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:: Spotlight :: Slinkee Minx - Sexy, Sophisticated Dance

By: Carmine Pascuzzi

Pictures right:
In-store performance at HMS store in Melbourne

Australia’s latest all-girl group brings a classy sophistication to the music scene. It’s very pleasing to write an article about Melbourne group Slinkee Minx. Michelle Palmer, Annemarie Failla, and Belinda Tartaglia are three talented young women who have began a musical career that I hope continues long into the future. The girls have worked very hard to get to first base with the release of their first single “Summer Rain”, a new version of the popular Belinda Carlisle song of 1989. They have worked hard with their songwriting over the past two years and this will become evident when the next single and subsequent album is released in the months to come.

This is a good first step, however, in getting their name out there through much self-promotion and with support from Central Station Records. The song has just entered the ARIA national singles chart at No.4 first week in and they are already very popular through the Mediasearch website because we were one of the first outlets to see the potential they offer.

I had a chat to Michelle and Belinda about the group’s background and their objectives.

Q. When did you start singing and how long have you known each other?

A.(Michelle)We all started singing from a very young age. Along the way, came dancing, modelling and acting, and we’ve been doing this all our lives. I met Belinda five years ago. Annemarie and Belinda have known each all their lives. We formed Slinkee Minx about four years ago. We’ve been working very hard on trying to get a record deal.

Q.What did you grow up listening to, and has it affected your output?

A.(Michelle)We all love Madonna, Kylie Minogue, George Michael, and Stevie Wonder. More recently, we’ve got into artists like Jamiroquai and Moloko. They are our main influences, but there is a lot of range to our repertoire. We’ve been getting into different styles. Evanescence is a recent act who are pretty interesting.

(Belinda)It’s great that Australia is producing some really good talent with many styles of a high calibre. We see our market as being international.

Q. Was it always the idea to do a cover?

A.(Belinda)Initially, when we first met, we started doing cover songs at rehearsals. Then we got bored and we concentrated on writing songs for the past two years.

(Michelle)There had been so much feedback from different people who were suggesting we do a cover. We were against it. Then we decided we should. Many covers had been released at this time.

(Belinda)It was then important to decide which one. ‘Summer Rain’ had never been covered and it’s a favourite song of ours. Young people, who hadn’t heard it in 1989, have been getting into it. It’s a song that appeals to all ages.

(Michelle)It was added to radio off the demo copy we sent out to the radio stations. It’s been very exciting and we’re looking forward to how it charts.

Q. Has this song come at a good time?

A.(Belinda)Yes, it has worked well. Originally, we thought we’d delay it until summer, but everyone seemed to like it when we started testing the market recently.

(Michelle) The timing is great. There aren’t a lot of female groups out there; certainly no notable ones in Australia, especially in the dance genre.

Q. Tell us about the remixes?

A.(Michelle)Zander is a relatively fresh name on the scene. We were told they were going to have a go at it. As soon as we heard it, we couldn’t have been more thrilled. They’ve done a fantastic job and it’s something a bit different. The club mix is something sure to take off on the dancefloors. The KCB mix is a little harder sounding.

Q.I notice the clothing on the CD cover is by Zayt…

A.(Belinda)Yes, I know one of the girls from there and we approached them and asked whether they can provide clothes for us. It worked out well because we really love their style. We’ll be appearing at their new shop launch at the GPO soon.

Q.Tell us about Blue Planet Productions, who have been instrumental in your development?

A.(Michelle)They have been around for some time, having worked with Vanessa Amorosi, Joanne, and many others. We met them through a friend and the synergy amongst us was fantastic. They know where we want to go with our music. They identified with us and it’s been a great match.

Q.The other B-side “Tell Me” is very funky and upbeat. Is that indicative of what we’ll hear on the album?

A.(Belinda)Yes, it’s typical of the sound you’ll expect; probably classed in the dance genre. We don’t want to pigeonhole ourselves. We have an eclectic sound – a bit of everything, eg dance songs that feature jazz/funk elements. It is also indicative of our background – trained in various areas of singing. There is definitely a European flavour too.

Q.Have you chosen somebody to produce the album?

A.(Michelle)We’re still talking to various people. One producer could make the songs too similar after a while. We want to place an individual stamp on each song. We’re certainly hoping to forge good relationships with the people we want to work with us.

Q.Michelle, tell us about your role in the motivational seminars that you’ve established for young women?

A.(Michelle)It was my idea to do the “Create Your Own Destiny” seminars. I spoke to Annemarie about it. Together we had this thought to give some talks to women. Then we involved Belinda to talk on fashion – eg. putting together a wardrobe without much money. Also, self-esteem, relationships with parents, etc. All those everyday issues. They were free seminars and hopefully we can do more in the future.

“Summer Rain” is out now through Central Station Records/MRA

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