Who are you and what are you doing here? (what is your name?)
H: I am Helen Austin from Big Little Lions and I’m here because someone left the door open and I snuck in 😉
P: I am Paul Otten, also from Big Little Lions and I’m here for a social experiment.
How did the band start?
H: We originally met at a conference where we were both on a member success panel but it wasn’t until a few years later that we started writing together after I asked Paul to produce the title track for my recent JUNO Award winning album. I loved what he did and so at the beginning of 2013 BLL was born.
How would you describe your band?
H: We are an upbeat, joyous alt folk band who makes music to make people smile.
P: A perfect musical marriage.
If you had to choose one song you’ve written that best defines your band which one would it be?
H: For me it would have top be The Way Home because it’s that mix of organic instruments, rich harmonies and positive lyrics that is pervasive in our music.
P: I really dig “Make It Up As We Go Along.” The multi-part harmonies, the percussive groove and the overall organic vibe and upbeat attitude pretty much sums up the kind of music both of us enjoy listening to and creating.
In this day and age where anyone is pretty much able to pick up an instrument, what would you say sets your band apart from the rest?
H: Anyone can pick up an instrument but it take hours of real practice and experience to play well and between us, we have many, many years of professional writing and performing experience, which I think sets us apart. Certainly my own experience of being a musical comedian for more years than I care to mention means that I can handle pretty much anything that gets thrown at me (literally and figuratively).
P: I would agree with Helen. We have many combined years of performing and writing experience. And I think what also sets us apart is our willingness not to stick to the same formula from song to song. And of course the fact that we make all this music while being thousands of miles apart from each other.
Where are people able to hear your songs?
Are you playing any shows anytime soon and do you have any plans for a trip down under?
H: No plans right now but hopefully in the near future. I have family in Sydney so would love a trip down under 🙂
P: I’d love to take a trip down under at some point!
What is your proudest moment/greatest achievement as a band?
H: Hearing our music placed on TV shows. It’s so amazing to hear your own composition being broadcast and I love the wider audience that it gets us.
P: Yes, hearing the songs we created playing in a TV show or commercial is a very rewarding feeling.
Tell us 3 bands that we should be listening to/be keeping an eye out for?
P: Good Old War: Flawless 3 part harmonies, excellent musicianship and song craft.
The Wood Brothers: They’ve been around for some time, but aren’t as big as they deserve. Amazing live. Again, great 3 part harmonies and killer acoustic grooves.
Milk Carton Kids: Just found these guys via a friend’s recommendation. Very Simon & Garfunkel. Harmonies and melodic shifts that could make a grown man weep.
Anything else you’d like to add?
H: Just that I am so excited to get our music out to a wider audience and I love the name of your website!
P: Helen and I never stop writing music. So brace yourselves, y’all will be hearing new music from us for a long time to come.