Tag Archives: Steve Earl

Kahl Wallis – Solo Medic

Kahl Wallis of The Medics ventures back to the north to play the Tanks in support of Steve Earle and the Dukes this Thursday. After spending the last part of 2015 in Cairns recording his solo record with Mark Myers he is using the Medics hiatus as a chance to expand his musical horizons. We had a chat ahead of the show.

Steve Earle is a legend. You must be pretty happy to be doing this show?

I am Just starting to get into his back catalog and my parents are pretty proud to see me supporting such an icon, such a legendary singer/songwriter. So for me it such an honour. I’m an up and coming singer songwriter I’ve just come from performing in a rock band. I am learning how to stand on my own two feet and he is a bit of an elder. I want to learn from his career. It’s an amazing experience and I am in awe.

Whats happening with The Medics?

The Medics are still going on our second record. We just took some time away from music. Our Bass player Charles just got married. We had already recorded a number of demos for the second record working in various studios around Brisbane. Just getting Ideas out and working on songs. We hit a wall and decided to take some time off and have a little bit of a break.

Will we see The Medics here any time soon?

We’ve been back and forth for holidays. A lot of our family is still in Cairns. Once the album is finished it would be great to come back for a launch but nothings really planned as yet. We are just ramping things back up getting ready to work on the record again. I have a little bit to do on my solo record then we will get back to producing The Medics second record.

Will you be back in cairns to finish the solo record?

Nothings really planned yet as we have had holidays but hopefully I will catch up with Mark when I visit. He recorded our first EP with just a mac laptop and a couple of microphones. He’s such a great all round guy.

You won the Australian Council of the Arts ‘dreaming’ award last year. How has that changed things?

That has helped me produce my solo record. There is going to be a short documentary/behind the scenes video attached to the record as well. The idea of recording in cairns was that the aboriginal side of my family lives near Lockhart River in Cape York. It’s quite remote and I am looking forward to getting back there. Wanting to learn more about the language and culture and incorporate that back into my music. Its one of those things I will do throughout my life, learning and educating about culture. We have to keep it alive for future generations.

Pop culture seems to be avoiding activism but it seems that with indigenous artists activism seems to be alive and well. Is that something you have taken on?

Absolutely, it’s almost inevitable for a young First Nations artist to be political through their art. We all have a story to tell whether its about personal experiences or about family experiences. My grandmother grew up on a mission and my grandfather was a cane cutter, part of the stolen wages. My grandmother was part of the stolen generations. Just to learn about their life back then is amazing. My father was 7 years old before he was considered a citizen, before he was classed as a human being and my grandmother was one of the first in cairns to make an aboriginal flag and start marching. Its one of those things that may lay dormant but I think it’s inevitable. In this time we are in now more and more people are waking up to the dark secrets of this country. The frontier wars, the massacres. People say the Port Arthur massacre was the largest massacre but there have been many many more massacres here in Australia. We talk about being in the lucky country but this country is built on the destruction of a beautiful and harmonious culture. There have always been people creating awareness and teaching about our culture. Modern technology seems to be making it world wide. Sharing our culture. I think it’s important for people to be taught about the true history of our country.

Kahl Wallis supports Steve Earle and the Dukes this Thursday 24th of March at the Tanks. Tickets available through Ticketlink

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