.
I was fortunate enough to see the Rolling Stones in 2003 at a small club in Toronto was like everyone was on drugs naturally because there was so much energy.
TM - That is really cool, you got to see the rolling stones in a small club, what an experience.
SC - Yes, and that year we got to play with them at a big show in front of in front of 490,000 people, so we saw the opposite end of the spectrum.
TM - Was that a Festival?
SC - Well Toronto suffered in 2003 from the SARS virus, so they threw a big concert with Rolling Stones, AC/DC, and Rush. We were on during the day but the bigger bands were on at night time, it was the biggest crowd.
TM- That is sweet, what great bands to be playing with.
TM - what is your favorite memory from that concert and who was your favorite band?
SC- Well the best band hands down was AC/DC, because their music has been designed to play in stadiums. It has a simple catchy bass lines and Powerful drums.
My favourite moment was meeting The Stones before they went on stage. Keith Richards came over to talk to me and he tripped. I had to catch him, so I saved the show (laughs).
TM - (Laughs) Good catch and good work saving the show.
TM - How have you gone about picking your setlist for the Australian tour?
SC - We are going to try and play as many new songs of new EP as possible. It is going to be coming out in Australia. We already have two new songs in our set and they are going great. In addition to that, we have nine records so it is hard to pick. It is a tough decision each night and we just try and figure out what the crowd is going to like. We try and figure out the crowd and we also like going into our more obscure stuff.
TM - You just said you're bringing out your new EP, so what can fans expect?
SC - We are just finishing seven songs, everything gets done so quick now. We already have it approved, so we are hoping to have it done and shipped to Australia before the tour starts.
TM - Unfortunately I won't be here for your Australian tour to pick up a copy of your new CD. I'm sure it will be great though.
SC - Where will you be?
TM - You guys play on the same weekend as Hellfest, so I will be there.
SC -Where is that?
TM - Clisson in France
SC - Is Slash on it?
TM - Yes
SC - I am a good friend with Todd Kerns from Slash, I thought I saw it on his schedule. I don't know of the tea party is heavy enough though.
TM - I think you guys might get away with being on it. They put some rock stuff on there.
SC - I will look into it. They have two live festivals like that like Glastonbury.
TM - Have you played Glastonbury?
SC - We played Reading Festival once and I don't think we will play again.
TM - There are heaps of other festivals you can play.
SC - Thank You, I will definitely have a look.
TM - For six years you went on hiatus and then you came back together, what made you wanted to come back together as a band?
SC - We fell out, and we realized we were better together than apart. Our Shows back were incredible, it has made us so grateful for what we had too. We are grateful and very thankful that we haven't been forgotten. We are starting to see Rock come back with bands like Greta Van fleet.
TM - If you could collaborate with any band who would it be and why?
SC - I don't know we are happy doing stuff on our own I guess, we are happy to continue on that route.
TM - If you could have any band perform one of your song's which band would it be, which song would it be and would it be in your style of their style?
SC - We had William Shatner cover one of our songs and it was absolutely incredible and very obscure. Anyone is invited to cover one of our songs. I mean they are out there in the public. That is a tough question, I haven't really thought about it.
TM - You have done a lot of orchestra shows, what is one of your favorite?
SC - We did an orchestra set with the Melbourne Symphony and that was one of the greatest nights of our life. The sound in the hall was just amazing. We brought our composer over from Canada who arranged the music with us. It was an evening of classic rock and classical music.
TM - What was it like rearranging your music for an orchestra?
SC - Luckily I have been doing a lot of video game soundtracks, and a lot of that stuff gets written out for a 64 piece orchestra. A lot of our music is also orchestrated with a lot of different levels.
TM - Is there anything else you would like to say to your fans?
SC - Thank You for sticking with us and we have some great new music coming out. Next year will be our 30th anniversary and we have some more surprises coming for you in 2020.
TM - Thank You for the interview today, we really appreciate it and everyone is excited to have you coming back to Australia.