Interview: Charlie Collins On Her Intuitive Approach To Creating Music

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Set to play A More Perfect Union festival curated by Australian favourites Gang of Youths, as well as a recently announced Laneway slot, Charlie Collins captivates crowds with her personal brand of emotive rock. Her set at BIGSOUND was no different and I had the opportunity to talk to her about her new music, recording an album in the mountains and being herself.

What can audiences expect from your live show?

I grew up on country music and it's actually been something that's been embedded in me. So the music I've written is not a hundred per cent country but it's definitely got a lot of those country elements. I guess, it'll be more me. I think in previous projects, I felt like I was hiding behind another person. I tried to be someone else, which sometimes is good as an artist. But this is one-hundred per cent me. I wrote all the songs in my bedroom and just on my guitar and anyone that knows me will know what every song is about, it's very personal. So it’ll just be a big raw bang of emotions.

Raw emotions are everywhere on this project. How did you approach the recording process?

When we recorded these songs, it was me, my husband who plays the guitar, and a friend who plays drums. We rented out a house in the mountains and it was just the three of us. The two guys hadn't heard any of the songs before and I would just wake up at breakfast time, play the songs on my guitar and then jump on bass. We'd hit record, play whatever we felt and did that for every song on the record.

It seems like the album came about very organically. 

Yeah, one-hundred per cent! I didn't even really plan for it. I just kind of wrote a bunch of songs and I thought, 'oh I should record them' and after finishing, I just ended up really happy with how they turned out.

You mentioned this record is very personal. How important is it that your own persona lives within the project?

For me, it's really important. Personally, for me I've tried being that type of artist who has a separate persona and now I've realised for me, for my soul, I just need to be myself.

I definitely hear that when I listen to your music. It's very nostalgic and just a treat to listen to. 

That's why I wanted to make nice music to listen to, and a big inspiration for the record was A Deeper Understanding by The War on Drugs. It was just one of the most perfect moments, everything about that record blew my mind.

How much would you say this new project chronicles your life?

All these songs are from when I started music to now. They're about a really dark stage in my depression where I lost myself and didn't want to leave my house. Also, there's a lot about my music journey, love and family.

You’ve released a single ‘Wish You Were Here’ a few months ago, what’s next?

I've got an album ready. So I'm going to release two or three more singles, then I'm going to drop the record.

What can we expect from the album?

It's in a kind-of similar world to the single. That nostalgic, easy listening, really emotive vibe.

On a total tangent, you were affiliated with Tigertown, what’s happening with that project now?

So Tigertown was with my husband, his brother, and sister. It was such a beautiful journey we went on. We got to play and travel the world and had some of the most amazing experiences. But with everything, when things feel like they're coming to an end and also the other two members had babies, we thought we might close the lid. It was just a beautiful, mutual goodbye of something so great that we got to experience as a family.

Well, I’m definitely looking forward to hearing what you have in-store for us. Thank you for the chat!

Thank you!

Written by Roy Gordon (@yorgordon)

Click here to learn more about Charlie Collins' upcoming live dates w/ Gang Of Youths here