the AU interview at SXSW: George Maple (Sydney) talks living in LA, Future Classic and more

  • Debbie Carr
  • March 26, 2015
  • Comments Off on the AU interview at SXSW: George Maple (Sydney) talks living in LA, Future Classic and more

2015 will no doubt be George Maple’s year. The Future Classic star first won fans nationally in 2014 with her debut EP Vacant Space and had everyone singing along to lead single ‘Talk Talk’. Now the singer-songwriter is making waves overseas, grabbing the attention of music heavyweights in Los Angeles, San Diego and New York City.

Her latest achievement is appearing at SXSW in Austin, Texas where she performed five times across the festival. the AU review caught up with George Maple after one of her performances to talk about what it’s like living abroad, who she would like to collaborate with and her artists to watch at SXSW.

Welcome to South By South West, how’s the festival treated you?

It’s been really good! I mean we’re on our fifth show now so that’s been pretty intense but it’s been so much easier than I thought it was going to be. The sounds have been great, the performances have been great, the response has been good so I’m happy.

I saw you’ve played LA on the way over, first time playing there?

Yeah, it was crazy. We sold it out! It was mental because I haven’t done a headline gig yet and it’s amazing when I could play all the songs, like I’ve done so many showcases where I’m like oh I can’t play this song because it just doesn’t ‘bang’ as much as I need it to bang. And so, it’s been really nice.

How have you found your music to have travelled here? You know, before you came here, were you finding there to be interest in your music through Facebook and all that?

I guess you never know when you go overseas, you never know who likes it, who doesn’t. I think I was very surprised with the response in LA, the project’s still so small and it manages to reach that many people in the US, which is really cool. Yeah, I guess we’ll see what happens during the year!

Indeed. How long do you spend here? Is it a pretty quick trip, do you head back home soon? I know you have some shows in Australia.

Yeah I’m here until I leave for that. I’m doing something special at the end of April here which I can’t talk about yet but yeah it’s quite a long trip. I spend a lot of time over here anyway.

What’s your general feeling of your future trajectory then, are you going to continue spending a lot of time over here do you think?

I think so, I mean, for me I’m primarily a songwriter so being in LA makes a lot of sense being able to connect to other pop artists and sort of help them out. It’s a place where I’ve always wanted to be and now I have a visa so I can be there. I think I’ll just spend my time between Australia and LA at the moment, and London of course. It’s kind of the same as it’s been for the last three years.

But it’s just a bit more, I guess, of a mission now every time you go to a certain place.

Yeah, it’s just a little bit more focused.

And while you’ve been at South By obviously it’s been a total cluster-fuck but I’m sure you’ve managed to see some music along the way. Have you gotten to see much of anything?

I’ve gotten to see Lolawolf, Zoe Kravitz. I love Zoe Kravitz, she’s awesome! I thought that was cool and then Hiatus Kaiyote you can hear them in the background. Then I’m hoping to see, I didn’t realise I just saw that Lapalux were playing. I’d really like to see Lapalux, I’ve seen him before and then probably Rome Fortune I think. That’s my selection.

And being a part of Future Classic who has its advantages now overseas, have you found that at all because of their successes?

Yeah! I think more from a media point of view, I think there’s a lot of interest from the media. From the public point of view, it’s still a small brand but you know it’s been good. It’s nice. It’s good, it’s a niche and it’s expanding.

I arrived just as you were finishing up here so tell us a little bit about how you’ve taken your live show into this ‘set up for five minutes and jump into it environment,’ although I think you would’ve had a bit more time to set up today.

We did actually! We were really lucky to get a sound check, which is kind of unheard of at South By but it was great. Taking the live show into a live environment has just been a balance of trying to keep the sonics of the track while adding that live energy, and I think that it has to be a different experience to it than on your iPod. You know, I sing differently and I perform differently and I’m just trying to give as much energy as possible.

And that keeps it interesting for you as well!

Exactly, try and change it as much as possible.

And when you get back to Australia, I see the Sydney shows have sold out.

I know, I can’t believe it. I cannot believe that, it’s crazy! It should be fun. I’m excited about bringing the full show to everyone because here you do little showcase things so I’m very excited about it. I’ve got all my costumes ready and in my head how it’s all going to play out – you’re going to get a show!

That must be why you’ve wanted to tour for a long time.

So much! I mean, I love pop music and I love the way that pop music is presented and I feel like it’s a lot of fun for me. I like to do a lot of different things so thinking about how the stage is going to be presented and about how the outfits are going to work within the context of the music and how the set’s going to flow, and all of that I really enjoy. So it’s nice to have the opportunity to do that to a sold out audience, which is great.

And maybe, not to jinx anything, but spending time in LA… are there any artists that you would love to collaborate with over here?

I’ve got a bunch of people that I’ve been talking to and I’m always meeting people but I think for me the best collaborations are so natural. So you might meet someone at a party, I rarely ask my management to hook anything up. I think that if it’s going to happen, I’ll ask a friend and then ask someone to ask someone so it works like that. I feel like that’s more natural.

Definitely, that’s the only way it can go down without feeling forced and ending up in a McDonald’s commercial – not that that wouldn’t be amazing.

It was that Justin Timberlake song, remember, ‘I’m Lovin’ It.’ That was awesome.


George Maple recently completed a series of performances at Austin’s SXSW festival. She is currently finishing up her US run with a few shows in New York alongside Broods and Tkay Maidza.

You can follow her journey here:

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