Byron outfit Potato Potato have garnered attention from the music industry with effortless humility. They may be high school students but that hasn’t stopped them being chosen to play Woodford Folk Festival, Splendour in the Grass and Byron Blues Festival. Uncovered at Mullum Music Festival back in 2011 as part of the youth mentorship, this impressive folk-pop coming together is only just beginning to gather momentum. With their self-titled debut EP out just last week, this is one Potato that won’t be peeled.
Yes and no. I definitely think that being sixteen influences the sound of our music and our songwriting, but we are also still exposed to a large variety of music. I feel like our music is a combination of a lot of types of sounds, and I think that, being our age, we are susceptible to all different kinds of music
How did it get started for you? What were the pivotal events that set Potato Potato on the roll?
Luck brought us together. And Facebook. The boys saw Merryn play at Blues and when they realised who she was, Patrick facebooked her and organised a jam… Kind of all just fell into place from there. Mullum Music Festival mentorship was and still is a highlight. We were mentored by the incredible Melbourne band called Husky and ended up playing a small, intimate gig with them in Byron. That was our first impressive gig and I guess from there we started to attract the people’s ears.
What do you think sets Potato Potato apart from other folk-pop bands out there?
I think our voices are all miraculously similarly sounding (besides the fact Merryn is a girl). When we all sing together, it creates a nice, warm blanket of sound over the instruments, which is something most people like to be rugged up in.
What is the kind of music you want to be making? What about what you don’t want?
We want to be making music that is easy to listen to and sing along with. Music that captures people and sparks an emotional response. If we move people in any sort of way, we’ve done our job.
We don’t want to be pop stars. Just travellers who share their music with others.
Tell me about recording the EP. What did you set out to achieve? How close did you come? Did things change in the studio?
Well, we were a couple of months late with recording the EP, but when we finally did, it was a really beautiful and fun experience. It was rainy up in the dairy but it created a comforting warmth in the room. We wanted to achieve a really authentic, raw sound and I think we feel pretty content with the result.
All we want to do is play music. Whatever that means, we want to be doing it. We have been blessed and most things have been offered to us. Recently, we have teamed up with Vitamin Records, which means extra support and help with getting our tunes out there! Playing at Splendour was incredible. It shows how great things like Triple J are. They really do give young musicians a chance to share their gifts.
What are the future plans for Potato Potato?
The future plans of Taters… To hopefully go on a mini-tour end of this year. Record another album next year, finish school and travel the world with a guitar in hand.
What should we expect for your EP launch at Ewingsdale hall on Friday?
The EP launch is going to be beautiful. We have invited local musicians Tora and Kyle Lionhart to fill the space from 6.30pm. There will be homemade soup for dinner, and tea and coffee to warm the bellies. We are hoping to create a nostalgic theme throughout, to go with the coincidental theme of the EP. The plan is to make it one, big loungeroom. We can’t wait.
Ewingsdale Hall on Friday at 6pm with support by Kyle Lionhart and Tora. $10/15 with EP at the door.
Find out more about Potato Potato.
Find this and many other great gigs in Echonetdaily’s North Coast Gig Guide.