EAST COAST FACES - ocean alley
Groovin’ the Moo hits town this weekend and we chatted with Mitch Galbraith, one of the members of Ocean Alley, a cruisey bunch of mates who have a great time together and also happen to make awesome music… (we’re not so sure about question 10, we just hope Mitch means Tom’s a real nightowl…!)
EC. The band is based in Sydney’s northern beaches, but how and when did you originally get together?
MG. We were just mates living in the same town surfing and hanging out together and decided to start playing music together around 2009. After a year of mucking around playing covers of our favourite tunes we became very passionate about writing our own music. The early days were a bit of a shambles but it turned out alright.
EC. Growing up, what kind of music was played at home, and were your musical tastes most influenced by parents, siblings, or mates?
MG. We all have varying tastes in music but one commonality is that our tastes were pretty heavily influenced by each of our parents’ music.
Nic and Tom grew up on classic rock music like the Stones and a little Sabbath.
Angus' guitar playing is heavily influenced by the blues guitar legends such as Clapton and Hendrix. Baden first started playing guitar singing more roots and R&B style songs when he was in high school. Lach and Mitch have influenced from their parents of the likes of Queen and The Bee Gees.
EC Pre-Ocean Alley, which particular band or artist was each member most into?
MG Again we all have differing tastes in music now like we did growing up but we probably listened to the usual growing up in high school.
You know everyone is listening to the same thing when you’re grommets and haven't got the life experience to want to develop your own tastes for the arts. Obviously we get along pretty well with each other and I think the fact we appreciate each other's likes and dislikes is why this is so.
EC What was the very first album each of you remembers buying?
MG. Well it's a bit of speculation here but we're guessing along the lines of Linkin Park, Eminem and Korn. Mid 2000's shit that we hate listening to now.
EC. Who does what in your songwriting process?
MG. We all have equal input for song writing and mostly write our own parts.
Once someone brings an idea to the table we work on it in a group session and see what we can collectively come up with. It's exciting to write your own part and makes everyone song feel personal to everyone in the band. Very democratic stuff you know.
EC. Which band or artist to date has been the most fun to tour with?
MG. Skeggs on the Groovin the Moo tour has been fun. The boys can mix ya up a mean champagne and Berroca to get you kicking and screaming in the morning.
EC. Internationally, which country you toured was the most surreal or unique?
MG. Chamonix was an amazing experience playing up a mountain opposite Mt Blanc. We had to lug all of our equipment up in the gondolas but the view from the top was incredible.
It was very surreal backdrop indeed.
EC. Which country had the most awesome and/or surprising audience response?
MG. We had great support from the Netherlands when we played in Amsterdam and at a few other festivals in Holland. We love the Dutch people and what they’re all about; love, peace and a good time.
EC. After music, what is each band members’ secret skill, hobby or interest?
MG. Tom is a keen fisherman. He caught a couple Kingfish the other day and brought them home for dinner.
Angus loves a sneaky cold one at the Bowlo on a Wednesday arvo. A simple man with simple needs I guess.
Lach is an aspiring actor and one day you might see him on the big screen.
Nic is a passionate and enthusiastic carpenter who heads down to the job site whenever he gets a spare minute. He can't keep his hands off that damn hammer.
Baden's secret passion is cooking for the boys. After a long Saturday night you'll definitely be able to find him cooking in the kitchen and always gets a wide eyed reception when he brings out the dinner plates full of tasty treats.
Myself, I enjoying sailing on my timber boat near home. We all enjoy heading out for a day on the water swimming, drinking and pretending we are pirates.
EC. Out of all of you, who has the best party trick and if so, what is it? (!)
MG. Tom’s party trick is by far the most impressive and I'd give anyone a lot of money if they can stay up as long as he can.