banner image

:: Spotlight :: Interview with Mindi Jackson of Rogue Traders

By: Carmine Pascuzzi

With the World Cup just around the corner, Australian band Rogue Traders have come up with an ingenious 3-D video that is sure to give the Socceroos that extra support. Read more here

A little while ago, I had the pleasure of interviewing the band's stunning lead singer Mindi Jackson about the band's activities this year and the great expectations ahead.

Q. Your discovery was made through MySpace - it obviously says something for its impact. What are your thoughts?

A. Myspace certainly made a massive impact when it came onto the scene. For artists it’s a great way to put your music out there. Lots of people can access it and see what you do. You can put up your gigs, artwork and pictures and at the click of a button people can see it all and get a sense of who you are as an artist. Most bands and artists out there have a Myspace page so it’s clear that it’s impact is far reaching. I’ve used Myspace a lot over the years and found it really useful. On the other hand, there are so many people out there doing the same thing that you can get a little lost as well. It took James (Ash) a very long time of searching through Myspace pages before he found mine. Lucky he eventually did!

Q. What was it like playing at the 2010 Australian Open tennis?

A. It was absolutely fantastic. Such an honour to be playing before the Men’s Final. For me it was a really special moment, because the year before I was visiting Melbourne to watch the Australian Open and it was on that very trip that I organised to do my Rogue Traders audition. It was such an exciting time. I remember watching the bands at the Open and thinking that this time next year I wanted to be fronting the Rogue Traders and playing here. Being there this year really felt like I’d come full circle. Such a cool feeling.

Q. How exciting has the venture been for you - the making of the album in particular?

A. This has definitely been the most exciting time of my career to date. I moved from Sydney to Melbourne in April 2009 and embarked on this adventure with the Rogue Traders. Having the privilege of recording an album with James, his wife Melinda and the Rogue Traders crew has been amazing. They are such talented people and have come to be some of my closest friends. I get to write music, record and perform with great people and there’s nothing I’d rather be doing. It’s a very exciting time. In the studio the other day we opened up a song and saw that one of the vocal parts had been recorded when I auditioned in January 2009. Seeing the album come together from my first visit to the studio then, into the body of work it is now is such a buzz. This album really tells the story of the next phase of the Rogue Traders. We’ve poured everything into it.

Q. Has it been everything that you expected?

A. It has been that and more. Having the opportunity to write, record and perform music is something you can never take for granted. It’s something that I appreciate everyday. Hearing your music on the radio, seeing it on the television, performing to big crowds of people, these are all experiences that continue to blow my mind.

Q. You'd worked in other bands previously. Is it a better arrangement for you than being a solo performer?

A. Most definitely. It’s who I am and where I feel I belong. I’m a person that thrives on collaborating, creating and working with people who love what I love. There is a really special energy that comes from being in a band, there’s nothing quite like it.

Q. What qualities do you bring to the band?

A. I bring my own energy and who I am as an artist. I believe it’s really important to just be yourself, so what you see is what you get. I love performing live, it’s where I feel most at home and I am definitely a product of my own personal experiences and influences. I grew up listening to my Mum’s 80’s pop and my Dad’s rock records and I think that comes across in a lot of what I do today. I love experimenting both with music and fashion and I really enjoy being adventurous and trying new things. I’m a strong believer in taking risks.

Q. Image and style will obviously come into play with your attractiveness, which will complement your powerful voice. How important is fashion to you, and what particular likes do you have (on-stage and off-stage)?

A. I love fashion. For me fashion is another way of expressing yourself, another creative outlet. One of my favourite things to do is to take vintage pieces and meld them together with more contemporary fashion. I enjoy taking risks, sometimes it comes off, sometimes it doesn’t, but you have to try in order to find something new and exciting. Both on and off stage I like to experiment. On stage I’m really enjoying metallics, bold colours, a defined shoulder, heavy accessories, and a strong heel. For everyday wear I think it’s great to have some good versatile basics. Things like leggings, a great pair of jeans, bodysuits and a good jacket. Then you can make the outfit with more adventurous accessories. Some of my favourite fashion is by Justine Davis, Balmain, By Weave, Balenciaga, Romance Was Born and Ellery.

One of the highlights for you so far must gave been the making of the video for ‘Love Is A War’? It was quite impacting.[b]

A. That was such a fun day! Such a great bunch of people and it was one of those days that we’ll all remember forever. Basically the clip is a fun battle of the sexes…males and females from all walks of life, in a full blown dessert fight. We filmed it on an indoor netball court, we had the band set up, two tables of desserts and some feisty people ready for action! I couldn’t wait to see the food start flying and when it did there was no turning back. It was messy, slippery, smelly and very very funny! Filming the very last shot of me throwing a pie at James, I launched forward and my feet flew out from under me and I landed square on my backside. It hurt, but looking back it was hilarious. James took a nice big stack too. We really felt it the next day!

Q. You must be looking forward to playing live shows later this year upon the album release…

A. Yes we are all very much looking forward to performing live. We’ve spent a lot of time in the studio over the past twelve months and now with the album recorded we’re bursting to get out and play some shows. We’re looking so forward to sinking our teeth into the new material and revisiting the previous hits. It’s going to be a great time and we can’t wait!

'Would You Raise Your Hands‘ is their latest single, out now through Sony Music. The new album 'Night of the Living Drums’ is to be released on June 25.

Beat As One’ is the official anthem for the Socceroos. You can buy it through the Rogue Traders website