click here for more
Seven Quick Questions... Madison Van Staden

Seven Quick Questions... Madison Van Staden

Interviewed by
Jess Nicholson
Tuesday 19th April, 2016 11:16AM

Wellington-based musician Madison Van Staden has been slowly building up a name for herself with fascinating songs that blend together wistful elements of noise and folk, while being grounded by heartfelt lyricism. The musician, who has studied in the field of Sonic Arts, has little online presence and rarely performs publicly but puts her sonic ramblings out on Soundcloud for people to enjoy. However, she recently appeared as part of Eyegum Wednesdays and collective member Jess Nicholson took the opportunity to find out a bit more about the intriguing artist...

1. Where do you draw inspiration from when you’re writing music?

Um, I get a phrase stuck in my head for a week and then I just think about it a lot until get around to writing it. I don’t know how to explain it. I’ll just have a sentence that I want to use in a song - lyrics are definitely where I start. People say to me “Oh you’re such a talented musician”, but I don’t see that. I’m more of a lyricist, I’m really into lyrics, that’s where I start.

2. Is there a genre out there that you and your sound can relate to?

I just think I’m a folk musician. That’s the music I listened to when I was growing up – Bright Eyes and Bob Dylan and stuff like that. So yeah, that’s the genre I like to stick to, I don’t like to go into too many sub-genres. In my recordings I use a lot of noise, I think it comes from my Sonic Arts Degree where we listened to lots of sound and stuff like that, but I’ve always been interested in using background noise in recordings just to make my music a more interesting and a bit more relevant.

3. What’s your favourite kind of environment to perform in?

I haven’t done too many performances, but my favourite performance that I did was at the Performance Arcade in a shipping container. That was cool, it was outside, and all of the background noise came naturally.

4. Is there a reason why you perform under your birth name instead of a stage name?

Um… I’m just not good at coming up with nicknames. I tried so hard, like, I brainstormed for ages and every name I came up with was really terrible. So then I thought I’d just stick with my name as it is.

5. Do you have any kind of pre-gig ritual to get you ready and pumped?

I just get real nervous and go to the toilet lots… I don’t know if you want to write that down though…

6. How do you feel about the Wellington music scene?

I’m not sure if I can really comment on it, but I think it’s really good. I think Womb and Hex and Mermaidens are really amazing. There are some really strong female musicians in Wellington that get a lot of support and I think it’s really cool.

7. If you were a colour, what colour would you be?

Oh… I’d like to be a colour that clashes with a lot of other colours… I like orange. It’s right in your face, you can’t really ignore it. It’s hard to match with things, it’s an awkward colour.

This week will be the last Eyegum Wednesday for a wee while as they take a break to make room for the Comedy Fest. Performing will be Saturnian Noise Collective along with Shards, head over here for more information.