Interview with Melbourne singer, songwriter Daisy Spratt
February 5, 2020 | By Emma Crameri Courtesy of Brisbanista
We chatted with Melbourne singer and songwriter Daisy Spratt:
How do you describe your sound?
It’s eclectic and flows between Americana, country and pop. I don’t feel my genre can be placed in one box. It’s uplifting and easy listening.
Who or what inspires your songwriting?
I’m about to come up to my one year anniversary, being married, and marriage definitely teaches you a lot and challenges you (well it has for me haha). Milestones like that inspire me, and reflecting on my journey getting to this point in my life. Just on the songs I have currently released, the majority of them are some form of love songs, however, things going on in the world, my family and my faith, also play a role in the ‘inspiration’ process. I have a song I wrote for my parents called “A Song For You”. A few of the songs are for my husband, like “Nothing Like I Expected”, “River” is about my faith and letting go, “War” is about a lot of things haha! But was inspired by a lot of social unrest in the world at the time, and the need for people to stand up for what they believe in.
What inspired your latest release, ‘Think Again, Boy’?
The original draft of the song was inspired by a moment when I was feeling really down about myself and my music. I felt I was being underestimated and wanted to prove a point. However, when I took the song to Brandon Hood and we started tidying it up, it turned into this upbeat and fun song about all those emotions directed at a guy in a bar, and the idea about people judging only on face value, as opposed to getting to know the person and who they are. I love it because it’s got a different vibe and attitude to my previous singles.
Tell us about ‘Love Like That’ and ‘Soda Pop’?
‘Love Like That’ was the first song I ever officially released in 2016, so it was a big moment for me to kickstart my career. I co-wrote the song with Steve Deal, who was based in Sydney at the time. He was a family friend from when I was really little, and I did a trip to Sydney twice, where we wrote and recorded some demo’s (unreleased) and ‘Love Like That’. I was young at the time, so the song was taking metaphors of what I thought love would look and feel like, relaxed in a Mustang with wind blowing through your hair haha!
‘Soda Pop’ was my second single that was released in 2017, and also featured on my EP released in 2018. I originally wrote the song for an American DJ, and it wasn’t what they were looking for, so I pitched the idea to Melbourne producer, Simeon Shinkfield, and he loved the concept. Once again, it is a love song, but comparing the person you love or care about, to a cold ‘soda pop’ on a ‘scorching’ hot day. It was fun to be able to explore sounds that were more poppy at that time as well. A lot of people think I wrote it about my husband, but I didn’t know him at the time when I wrote the original draft. It actually isn’t about anyone in particular haha!
How was the Tamworth Country Music Festival?
It was great! I make it a family trip with different family members each year. This year I went with my cousin, my mum and a few family friends to join in on the fun. I met some cool musicians and learnt about their journey, like Melbourne-based artist, Michelle Gardiner. My biggest highlight was performing at the local pub in Wallabadah, NSW. It’s this cute little town way south of Tamworth, and the people were so lovely and friendly. I just felt I got to share some love and light with them there, which is why I do what I do.
Are you heading to Nashville this year?
I am hoping to be there in the second half of the year, but plans are always changing depending on performance dates and where I need to be. But yes, I am aiming to.
Is performing in Nashville anything like the TV series (of the same name)?
Haha, I’m a die-hard fan of that show! One of the best series going around. Yes, it is similar. The show really dives into the realities of the music industry, and what it’s actually like for musicians and songwriters. It’s not the glitz and glam all the time that it can appear to be, which you see with all the artists in the show. It’s a lot of networking, and performing in small pubs and cafes to less than 40 people, it’s writing and writing until you get a song that’s good to record, it’s dealing with people that want to take advantage in different ways etc. The performances you see at the ‘Blue Bird Cafe’ on the show, in my opinion, is quite similar to a lot of the places you perform at in Nashville, in terms of the vibe as well.
Tell us about your creative process?
