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:: Spotlight :: Interview with Victoria Baillie

By: Carmine Pascuzzi

One of the talented young singer-songwriters around the Australian country music scene is Victoria Baillie. She has a gorgeous debut album ‘Start Brand New’, which is released through Shock Records and is one of the young, rising stars who has the ability to make a mark in an exciting way. I recently had a chat to Victoria about her development and this new album.

Q. Tell us about yourself, in the sense of your musical upbrining?

A. My music started at an early age through dancing. My older sister had a ballet school and she taught me about ballet and jazz dancing. That led to dancing and singing on stage before getting purely into singing with a vocals coach. She was a country music singer. I liked country music but wasn’t its biggest fan by any means. It really grew on me as I discovered more artists.

Q. Where did you grow up?

A. I grew up in Moe, Victoria (Mum and Dad are still there) and, for the last four years, I have lived in the Central Coast of NSW.

Q. Was country music always the style that suited your musical development?

A. My vocals coach encouraged me to enter talent quests at a young age. Mum and Dad packed the car and we would head around Victoria, NSW and Queensland doing country music talent quests. I did heaps of them for several years. I love performing, so one thing led to another.

Q. Tell us how have developed in the last few years?

A. I recorded an EP in NSW in 2006. I got offered a few support gigs and started to develop my performance. Now, I have got to the stage of releasing an album. That was a harder process. I co-wrote much on the album, along with a range of people including Felicity Urquhart, Drew McAllister and others. It’s good to bounce ideas off one another. I enjoy it very much. You do have those dead spots when nothing productive happens but there are other times when everything clicks. For example, I wrote a song with Amber Lawrence in one hour.

Q. Was it a hands-on process as far as making the album?

A. I did get involved a little in the production. Obviously, I didn’t play any instruments on the album, but I wanted to see how my vocals worked.

Q. You seem versatile enough to cover various styles within the country-pop genre…

A. A lot of people get the wrong idea on how country music should sound. Yet, there are so many different styles – contemporary, country rock, country ballad, etc. You can’t out it in a box anymore.

Q. The single ‘Melt’ has done well for you - gathering good airplay…

A. A lot of people like the song ‘Melt’. It’s been great to get the positive feedback. I was totally pleased with the song’s success and that it got to the Top 5 in the Country Music Channel. It’s mind-boggling really.

Q. Who has helped you most in your career to date?

A. So many people have been greatly supportive. Most helpful who have never doubted me are obviously my parents, my sister and my boyfriend.

Q. Do you have any particular musical influences?

A. I love Shania Twain. I looked up to her. But there are so many, especially here in Australia like Felicity Urquhart, The Flood, and a whole bunch of American performers like Patti Loveless and Dolly Parton. You should see my CD collection – there are heaps of artists I admire. Even The Eagles are a band I really like. They’re country rock. I also like Bon Jovi and Michael Buble. Different styles influence me too.

Q. Do you have a certain fashion sense?

A. I know what I like when it comes to fashion and what I’m comfortable in. I love to get made up but I’m also down to earth. When it comes to performing I like to put on a good show in my best clothes.

Q. Any designers that you like specifically?

A. I’m a big Alannah Hill fan. I also like Kate Hurst. I love funky, retro stuff. Vintage boots would be great. I just love to shop.

Q. How important is the Internet in reaching a big market?

A. It’s such an important tool these days. Technology has controlled our lives over the last ten years. I do a lot of my own business on the computer. I love looking up other artists on Myspace.

Q. What are the plans for the rest of 2009?

A. I just hope to get out there and perform as much as possible. I’d love to do festivals like Gympie, Deniliquin, etc. We’re also working on some city shows this year too.

'Start Brand New' is out through Shock Records.

See Victoria on the following dates:

MAY 2009
2nd – Katherine Country Music Muster, NT
3rd – Katherine Country Music Muster, NT
21st - Wyong RSL, 7.00pm - 10:30pm
22nd - Antill Park Golf Club Picton, NSW, 7.00pm -10.00pm
23rd - Cessnock CM Festival NSW, 2:30-3:20pm
28th - Rooty Hill RSL

JULY 2009
4th - Sutherland United Services Club, 8.00pm-11:30pm
5th - Royal Cricketers Arms, Prospect NSW 12:30pm-3:30pm

25th - Mildura Country Music Festival
26th - Mildura Country Music Festival
27th - Mildura Country Music Festival
28th - Mildura Country Music Festival
29th - Mildura Country Music Festival
30th - Mildura Country Music Festival

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