1. You have been recognised as one of the most prominent voices in the Australian music scene. How did you get you started in your career?
You know those kids who record their voice and then make radio shows? Normally you grow out of it, but I was a music obsessed dork who never did! After I finished high school, I studied Media & Communications at Sydney University. And while I was doing that I started volunteering at community radio as well as DJing. Community radio was really the key to discovering how much I enjoyed presenting and interviewing.
2. You may be a musical juggernaut – you’re a radio announcer for Triple J, TV presenter on ABCTV, musician as well as a DJ and you co-host a podcast with Dr. Karl. What has been the highlight of your career thus far?
Not sure where to start, honestly! Presenting a TV show like The Set has been a dream. Growing up and watching live music TV, I idolised hosts that could juggle between smooth professionalism and infectious chaos on screen. I’ve also loved being able to connect with artists and listeners, because radio is such a personal medium. You can have real connections that technically exist in a public sphere, but are actually very intimate and genuinely deep.
3. In your extensive career, you have interviewed the likes of Marilyn Manson, The Strokes, Wu Tang Clan, Sonic Youth and plenty more. What has been your favourite interview so far and why?
TOO HARD A QUESTION!
4. Before she takes the stage, Rihanna, her musicians and backup dancers gather together, place their hands in the middle and raise them as they let out a rallying cry. Do you and any of your colleagues have a similar ritual or calming remedy before you present or interview?
I turn down the lights in the studio, and I always do a bunch of deep stretches & dance moves to get my blood pumping and brain in the zone. Flexibility, focus and then I fucking nail it!
5. Any tips for your young listeners or music lovers who want to get started in the music business?
There are so many roles in the music business, it depends on what you want to do! Figure out what your passion is within the industry and start getting involved. It takes all different types of people to be presenters, producers, music managers, run labels, etc. Hone in on your skills, work hard and be nice to everyone in the room, not just the artists or people you think are “important”. PEACE!
6. You are seen as a role model for thousands of young girls as you continue your push for gender equality and equal opportunities within the music industry. In your experience of more than ten years of working in the industry, how has the music landscape changed in terms of diversity?
I believe awareness has a lot to do with change. As more people in a position of power champion diversity, the educated audience becomes increasingly aware of the dynamics that require change. There is still a long way to go in terms of getting that balance right, but things are slowly and surely shifting forward towards equality. As someone with the ability to affect the climate, I’m hyper aware of the artists I’m championing, content we publish, and callers on air.
7. REM stands for Rapid Eye Movement – the period when you’re asleep and dreams are created. Tell us the funniest or craziest dream you had while in REM.
Honestly, I mainly have lucid dreams where I’m either flying over utopian cities or I’m having sex. How cute is that. It’s a cheeky win win situation really haha!
8. Here at Project REM, we’re dedicated to helping disadvantaged and underprivileged women by providing a sanitary pack for each pyjama set sold. Recently, Australia removed the controversial tax on sanitary products but there is still so much to be done! In your opinion, what is the most powerful way to make a difference?
Speak up and spread the word! Support organisations (like Project REM!) that are focussed on making a difference, talk to friends & fam about the issues that matter to you. I’m very lucky to be in a privileged position with the ability to impact young people on a daily basis. If I’m doing my job well, then I’m empowering other young women of colour to do the same.