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Q&A w/ Ben Panucci

Have you been involved in any previous projects before this one?

Yes, I formed and play guitar in the band New Venusians. I also put out an instrumental Jazz album a few years back as Ben Panucci Trio. I also play (and have played) in a bunch of other musical projects such as The Cope Street Parade and Mister Ott.

How do you think social media has affected the Australian music scene?

I think people are either interested in, or going to events now. Not really sure how that worked pre social media.

What is your local scene like?

I think there are lots of incredibly talented and hard working musicians in my local scene. Unfortunately, living in Sydney means there aren’t heaps of venues for these talents to be realised by the public and, much of aforementioned musician’s time is spent doing mostly corporate work to make expensive rent. That said, I’m grateful for the venues and opportunities out there and want to work with the scene to make it better and not just neg out.

 Without invoking genre, describe your music…

Vocals, sometimes in harmony, singing lyrics about love and philosophical views/quandaries that sit atop of layers of electric guitars with intertwining chords and melodies, that are intermeshed with playful and pulsating synth bass and cruisey yet danceable drums.

Have you had the chance to play a show with any of your musical heroes? Who were they and what was that experience like?

I have! I play a lot of Jazz music outside of this original project that I’m on here yapping about. I was lucky enough to play a few times with the late Australian saxophonist Bernie McGann. The experience was both daunting and humbling.

What was your first ever favourite song?

Shaggy ‘Boombastic’

What’s the best show you’ve been to this year?

Best show isn’t very accurate, as it’s the only show I’ve watched this year… BUT, I did really enjoy it! Big Little Lies. Can highly recommend.

Are you playing any shows anytime soon?

Yes! June 29th at Vic on the Park.

How would you describe ‘success‘ for your band?

I guess success is achieved through one’s perception of their attainment of happiness. I personally won’t be happy until I’m selling out rooms bigger than Beyonce WHILE she’s in the same town as me. So basically, Yonce and I will be COMPETING for a crowd. So, someone will be like ‘oh hey, should we go watch Beyonce? I’ve head she’s got fireworks and dancers and cannons that shoot silvery lighting bolts into your eyeballs that travel around your entire body making every single morsel of your being quiver in sheer reckless abandon’ and then the other person will be like ‘That sounds pretty cool…but me, and everybody else I know are going to the MEGA PHONE STADIUM GRAND PALACE to watch Ben Panucci play guitar and sing, that’s gonna be heaps better’

Tell us 3 bands that we should be listening to/be keeping an eye out for?

Oliver Thorpe, Broken Mountain and Elizabeth Fader are three local artists/bands that I think are putting the hard yards in and making great music.