Brodie-Ann Wright frontwoman for Brisbane-based band Felinedown is without a doubt a rock goddess personified. Whether performing burlesque or rocking festival crowds with her band she’s got the moves (not to mention an amazing wardrobe!).
What do you wear on stage?
Well it changes all the time but right now – although I love me some sexy heels – I’ve been wearing my ‘Cons’ (sneakers) more and more. I think as the music changed and got faster and heavier I just felt the need to be able to move more and more. I guess although I still think my tastes fall on the flamboyant side my clothes are a little less Bowie/Goldfrapp this record and a little more Gwen Stefani/ Shirley Manson/the Prodigy lads. I need to be able to rock the fuck out and not feel restricted by my clothes, but apart from that anything goes!
How important is your stage outfit to you?
Like with theatre or dance I feel like my stage outfits and make up help me get in the head space of performing. Getting ready and putting that clothing, jewelry and make up on is a bit of a pre-gig ritual for me.
Make-up-wise what’s your onstage must?
Probably my eyeliner if I really had to choose… I just don’t feel right without my cat eyes on ;)
What’s your biggest beauty indulgence?
I’d say most expensive would be getting my hair done… right now it’s going from black to blonde… no easy feat! But most indulgent would be massages. After a recent gig my muscles and “mosh neck” were so bad I had to go and get a massage. Pretty indulgent huh? Also the Buffy bar and Rose Lavender water from Lush…so, so nice!
What are your offstage outfits like?
Apart from when I really have to tone it down for work… they really aren’t that different from my onstage ones. I love getting dressed up and the style varies day to day depending on what music/movie/ book I’ve been obsessing over that day. I’m pretty sure the guys are always wondering… who the hell is going to show up at rehearsal this time?
Who are your style icons?
I’m inspired by a lot of characters in books and films but also by people like Vivienne Westwood, David Bowie, Debbie Harry, Vali Myers, Helena Bonham Carter, Gwen Stefani, Joan Jett, Dita, and Shirley Manson. Basically anyone who wears what pleases them and never worries about what’s current or on trend. I love style blogs like Face Hunter, Sartorialist and Style Scout too seeing street fashion from all over the world is wicked inspiring.
What do you do creatively when you’re not creating/playing music?
I love to dance and paint and in the last couple of years really discovered how much I love to cook. Get me in the kitchen with some wine and great tunes and I dance around all crazy and have me some messy fun.
What makes your musical style different?
I think the blending of so many different styles and influences from us as a song writing team really makes it something different. In Oz there aren’t that many bands making industrial-dance-rock-pop-triphop-blues-noise music, especially fronted by a chick. It sets us apart yes but we also feel it allows us to play in lots of different line ups and to lots of different crowds.
Have you ever encountered sexism within the music community?
Not particularly. I guess coming from a background in burlesque you tend to view being a woman and being on stage differently. I’ve never viewed being female and being in a band as a negative, in fact I think it’s in a lot of ways an advantage. I tend to be told my onstage performances are quite sexual in nature and I make no apologies for that, even though I doubt if I was a man my performances would be described in the same manner. I don’t think that devalues or detracts from the music we write. That’s just the way I’m feeling in the moment and the content of our songs. The only time I’ve ever felt insulted because I was a girl was when a guy from another band backstage one night asked me ‘so…which band is your boyfriend in?’ assuming I couldn’t possibly be there to play music myself. Noice one man… good work!
How do you deal with the haters?
I guess you just have to realise that there is always going to be people who dislike you and or your music and for lots of different reasons. You’re not going to nor should you aim to please everyone. How many of your musical, artistic or cultural heroes have been slandered, turned away or worse? Who cares?! We’re all made of the same stuff and headed back to the same place so there really isn’t any need to sweat the small stuff…but hell I’m only human and some things still sting a bit. I just try to keep the above in mind and do my best to be true to myself. Being surrounded and supported by my band and my family goes along way too.
Tell me about your latest projects.
Really it’s been heads down arse up for the last 12 months and all my focus has been on Felinedown. I put any other projects on hold and rightly so I think. I want all my energy and passion poured into this new record and into the shows. I’m so happy with ‘Trap Rebaited’ and I can’t wait for all the upcoming shows too!
Listen to/watch Felindown:
You can also check out a previous chat I’ve had with Brodie here.
See Felinedown… tour dates:
Friday 7th October – Gaelic Hotel, Sydney
Saturday 8th October – Uber, Brisbane
Friday 14th October – Fowlers, Adelaide
Saturday 15th October – Revolver, Melbourne
Keep dreaming big, big, big!
*Photo credits: 1 / 2 – Jessie James / 3 – Ian Day