I use an app on my phone to store lyric ideas, but also my recordings of guitar chords or melody ideas I have. I book time aside each week where I devote time to just writing, or co-writing. For me, the lyrics come first about 90% of the time. I love words, good metaphors, analogies and creating good poetry. The melodies often come after that for me. When I try to find a melody, I just pick up my guitar, and start messing around with chords on different capos, until I find a sound that suits the lyrics I wrote. It doesn’t always happen straight away though, and sometimes those melody ideas come to life when I’m co-writing and bouncing off other people as well. I always use my husband for a sound board, when I’m in the initial stages of a song, to hear his thoughts.
What’s the most common myth about singers?
That it’s not that hard! Haha! It is hard being a singer, if you do it properly to make a living (or try). There’s a lot of mental work that goes into it, rehearsals, learning songs, writing songs, singing lines over and over again in the studio, trying to connect with people when you perform. It takes a toll on your whole body, so it’s important to be doing warm-ups and warm downs, getting good rest etc. Plus, most singers and performers get adrenaline rushes, and you have all this energy and then very quickly crash when you finally get back to your room haha!
What’s been the highlight of your career so far?
I did a gig last year in Melbourne, and I personally didn’t do my best. I messed up the chords in one of my songs, but the audience didn’t seem to notice. When I finished, a few of the other artists on before me, came up to say how great I was. They even started asking what I’ve done to get this far, who is my manager, asking about my writing. I remember thinking, “gosh I’m not even a big deal haha! I’m just like you guys”, but they obviously connected with my songs. If people don’t like your music, they’re not going to go up to you to say you’re great. That was a highlight, and confirmation for me that this is what I’m meant to do.
Who or what inspires you?
My mum inspires me, in terms of general life. She has balanced so many things between work, raising us kids, being a good wife, trying to help the community, and she really pushed me in high school to not give up on my dream to pursue music, when a lot of people were telling me not to do it, as well as just being a great example of a strong woman and mother.
Do you have any predictions for the music industry?
I think there is a shift and a synergy (that’s already happening) that is becoming more apparent between country and pop. I also think a new era of Americana style music, mixed with pop, is already opening up, and artists like the Teskey Brothers are an example of that here in Australia. The music industry, in general, can be tough, in the sense that people want to place you in a box, “where does this person fit? What genre are they?”. But I think we’re in a time where people want to feel something, and connect with the song, regardless of the box the artist is in. Kacey Musgraves has pushed the boundaries of country with her latest album, with what is considered cosmic country in her style. You have artists like Tash Sultana shredding guitar, and her unusual vocals getting so much traction, as opposed to the contemporary pop we usually hear on radio, and it’s because people feel something. Listeners want something different, and so do I as a listener of other artists. I don’t want to hear copies of artists, or songs that sound the exact same as all these other people. There’s enough space and opportunity for more genres to emerge, and for artists to explore their creativity fully, without being limited by what boxes they need to tick.
Do you have any plans for the future?
Definitely! Always planning haha. My music video for ‘Think Again Boy’ is about to drop on February 7th, so we’re preparing press and interviews about that. I’m planning ahead for the second half of the year for festivals. Another line of releases are also in the works, but I won’t be announcing or releasing anything about that for a number of months. My main focus at the moment writing good songs.
About Daisy Spratt Daisy Spratt is an Americana artist from Melbourne, Australia. Her music is toe-tapping, inspiring and uplifting, with a positive message.
Her self-titled debut EP has recently been released on November 5, 2018, with a brand new single, ‘Think Again Boy’, released on November 8, 2019.
In 2016 she released her debut single, Love Like That, which got to the top 10 of the country iTunes charts. In 2017, she released her second studio single, Soda Pop, which got into the top 40.
Through the release of her debut EP she aims to gain airplay on national and international radio stations, more streaming through Spotify, as well as opportunities to network with other musicians and producers. She hopes that her new songs will take her to the next level in her music career, with the goal of eventually writing a full album and touring the globe.
Currently, her songs, Love like That and Soda Pop are being featured on Australian Tiger Airway flights across Australia, and rotation was extended into 2019 due to positive passenger feedback.