The Nudge Interview

If you're lucky enough to have found your dancing feet listening to The Nudge then you know exactly what they mean when they describe their music as, 'psychedelic swampy blues with an element of party'. These boys know how to collaborate and create music that moves people. Literally. James Coyle gives us the latest low down on the trio.


What’s rockin’ in the world of The Nudge?

Hmmm. You know Pat, we have always had a few ambitious plans, which have gotten a lot more humble since we started. We are always trying to play in new parts of the world, and to be consistent about going back to those places. But plans aside, the most continuously rockin' thing about The Nudge is the music we play. Now this doesn’t sound very humble but it's completely to do with us as friends and contemporaries. I really like how Iraia (Whakamoe) plays drums, and how Ryan (Prebble) sings and plays guitar. The Nudge has another album project in the pipeline and we are loving our new creations as a band.


How have business trends and technologies influenced your creative model?

He he. Our technologies are not very recent! In fact, we are pretty committed to going backwards in time. Funnily enough Iraia is the most progressive technologically. He has recently invested in a flash drum pad, which we might be recording old sounds into very soon! Ha ha.

Business, on the other hand, is very important to us. The Nudge is growing into a model that in a small way financially supports us as individuals. We are interested in the realities of the music business at the moment. For example, there is money in touring and playing shows, licensing and gig merchandise, but very little else.

Despite this, it's very important to continually create music, release albums and make videos. While this obviously satisfies the creative outlets of an original music band, it also creates news and interest, which ultimately leads back to ticket sales.


What place does generosity have in the world of music?

That is an interesting question and I might have to step outside of The Nudge and answer this as James. Generosity is vital and it will always come back to you in some way or form. The first thing that comes to mind is about being the host ... when a touring band comes to town that I'm supporting or something, I always like to make the effort to help host their time in Wellington. When you can be kind with your resources, time and facilities, you should. 

But if we are talking about playing charity or benefits concerts ... to be generous to one organisation means you have to say 'no' to something else and from experience I know you can't please everyone.


Which artist or creative do you think has created the biggest positive social change in this world?

Fuck Pat that is a big call. I don't really know man. That song, "I Just Called to Say I Love You" by Stevie Wonder always makes me feel good and happy, which I am pretty sure is pretty universal. In fact it often makes me cry 'cos I associate it with a memory, either true or made up, of me and my mum singing it together and happy times we had together when I was young. 

So there it is. Stevie Fucking Wonder. But you know, are we going to idolise the faces of popularity for bringing social change to the world but turn a blind eye while government and corporate armies rape and pillage their way through developing countries and destroy the small amount of beauty and diversity we have left? This shit is happening now and is more widespread than ever. Bob Marley was amazing for singing about the inequalities of his land but Jamaica is now crushed under the thumb of the IMF. Who of his high profile admirers did anything about Jamaica's debt problems? Who stopped the IMF and American apparel companies turning the ports of Jamaica into a privatised state, where workers could get paid under the minimum wage set by the local government?

One guy I really really admire is Fela Kuti. That guy really stood up for himself in a corrupt state. He declared his compound an independent zone and fought hard every time the powers-that-be try to take away his independence. That song 'Zombie' about the African Army culture is top notch. But then again, the guy had 17 wives, so what does that say about social change in respect of feminist principles? Speaking of feminist principles, the feminist historian and writer from Christchurch, Elsie Locke, brought about a lot of social change; from initiating Family Planning, writing NZ History books that shared Maori and Pakeha perspectives, nuclear-free campaigning, Avon river clean up, to forcing groundbreaking changes to the Resource Management Act. Bless her soul!


Imagine the world the way you want future generations of children to inherit it. How does it look? 

I want the bush and birds back in NZ. Fuck dairy farming, fuck mining, and fuck heavy metal industries. I actually quite like the current plan for Wellington to advance the trend of becoming service providers, not manufacturers. I am also a big fan of small-scale productions, like People's Coffee, but I fucken hate that Exide Battery Factory in Petone. Good riddance Exide. 

I really like cities and I see cities as key to the future of the population; to become more dense and have less suburban sprawl. Less cars. But to be really clever about how we bring small-scale bush and food production and birds back into that kind of environment. When I was at University I worked on this idea of a hydroponic forest that could travel around the world. I still really like the idea that we all live really close together but can enjoy fresh air and clean food.


Who would be in your ultimate super group?

I was lucky enough to just be in a great super group: the Fly My Pretties show. That was awesome.


What inspires you?

I'm still inspired by anything Jack Kerouac wrote.

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