The Sunshine Sounds music festival is back for the third year running. An all-ages event, held at Eumundi School of Arts on September 2-3, it will feature a phenomenal home-grown line-up of artists, including headline act Frente.
The hit-making ’90s band is celebrating the 30th anniversary of the release of its era-defining record Marvin the Album, and we caught up with half of the duo, Angie Hart, to discover what we can expect at this year’s festival.
What attracted you to the Sunshine Sounds festival?
Oh my goodness, what is not to like? A chance to visit Eumundi, to work with the kids at the School of Rock and working with Katie Noonan is always a great experience. We couldn’t say no.
You are gaining a whole new generation of fans who have been listening to their parents’ albums. How does that feel?
Yes! It’s been such a welcome surprise to find the diversity in age range at our shows. We expected the usual ’90s diehards, but we look out from the stage and see people aged from eight to 88 in the audience. That’s been a real thrill.
Did you ever imagine you would still be performing some 30 years later?
We’ve always believed in staying the course and just keeping on going, but we couldn’t know that there’d still be a relevance to our songs that we wrote all those years ago. We feel honoured to be receiving such great attention to our old favourites and the desire to hear new music is apparent as well. We couldn’t wish for better.
How has the Australian music industry changed over the past three decades?
Well, it is unrecognisable. Some for the better and some not. The camaraderie between bands is stronger than ever and that is obviously a positive. With so much of the making of music being DIY and there being very little financial recognition for that with streaming services and whatnot, people have had to support each other in their endeavours. The playing field is levelled and we all just want to make music.
You are part of the mentorship program at the festival with the Eumundi School of Rock students. What does that involve?
The kids are already rehearsing some of our songs for the gig, so that we can all play together on the day. We are looking forward to arriving early the day before the show, to rehearse and workshop the songs with everyone. It’ll be a learning experience both ways, which we love.
Do you enjoy working with up-and-coming artists?
Absolutely. The energy and optimism that fuels emerging artists is contagious. It reminds us of why we do this and what matters about making music.
What can people expect from the festival?
A weekend of community, family and music. It’ll be an immersive experience where we are all the audience and we are all the music makers. Time spent with friends and time making new friends.
Will you be playing all of your old songs as well as some new?
We will be playing lots of our favourites from the past 30 years – the hits, of course. We hope to air out a few new ones, as this’ll be the perfect setting.
You’ve written many Aussie classics. Which is your favourite?
We love Ordinary Angels to this day. It is always joyous and you can’t help but dance.