Fresh off the plane from touring America and sitting at the tip of the metaphorical iceberg that is his ever expanding career, Josh Cashman is conquering Australia one gig at a time. A country boy at heart, his fresh and honest approach to writing is beautifully raw and feels like an insight into his deepest thoughts and experiences. Drawing influence from the likes of Australian natives Matt Corby and John Butler Trio, his music gives us the sense that he is coming into his own and sharing his creative journey with you. Cashman’s latest track ‘Beauty In Grey’ is a heartbreaking commentary on his experience with love, trust, and growing up, it’s one to listen to if you’re falling in love, falling apart, or need a new tune to scream in the shower. Josh took a moment off from making the world fall in love with him to chat about his time on the Tash Sultana tour, his upcoming releases, and what the future has to offer.
When I was growing up, the first album I ever bought which has definitely stuck with me until now is John Butler Trio – Sunrise Over Sea. I remember dad asked me to ride my bike down to Sanity when I was like 10, to go buy him the album haha. So that one has definitely stuck with me. One that’s a bit more current, probably Tame Impala – Currents, the whole album is unbelievable, also Bon Iver‘s latest album 22, A Million as well. I couldn’t pick (one) favourite.
Growing up in Gippsland Victoria, what kind of live music were you exposed to there? Any major influences?
We didn’t really have a heap of live music back at home, music kind of ended up like an accidental career. Playing music was always a hobby for me growing up, the only time I ever really performed when I was living back in Gippsland was just in front of my school at the assembly. There were a couple open mic nights here and there which eventually led me to do cover gigs and stuff like that. It wasn’t really until I moved to Melbourne that I gained a whole heap of inspiration. There are so many artists and so many creative people around the city. So moving to Melbourne definitely opened the horizon to that aspect of music.
Do you feel more comfortable performing live, or would you rather lock yourself in a room and spend your days just writing away new material?
I feel like they are both such different experiences in themselves. I love being in the studio I think it’s my creative place where I can write and discover new sounds and new directions for my music, but sharing the energy of performing live on stage is definitely the biggest thrill that I could get as an artist, I love them both.
You’ve just spent 3 months being crazy busy in America, was it everything you expected?
It was amazing! I was there for a couple of months, did the Tash (Sultana) tour for a little bit, also did SXSW. The crowds over there and the shows that we played, especially while touring with Tash were phenomenal, the support we got was insane. The rooms where we were playing were always full like more than half an hour before I got on as an opener. The response I got overall was fantastic, and a lot of my biggest fans and listeners are now over in New York and LA, and then I think Melbourne is third on the list, which is crazy. I felt a bit like a small fish in a big pond at some points but ultimately it was such a huge learning experience and I loved every second.
What are your top 3 touring essentials?
Heaps of water, lots of music to listen to on the road, and I’m obsessed with salami, so I always like to have a roll of salami with me or some slices stored somewhere if I feel like a snack.
Your newest song ‘Beauty In Grey’ seems to be about finding light in the darkest of places and learning from mistakes. It holds such a strong meaning and sentimentality to it. Was it a hard track to release to the world, or was it more of a therapeutic way of expressing yourself?
It was definitely hard to release because the song comes from a pretty dark place, so releasing it was quite nerve wracking, but I got everything I needed to say out through this piece of music. I’m not particularly proud of what I wrote the song about, but in saying that I am proud of being able to express myself through the song. Songwriting is a much easier way for me to express myself so I am really proud of this track.
Coachella is definitely near the top of the list, but it would also be amazing to do a home town show at The Forum Theatre in Melbourne, I have always wanted to play there. I’ve seen some of my all time favourite artists play there, I think it’s such a beautiful venue so I would love to do a gig there one day.
What does the end of the year hold for you?
Releasing my EP, and I just want to get out as much music as possible. I have a lot of music ready to go, so the next 12 months will definitely be focused on releasing my music and playing as many shows as possible. It will be a pretty intense touring schedule when the EP drops, I am doing a few house/backyard shows, and hopefully, a few festival shows over the summer.
You can see Josh Cashman play at the Northcote Social Club on Friday the 4th of August, grab tickets here.