Well worth the Waif
BEAUTIFUL YOU is the name of The Waifs' latest album.
The album, released in August, was meant to be a collective effort in songwriting by the band.
After years writing their songs individually, Vikki Thorn, sister Donna Simpson and Josh Cunninghan wanted to write songs together.
But the idea failed terribly, and they went back to writing individual songs in a formula that has worked for them since 1992.
We spoke to Josh Cunningham ahead the start of the tour.
When did you write the songs you contributed for this album?
Two of the songs I wrote in this album are old songs. Twelve years old or about. Particularly Dark Highway.
What is the story behind that song?
It's a true story of something that happened to me.
I was driving to the city to visit some friends and got stuck on the side of the road somewhere remote in the country, and nobody would stop to help me.
There was no phone coverage and I tried to flag someone down.
I had to spend the night in the back of the van and since I had my guitar I wrote a song about that experience that same night.
It never quite fit on an album but it seemed to work on this one.
It's a bit of a comment about a world when people do not feel safe to stop and help somebody who obviously needs help.
How is it that you guys cannot write songs together?
(Laughs) I guess that we all evolved as individual songwriters. I think we used to sneak away and do it on our own. What happens is that we then bring the songs to the band and then everyone can contribute to finalise the songs.
Is there a main theme running through this new album?
Vikki has brought to the table this theme about longing for home. She lives in the States and I spend a lot of time there too. Songs like 6,000 Miles or February show this sense of Australian yearning and sense of belonging.
At the Bangalow A&I Hall on Tuesday, October 20 at 7pm. The show on Wednesday, October 21, has sold out.