Ahead of the band’s final tour ever*, we had a chat with founding member of Bluejuice Jake Stone about the history of Bluejuice, the future of Bluejuice’s members and the songs of Bluejuice. A must read for Bluejuice fans.
Today’s illustration (which we believe it Jake and Stav) is from the talented Queensland based street artist who goes by the name Barek. Specialising in combining unique caricatures and the suburban environment (and pimping out portaloos), be sure to check out his awesome catalogue on Facebook and Tumblr.
HAPPY: You’ve got the big ‘Retrospectable Tour’ kicking off pretty soon, how are you feeling about it?
JAKE STONE: Well the feelings are… hang on let me take off my jumper. (rustling sounds as he takes off his jumper). Well now the feelings are less jumper, more sort of calm, relaxed, less warm, freer, happier. I don’t know, it’s hard to say man. What can I say? I’ve been in the band for thirteen years, I probably don’t even know how I feel really. But I’m sad about it because I don’t really want to stop playing in the band. But at the same time lots of things come to an end. We’ve done it for a long time.
Probably for this particular band you couldn’t do for the rest of your life if nobody in the audience really cares. There are periods of time when people really do care and there will be periods of time when they won’t care for a while. So, we can either stick around and put out records and have a smaller amount of people be into the band, scale down the gigs until we’re sort of in fashion again. Or we could break up and have all the people who liked the band, who are essentially our broader audience, actually come to the shows and wave the band off and be into it, we’ll put out a good couple of songs and have them on the radio. All the kind of things we used to do. That’s the idea, which actually is not unromantic.
HAPPY: I guess it’s kind of romantic in a way, you get to spend time with people who’ll miss you the most.
JAKE STONE: Yeah. I think at the moment it’s hard to maintain that early 20’s or whatever audience triple J give you it you aren’t always in that age group as well.
HAPPY: As this is a special send off with your closest fans, do you have anything special planned for the tour?
JAKE STONE: We’re just gonna play, and if we had anything special it’d be a bit of letdown to talk about it here, but we’re being supported by bands who have supported the band in the past who have all gone on to bigger and better things, or new bands we find exciting. There are bands like Safia and Art vs Science, those kind of people which are a mixture of bands between young, triple J bands and older bands who’ve already done big things. And we’re not telling anyone who’s on which day, so if you come along to the show the support could be a band that is bigger than us – a veteran act, or a new act you’ve heard on triple J. So that’s gonna be the exciting bit, not really knowing who’s gonna be out to support. And then we’re gonna do a classic Bluejuice show with songs we thought you’d wanna hear. I think It’ll be what people want.
HAPPY: After thirteen years as a band what are you going to miss about Bluejuice?
JAKE STONE: Most of my life I guess – a major thing you’d miss, being in a band you’ve been playing in for thirteen years. There’s too many things to miss specifically. I think the relationships would exist anyway, but I’ll miss working with those people. The short-hand environment – the way that we write is very quick because we’ve known each other for such a long time we had the ability to write fast. Yeah, I don’t know man, it’s not easy for me to sum up thirteen years of work into just one thing that I’d miss, how could I do that?
HAPPY: Do you feel that you achieved everything you hoped for when you first started the band?
JAKE STONE: Oh yeah man! We put out so many radio singles – when we started the band we definitely wanted to do that, and we had an idea that we would be able to do that. But we had no idea that we’d end up playing four Splendours, three Big Day Outs and, what else is there? The National Scouts Jamboree and all these weird shows. Putting out eight radio singles, that kind of stuff happens incrementally. We definitely did plan on trying to do those things, because if you don’t plan on them they won’t happen. We planned, then one occurred and then we moved on to the next. So it was a series of small goals rather than just one over-reaching thing you’ve envisioned from the start, because that’s not how life is. You can’t just imagine how something will happen and then have it happen exactly how you imagined it. I doubt anyone starts a band saying that they’re definitely going to be a nationally successful band.
But I do remember on the first day we rehearsed thinking “I’m not sure if this is good or not, but I definitely think at some point other people might like us. This could be a relatively commercial success, even though it sounds mental at the moment”. That was the very first day of rehearsal, and we weren’t very polished at that point, but I had that thought that – nationally it could potentially work. When I got Vitriol back once it had been mixed you were like “Well this has something this song and it will probably get slammed on the radio. And just things like that, when we were writing Broken Leg once it sort of came to me I thought “That’s going to be a big radio song”, and it was the same for Act Yr Age, I was sure it would be a big single. I’ll Go Crazy, after we mixed it I remember thinking “Okay, we got something, this will work”. So it’s just little goals.
HAPPY: After the tour is over do you want to continue doing music or do you want to do something else?
JAKE STONE: I’ll just keep doing music, but I’ll work in other areas. I’m having an article published in the Sydney Morning Herald on Saturday so I’m keeping up with my journalism stuff and continuing to write. I’ll write for other people as well. I’ve been a music journalist for the best part of fifteen years and I’ll continue to do that kind of work as well**.
Catch Bluejuice one last time at the following shows on their Retrospectable tour (sold out dates not shown below):
2nd Oct | The Hi-Fi, Brisbane (18+)
3rd Oct | Coolangatta Hotel (18+)
4th Oct | Great Northern, Byron Bay (18+)
8th Oct | Federation University, Gippsland (18+)
9th Oct | Hi Fi, Melbourne (18+)
11th Oct | (afternoon) Hi Fi, Melbourne (All Ages)
11th Oct | (evening) Village Green Hotel (18+)
12th Oct | Barwon Club, Geelong (18+)
17th Oct | Waves, Wollongong (18+)
18th Oct | ANU Bar, Canberra (18+)
23rd Oct | Bar On The Hill, Newcastle (18+)
26th Oct | Metro Theatre, Sydney (All Ages)
6th Sept | Movidas, Mackay (18+)
7th Sept | The Venue, Townsville (18+)
8th Sept | The Jack, Cairns (18+)
**Yes Jake contributes to Happy on occasion.
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