Following the recent success of his Australian Midnight in Motion Tour which saw award winning blues/soul troubadour Shaun Kirk selling out numerous headline shows across the country; the one man dynamo has announced a stack of new tour dates across Australia & New Zealand to launch his soon to be released new single Howlin At The Moon.
Kirk’s first release in over three years will come off the back of what the twenty nine year old describes as a “quarter-life crisis” ignited by a US Record Deal that fell through in questionable circumstances back in 2015. Determined to overcome his disappointment and grow from it, Kirk has since spent countless hours soul searching and honing his skills as a writer and musician inside his home studio on the outskirts of Melbourne; prevailing with a fresh new sound and groove to carry him into the next phase of his ever evolving career. A tour hardened Shaun Kirk does a quick Q&A on the road for Hi Fi Way: The Pop Chronicles.
How’s the tour going so far?
The tour is going brilliantly! So far we’ve hit New South Wales, Western Australia, South Australia, Regional Victoria and New Zealand!
What has been the highlight so far?
There’s been a number of sold out shows which is always a pretty special feeling but it’s hard to go past playing Bluesfest, Byron Bay as my overall highlight thus far.
Does it amaze you that your get play your music at all these wonderful places?
It really does. I never began playing music with the intention that people would actually listen and appreciate it, so the fact that a few years later I get to travel around and play to so many amazing crowds is pretty special.
Is your “quarter crisis” well and truly in the back of your mind now?
Certainly. Self awareness is something I’m really focused on these days. I’m a lot better at recognising when I may be slipping mentally and have the tools I need to deal with that when it happens now too.
Did you doubt yourself a lot during this period?
Massively! I had a US record deal fall through on me in strange circumstances back in 2015 and that began a slow downhill spiral into a very deep sea of self doubt. I think a lot of musicians are what we would call ‘perfectionists’ but this ordeal sent me a little over the edge. I was writing SO much between 2015-17 but nothing ever seemed to be ‘good enough’. Or at least that’s what my head was telling me.
Was there something that gave you that spark to get going again?
It was a new years resolution at the beginning of 2017 to start rehabilitating so I went about seeking professional help to get my mental health back in order and I’m forever grateful that I did!
What is the story behind the single Howlin’ At The Moon?
The song is about someone stuck in a ‘vicious cycle’. As humans we all get caught up in them from time to time after a certain event acts as a trigger (in my case – the US record deal falling through out of nowhere). Once we’re in these cycle’s we’re usually unaware of it and often turn to things like alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, food, work ect. to help relieve our stress. Only problem is that these things only act as short term fix and in the long term actually make things worse. Good news is that we can escape these cycles once we recognise that we are stuck in them and take action to break the cycle, and can even turn things around so much that we get trapped in what is called a virtuous cycle!
How was it co-writing with Joel Quartermain?
Great! Joel is a lovely dude and he works FAST, which is really inspiring to be around and taught me a lot in the short time we spent together.
What’s in store for the next release?
I’ve been chipping away at a number of songs with producer extraordinaire Nick Huggins and I think we’re really starting to find a sound and path to wander down for the next record.. It’s still early days so can’t give too much away of coarse 😉
What does the rest of the year look like for Shaun Kirk?
Planning to drop some more music before the end of the year so keep your eyes and ears peeled!
Interview by Rob Lyon
Catch Shaun Kirk on the remaining dates while tickets last…