Jack Raymond: The Sound of Roots Driven Australiana

Words: Louise Nilsson
Interviewee: Jack Raymond
Photos: Provided by Jack
Raw, bluesy and smokey vocals, drift down the street, alongside raspy cords. In the corner of a narrow yet bustling nook, right infront of a bar, is where the sound emanates from. Jack Raymond frequently serenades this place, where the locals drink and sway. His lyrics are imaginative, honest and passionate. Portraying the strength, beauty and agony of love – or the sweet joy of cigerretes and they’re lifelong toll.

Jack grew up in alpine Victoria, in the small town of Harrietville. He moved to Noosa in the Sunshine State a few years ago and is now a staple in the local music scene. With his face magnified on a mural in an Alley Way, he has already left a permannent mark here.

Jack has released three original songs so far, and his next tune ‘Wide Eyes’ will drop this Saturday. He says it’s catchy and upbeat, inspired by bands like Mumford & Sons and Ben Howard. He is also working on a few other songs and tells me we can expect his first E.P later this year.

When I ask Jack how he would describe his music in three words he replies: ‘Roots Driven Australiana.’

‘It’s not necesarily one genre and looking at the E.P we are working on every song is a bit different,’ he says.
‘It doesn’t really sit within one genre, or sit within a theme.’ 

‘Its up and down, lots of slow stuff and lots of fast stuff.’

Jack recorded his latest song with Steve at Yama-nui studios on the Sunshine Coast.

“The way that he treated this song was a real experience,” Jack says.

“From writing Wide Eyes to recording it, was only about a week so, it was a very fresh song.

‘I went in with an idea and a basic layout, within an afternoon we had a fun song down to demo stages.

‘I called in Lawrence Maynard from “Those Folk” to assist with mandolin to really bring the track to life.

‘Steve played the keys and bass on this track and put his producing knowledge into it.’

Jack finds inspiration to begin writing songs in the small things, as well as from a deeper emotional place.

‘With Wide Eyes for instance, it was just a fleeting glimpse in the morning, of the sun coming through the window while my partner was still asleep and seeing her face light up.’

‘But I guess a lot of my other songs come from, sort of a sadder place.’

‘So you’re kind of pulling from that emotion as opposed to an action, or something happening.’

Jack says his day starts with a coffee and he says this with urgency, so I’m convinced its a very important part of his process.

‘I normally wake up and start playing guitar, as soon as I’m caffeinated and see if the ideas strike me to write, or if I’m going to sit there and learn some new covers for my shows.’

‘As a job, playing lots of cover’s gigs … I’m just sort of getting geared up for those and playing heaps of guitar.’

‘Then I forget to eat, normally.

‘Then I spend two hours wondering why I’ve got no energy and then I have to go find some food and then I go to work, head off to a cafe or a bar or something.’

Jack doesn’t only play local gigs he has recently come back from a tour through Queensland, New South Wales & Victoria. He also played his songs in January at locally organised festival Rumble in the Junga.

Jack says he hopes to be able to travel and play his music to everyone who wants to hear it.

‘I would love to travel this country that we live in and sing my songs to people.’

‘So I’m manifesting in 10 years, I’ll be able to do that.

‘It doesn’t have to be to thousands of people you know, if its just for 10 people in a living room, I’de be happy.’