How did it feel to hear your song played all over the airwaves? It's always amazing to find out about our music being used through radio because it's such a powerful medium for reaching listeners ears. If you believe in your music, and what it stands for, then you really want it to get out to people. Radio is exciting because it's such a great way to introduce people to what we do.
Did you have any pre-conceived ideas about the music industry? I suppose we all have an image in mind when we think of the music industry. It's sold to us as a glamorous world, full of fame and money. When the reality is that it's a world that demands incredibly hard work, perseverance, but comes with no guarantees. With so few people actually achieving the 'fame and money' side to the industry, you are constantly challenged by what is really success. If it's about making music that speaks to people, and music that you can enjoy playing and sharing with others, then you have already 'made it'! Fame, money, and all that goes with it is a smoke screen that motivates deception, and self seeking behavior. It is the dark-side of the music industry, that is constantly at war with art.
Do you write your own songs? What's your inspiration? Our material is a mixture of original tracks that we have written, as well as well known traditional pieces that we have re-arranged in a completely new style, combining a vast array of interesting instruments from around the world. We have released two completely original albums, and two more recent releases combining originals with traditional worship or christmas tunes. The inspiration to our music usually centers around a spiritual focus. By playing completely instrumental music, it takes away the listeners ability put the compositions in a box by lyrical content, and allows the music to really speak to wherever a person is at. A song can be inspired by anything around us, but the special thing that occurs when humans are creative is a gift from God. We hope that listeners to our music are taken to a place where they can they can be open to receiving spiritually, or even just simply enjoying listening and chilling out.
What music/artists do you listen to when you are not playing your own? As a band we enjoy a wide range of music, from Carl Cox to Blind Willie Johnson, Jeff Buckley to Moby, and especially traditional world music. We managed to pick up heaps of great CD's in India on our last trip, and we get all inspired by these authentic sounds, instruments, and rhythms.
What's next? Tour/Album/Single? Well, we've been blessed with a really busy year that has seen us do a lot of travel, performing in India, Canada, the US, and Australia, and right now we are all looking really forward to a Christmas break! We are currently busy promoting our latest release, the 'Christmas' album, and working towards 2004 - applying for festivals, negotiating with the Record Label for what project we write and record next.
Was there a moment you contemplated throwing in the towel? It wouldn't be rewarding if there wasn't struggles, setbacks, hardships, and disagreements. It's all part of life, but how we deal with it is what really reveals our true character. I can't actually pin point a moment in particular when I wanted to throw in the towel, but each time something difficult comes up we all have a decision to make. Do we make it bigger than it is, or do we get over it, keeping the main goal in sight.
Do you prefer performing live or recording? There's so much I love about both processes. Playing live is exciting, it constantly changes, it's very rewarding, and involves heaps of interaction with people. Recording in the studio can be extremely creative, satisfying, and also exciting. If you have enough time in the studio, you can really enjoy the process of coming up with something that you've created from scratch that eventually becomes 'immortalized' into a disc.
What/who was your inspiration to go into the music industry? For me personally it was my Dad and my family. My parents originally encouraged me to learn an instrument way back in primary school, and then were the ones who dedicated themselves to driving me and my drums to all my gigs. Still today they are extremely supportive of my love for music, which has now been my full time job for the past two years.
What is the biggest challenge you have faced along the way to your musical success? Being away from home is always a challenge. Most of our tours go for 2 months or more, and in that time you can go through a lot of challenges. Although it is actually really healthy go get away from home for a while, because it gives you a new perspective, but also make you love home even more.
What's a typical day like? Rivertribe has about 4 to 5 days a week that involve performing, whether we are home or on the road. A typical day involves either playing a gig, or catching up on all the stuff you don't do when performing - emails, washing, catching up with loved ones etc. Oh, and when we're on tour....lots, and lots, of driving!
What has been your favorite part of becoming a music artist? The great combination of music and people. I've always absolutely loved playing, creating, and listening to music, but it gets even better when you combine others. Jamming, having a great audience, meeting and chatting to people, music allows such a powerful connection to people - I love it.
If you could collaborate with another artist, who would it be? Sting. He's an inspiration. Someone who approaches life and music with integrity, and combines it with immense talent. He is a person who understand the beauty of collaboration, and what magic can come out of individually unique people combining on a musical project.
Are you single? What do you look for in a partner? Yes, I'm single. I think it's hard to put down a particular type of person, or silly to make a mental list of qualities because I think when love hits, it throws away any preconceived ideas of type. Everyone is different and has gifts and talents that make them special. Once you get past the physical, I suppose it's very important that they are heading in a similar life direction to me. I'm not into cheap flings, it's nothing or the long haul.
Do you have a website fans can visit? www.rivertribe.com You can listen to us, see some photos, read about what we've been up to, buy our music, keep up with the regular updates, and send us an email.
Can you tell us 5 things required for a happy healthy & enjoyable life? 1. (very important!) Love others and love yourself. 2. You are unique. Be content with just who you are, no more no less, that's when you'll find yourselves proud owners of everything that can't be bought. 3. Live by the principal: 'That everything always works out'. You are never dealt a hand in life that you aren't given the ability to work with. 4. Don't forget to have FUN! 5. and Smile lots.
What message would you like to say to your fans? Just simply, that we hope our music is a blessing to you.
60 Second Quiz
Full Name: Jonathan Mark Callow
Star Sign: I actually don't know! I can't be bothered with all that stuff.
Favorite Food: I like it all!
Favorite Film: I am Sam
Favorite Actor: Mike Myers
Pet: They all died (it's sad, but true)
Describe yourself in 3 words: Crazy, Content, Considerate.
Best Feature: I can hum and whistle at the same time!
Worst Feature: My XF Falcon with a plastic bull-bar - 'Bertha'.
Person You Would Most Like to Meet: Jesus
Hobbies/Interests: Obviously music (well, dah).
First Job: Musician
Are you a Pub, Bar or Club kind: Pub
What Can You Never Leave Home Without: My Palm Pilot
What is the first thing you think of when you wake up in the morning: Usually it's a battle between trying to get a positive outlook on what the day may bring, and wanting to destroy my alarm and sleep forever in my lovely doona away from the worries of the world.