Byron Bay Guitar Festival | Byron Brewery | 6–7 October
British India emerged from the Melbourne underground 11 years ago and went on to become one of Australia’s most successful independent rock acts. With four Top 10 albums to their credit the band shows no sign of slowing down. Bass player for the band, Will Drummond, spoke with The Echo ahead of their performance this weekend at the Byron Bay Guitar Festival.
Great name for a band. Where did it come from?
Unfortunately there was no great epiphany or someone appearing on a ‘flaming pie’ in a dream à la The Beatles. As 15–16-year-olds we saw the name of a clothing store in Singapore and were at the same time devouring The Beatles’ Anthologies and must have been up to the episode where they spent a long time in India.
This tour is like a final farewell party for Nic Wilson, your lead guitarist. Is it sad for you guys to have him leave?
It’s extremely sad that Nic is leaving. He has been a great barometer in so many ways for the band, whether that was in the songwriting realm or coming to the man for stressful business decisions we have had to make. Nic exists on his own plane and has never been one to follow a trend, so his ideas have always come from a pure well. Nic is retiring from touring AND music so he won’t be a part of another album. What’s next? We don’t know. As I have said to a lot of people, the bomb has just gone off and we have to see where the dust settles. We have spent half of our life making music and touring, so our next move is one that we need to consider carefully and be respectful to what we have achieved and what we still want to achieve.
What can your fans at the Byron Bay Guitar Festival expect from your show?
Because we are sending Nic off we will be playing a large retrospective of our career. It will be sad but we have to enjoy every last gig with him and we have always loved playing festivals together.
Other than the release of the album you’re working on, is there anything else on the horizon for British India?
Our main focus at the moment is giving Nic the proper farewell. This band means a lot to the many fans who have come to our shows every year and we want to put on a great show for them with Nic still on the stage. Other than that we are just writing and assessing what the future will hold.
British India headline the Byron Bay Guitar Festival at the Byron Brewery this Saturday and Sunday. With 25 performances, five specialty workshops, and even a guitar retail section! $50 day pass or $90 for both days.
Tix at byronbayguitarfestival.com