When speaking with Gin Wigmore, you immediately get the impression that you’re talking with a character from a Wild West adventure: a cowgirl who likes her whiskey cheap and her trigger finger itchy, ready at a moments notice to burn your town to the ground and ride off, guns blazing. It’s this side of Wigmore’s personality that has been amplified for her second record Gravel & Wine, with the songs narratives being channeled through a strong-willed self-reliant heroine who has little time for bullshit.
“Oh my god, If I could live in my wild side all the time I think I’d be having such a great hilarious time. But I think everyone would probably be so sick of me for being such a weirdo that I would be hanging by myself a fair bit. It’s really cool; I love it; it’s great and the fact that I get to be that character and that person whenever I play live is pretty satisfying,” she said.
This transformation can in part be traced to Wigmore’s appreciation for Quentin Tarantino and Western films, which has led to the New Zealand songstress opening shows with the theme from Clint Eastwood’s A Fistful of Dollars and to create a somewhat Tarantino-esque music video for the single Black Sheep.
“I used to really not give a fuck about doing music videos because I didn’t really know what to do and what was cool visually and what I liked on screen… Now I’ve got this kind of love affair and passion for films… I kind of know what I want and I realize they can be just as powerful as music,” Wigmore said.
Yet it’s not just the character and onscreen persona which Wigmore embodies that gives Gravel & Wine such a joyful reckless abandon but also the manner in which it was recorded. Enlisting the help of Jake Sinclair, Butch Walker and The Black Widows, the music was laid down live and in as few takes as possible.
“It’s all recorded with a bunch of musicians from Georgia, a quite southern mad bunch of dudes. So it’s quite different; it felt outside the boarders,” Wigmore said.
“I think it gave it this kind of looseness that’s really what I wanted to get across on this, I didn’t want it to be to perfect… Having guys like Butch and Jake…play instruments they don’t usually play also brings about this kind of naivety and looseness as well, which is really cool,” she said.
“It’s kind of got a real freedom and a sense of whatever goes,” she said.
Although Gravel & Wine is due for release this Black Friday, April 13, the album has already gone double platinum in Wigmore’s home of New Zealand. With such validation from her native country, it would seem a strange experience to travel to neighbouring Australia and still remain relatively unknown. Having just completed a tour of Australia to promote her new record, Gigmore welcomed the challenge.
“Because I haven’t played in Australia for so long, I was back to square one and going, ‘Hey check me out, check out my music’. People had never heard of me before, which is cool because I’ve been playing in New Zealand now for so long — the last three years — and going from having such an adoring crowd to a crowd that takes a while to warm… it was really cool. I like having a challenge on my hands,” Wigmore said.
“It feels like a nice pat on the back from your mum or something when New Zealand gets behind it. Either way, it’s like therapy for me; I think music. I think I’d definitely be in the loony bin if I wasn’t writing songs. So either way, validation or no validation, I’m just stoked to get it out there,” she said.
Garvel & Wine comes out in Australia this Friday, April 13, 2012. If you’re still unsure what to expect from Wigmore’s second record, let the lady herself sum it up for you…
“A confident, strong swagger of a record that you’ll really fucking love (laughter).”
Watch: Gin Wigmore – Black Sheep
Watch: Gin Wigmore Gravel & Wine Behind The Scenes
Gin Wirmore’s new album Gravel and Wine will be released this Friday April 13th