Something good will come our way by Madelaine Empson
New Zealand music icon Bic Runga will perform six special concerts across the North Island this spring, road testing new material at San Fran on the 6th of November with support from Ebony Lamb. The internationally heralded pop songstress, who holds the most Tui Awards of any individual ever, will celebrate both the warming of the weather and the freedom to tour again after COVID-19 brought live performance to a halt.
As for what the Sway singer got up to during lockdown? Not only did she juggle homeschooling with various musical projects – like releasing the debut single Let’s Just Stay in Bed with her new collaboration King Sweeties, nominated for the 2020 APRA Silver Scroll Award – she also mastered the art of the slow-rise boule!
How did you experience lockdown on a personal and artistic level?
I got really miserable in lockdown, but it made me turn to music in a big way. I got really stuck into all of my music projects and my musical friends kept me happy. We’re lucky we could still work remotely on recordings, so I got a lot of new music done.
You’re working on a new record to be released mid-2021. What stage of the creative process are you in?
I’ve been learning to engineer my own music so that’s the thing that’s keeping me interested, just the learning of new things. And there’s lots to write about now, I’m finding songwriting really fun again.
Looking back over your discography, from the first album Drive in 1997 to the latest, how would you describe your musical evolution?
I always set out to make records that sounded timeless, so my early music still sounds okay to me, as a section of my life. But now, everything is different and I still don’t feel satisfied that I’ve done my best work yet. I want to have another run of music making as an entirely different person! As an old lady in fact! I’m excited to make music in my fifties and sixties. I think your forties are dreadfully in between.
What have been some of the highlights of your exceptional music career so far and what is still left on your bucket list?
I’ve met almost all of my musical heroes, I’m happy with where my music took me in that respect. Jimmy Page came to some of my London shows, Elton John, I worked on 7 Worlds Collide with the Finns, Radiohead, Wilco... All of it was like a dream. But now I’m finding more satisfaction from helping other people who are much younger than me. It’s nice to encourage other people, and it keeps me in touch with what’s new.
What are you most looking forward to about performing at San Fran this November?
I’ve always wanted to do a show at San Fran! I’ve played there with my band Opossom, it’s just a great club venue, it goes off!