“I think playing Norfolk Lanes has now become a rite of passage for many young and-up-and-coming bands in Fremantle. There’s always a band on the line-up that is on the verge of blowing up or about to do great things. It’s always exciting to be a part of an event like that. “
The free/all-ages Norfolk Lanes Youth Festival happens this Sunday, October 26, at the Esplanade Youth Plaza. BOB GORDON chats to San Cisco drummer and Norfolk Lanes alumni, Scarlett Stevens, who is also the Garage Trail Sale ambassador, in the lead-up to the event.
For San Cisco drummer, Scarlett Stevens, her memories of the band playing some years ago at the Norfolk Lanes Youth Festival are fond and many.
“I remember finishing Year 12 exams and letting my hair down at this awesome new music festival in Freo,” she recalls of when San Cisco performed in 2011. “Although the bands are young and up-and-coming the festival is attended by people of all different ages and feels like a big street party. I remember seeing Tame Impala in the late afternoon, it was a really hot summer’s day and it was pretty spectacular.”
Norfolk Lanes has become a popular and aspirational event for the Fremantle music community and continues to grow each year.
“It gives young bands a platform to play in front of other young music lovers and in a festival setting,” Stevens says. “I think playing Norfolk Lanes has now become a rite of passage for many young and-up-and-coming bands in Fremantle. There’s always a band on the line-up that is on the verge of blowing up or about to do great things. It’s always exciting to be a part of an event like that.
“This year will be pretty special for Fremantle because of the new location at the Esplanade Youth Plaza. This has been a huge step forward for the youth community with the skate park opening and it makes sense to hold the festival there.”
With the likes of Tame Impala, San Cisco, Grace Woodroofe, Georgi Kay, Rainy Day Women, The Growl, Morgan Bain and many more having made early appearances over the years at Norfolk Lanes, it must be said that they certainly seem to get it right with the programming.
“Yes indeed,” Stevens concurs. “The line-up is always pretty eclectic and I think it’s a good reflection of Perth’s awesome music scene. There’s pop, punk and electronic acts all sharing the line-up. I’m excited to see Hideous Sun Demon and Koi Child play this year.”
Stevens has from a young age been a strong presence within the Fremantle music community. Norfolk Lanes is but one day a year, but it’s a vibrant community all year ’round.
“Growing up in Freo was great,” Stevens says. “I have really fond memories of the Freo festival, watching bands at Mojos when it first opened and going to the Arts Centre for gigs on the lawn. It felt like a super creative place for musicians and artists and still is in many ways. “When I started playing gigs with The Flairz I remember other local bands being so supportive and I have forged many lasting friendships with so many Perth musicians because of that band and now San Cisco. It is a very positive place to make music and soak up other people’s musical goodness.”
Stevens is also an Ambassador for the Garage Sale Trail initiative happening nationally this Saturday, October 25, tailored to encourage people to visit local sales to find vintage and second-hand treasures and meet new people in their community. She’ll be at the City of Fremantle 720 ABC Community Garage Sale at King’s Square.
“The Garage Sale Trail started as an interactive and fun way to get people to repurpose and recycle stuff they no longer use by hosting a garage sale,” Stevens explains. “This Saturday thousands of garage sales will be held across Australia and I’ll be rushing around Freo trying to attend as many sales as possible. You can map our your trail and see what’s happening in your area by using the Garage Sale Trail website (garagesaletrail.com.au).”
Vintage clothes and rock’n’roll. They just go together don’t they?
“Yes! I love rocking out in my vintage finds.”
San Cisco are about to power up again with news of their second album release and a national single tour that kicks off at Mojos on Saturday, November 15, and Sunday, November 16 (all-ages matinee). It’s exciting times.
“Yes, very,” Scarlett says. “We have a single, Run, coming out at the end of the week and a national tour is with our buddies, GUNNS. We’ve finished recording the album and expect to have it out in the new year. It was great working with our mate Steven Schram (producer) again. We got to show him around our hometown Freo, which was heaps of fun.”
The Norfolk Lanes Youth Festival will feature Hideous Sun Demon, Koi Child, Elli Schoen, King’s Justice and Indecision, plus bands from South Fremantle Senior High School’s Approved
Specialist Contemporary Music Program (3 Minutes of Kaos, Currant Mood, Children Under 3, In Denial, Meanwhile in the Future, Downloading…, The Unknown) from noon-7pm.