Jump For Joy
The Joy Evelation release their latest EP, Stain, this Sunday, May 17, with a show at the Oddfellow in Fremantle. Singer/guitarist Mia Joy tells SHANE PINNEGAR how they came to be recording in the city of angels, LA.
“That’s the wonder of social media,” she explains enthusiastically. “Probably 2012, through Facebook I connected up with Dino Maddalone. He’s a Grammy award winning producer and a really good drummer. He’s done lots of stuff over in LA and has his own studio. He also has a TV program over there for Warner (The Ask Dino Show). He heard that we were coming out to LA the first time and wanted to put us on his show, which he did. From there we grew a friendship. When we were in L.A. we went out with him so we stayed friends.
“The next time we went back to L.A. our original band members didn’t want to go – they pulled out at the last minute. I had a tour booked and everything, so I rang him up. I said ‘Dino, you’ve got to help me out – these guys can’t come. If you know any new blokes that would be interested…?’ He said, ‘Well, I’ll do it, and I’ve got a really cool bass player.’ I’m like, ‘Okay!’
“We went over [and] rehearsed for about an hour and a half and they were amazing. I was blown away. I was like a bunny in the headlights. I was like, ‘Oh my God. They know my songs better than me. I’m having my ass kicked right now.’”
That bass player was Dig Lewis, a veteran of many tours and recordings with the likes of John Mellancamp, Stevie Wonder, Boz Scaggs and another of Joy’s favourite acts.
“Tina Turner – who I really love,” she enthuses, “He’s like royalty, [and] he’s so humble you’d probably never hear about. He’s done a lot of Motown stuff. He’s done an incredible amount of stuff and has his own production company now. He’s an amazing musician to the point where I’m like, I don’t even know how I got to play with him, but he’s got a really good music company.”
After recording the rhythm section in L.A. and her and musical partner Rob Garnett’s parts back in her own studio, Joy is beside herself with excitement about the new material.
“[The songs] are quite different from what we’ve done before. We’ve got a whole new lot of material which we’re going to bring out as an album in October, and we’re venturing [into some] different areas. I don’t know where it’s going to end up. I love rock, blues, soul… so, I don’t know. I’ll let it grow and see what happens.”
On their trips to Los Angeles The Joy Evelation have managed to play at iconic rock venues on the Sunset Strip such as The Whiskey A Go Go and The Viper Room.
“We played there originally in 2012,” explains Joy, “and then went back last year and played with Gus G. He is from Ozzy Osbourne’s band. That was interesting. We also played at The House of Blues. That was really cool too.
“Actually, it sounds ridiculous,” she continues, “but [playing the Whiskey] is actually one of the pinnacles of me ever doing anything in music. It’s just incredible that you’re in a venue that is so iconic and has such a history of the people playing there.
On top of the dynamic new Stain EP getting its launch this weekend, they’ve just been announced to support the Baby Animals and Superjesus She Who Rocks tour on Friday, 22 May, and there’s the album to finish. She’s also recording an acoustic album to be released under her own name, but that is “…on the back burner of the moment while we’re doing all this.”
In addition to singing and some voice over work, Joy has also dabbled in acting and says she wanted to be a performer from as young as she can remember.
“I’m really shy. which can come off as being snobby or arrogant,” she explains, “but on the other side, probably from when I was 1, I was standing in front of the TV and singing and dancing and saying ‘Don’t you watch the TV, watch me!’”