In a year of hard work, huge gigs and rave reviews, Carla Geneve cemented her name in the minds of music lovers all across WA. Her warm, honest lyrics, matched with gutsy vocals have put her and her band on line ups alongside some of Australia’s best live acts. MAGGIE BOCHAT sat down with Geneve ahead of her performance at RTRFM’s Distant Murmurs this Saturday, January 27 at the Rosemount Hotel to chat about the year that was, the importance of safer venues and looking to the future.
What are your highlights and favorite memories from 2017 as a musician?
I really enjoyed being a part of the Mojos Rising Competition. It was such a supportive and loving environment. Everyone could have a good time; it didn’t even feel like a competition. Just playing heaps of gigs with your mates. And playing with the Waifs was really cool.
Oh yeah! Did you meet them as well?
I did. I probably embarrassed myself as we’ll (laughs). It was incredibly cool and special.
I know you are a big fan of the Waifs. Is there any other acts you’d love to play alongside?
Probably Jen Choler at the moment. I just love her and her album last year was just incredible. I have huge respect for her as a person and as musician.
Did you see her play at Falls?
She didn’t play in Fremantle. I did see Camp Cope though, and they were just incredible. I’ve loved them for a long time.
What’s your feelings and opinions about their protest at Falls?
I am all for it! As a female at a music festival it sucks that you’ve paid to be there and have a great time and you’re just made to feel uncomfortable. I think they got together with Jen on another one and they were talking about the ageist aspects of those festivals, which I think really sucks because as someone that wants to be a musician, I want to have a long career where I can have a really fulfilling experience over my whole life. I don’t just want to get to 30 and have people that don’t want to book you… it just sucks.
Are there any other issues as a female musician that you have noticed popping up for you that you resonate with, or feel strongly about and affected by?
Feeling safe in venues is a huge one. As a musician, that is your workplace. In any other workplace if people were acting the way they act in venues towards you it would be horrible. Because there is alcohol and so many other factors it is hard to control. There are great methods that people can put into place to make that a more safe environment; not just for females but for everyone.
You write in a very intimate and raw and honest way. Do you ever feel nervous about sharing those experiences and stories?
I do actually – I have been recently, as I’ve been playing some smaller, more intimate shows. I realised I was just telling everyone my really personal feelings and events that have happened to me; but I just try not to think about it. But it does make me fairly anxious. It’s nice to reveal yourself in that personal way. I’m not the sort of person that would do that to people that aren’t my really close friends. It’s an interesting experience.
What kind of response do you think you get from being so honest?
When I hear artists that I love singing really personal songs… There’s something really special about it because it just feels so real. I hope that it would be something similar to that; the honesty is appreciated.
You’re playing Distant Murmurs this Saturday at the Rosemount Hotel, full of some really incredible WA acts. Is there anyone you are excited to play alongside?
I saw Ben Witt for the first time the other day at the Moon. He was solo and it just blew me away. I’m really keen to see him with his band. Demon Days are playing; I love all of them. Shit Narnia I love… Everyone on the lineup is incredible. Wooly Mammoth as well – they just moved into our old house! (laughs)
They came second in the Mojos Competition. And of course you won… That’s really nice to be apart of that. You’re so well ingrained in the community…
The Perth music scene is a just a really nice place to be. Even talking about the safer venues; being part of that community makes a lot of people feel safe. It’s a great community.
How has RTRFM supported you and helped you on your musical journey?
I think just being able to listen to it, hearing my friend’s songs being played on the radio, and hearing the incredibly interesting stuff that the presenters put on their programs is so cool. I spend so much time listening to it; I put it on in my car when I’m driving around. And everyone has been really supportive of our music. It’s been overwhelmingly nice.
You were in RTRFM’s top 20 most played tracks of 2017 for Red Rocks…
Yeah, I didn’t believe it. It was too cool.
So what do you have planned for 2018? Do you have plans? Or do you just go with the flow and let good things come to you?
We’ve got a little bit planned in the middle. We’ll do some more recording. We’ll release a single in March… Just playing more shows!
I can’t wait for more recordings. I think everybody’s really excited and eager for that…
It will be good to put something out that we’re doing at the moment, I can’t wait.