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Aussie artists
Welcome to Living in the Land of Oz

Howzat! Archive - January 30th 2013

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JUST SAY CC
CC Martini released her debut album, All The Way, in 2008. Shock invested heavily in the record and it should have been a smash. The Howzat! review stated: "CC Martini is sassy she deserves to be Australia's hip hop queen." We also loved her wicked sense of humour, quoting a line from Dirty Thoughts: "I've been to all-girls boarding schools for six years or more/ No matter what the nuns taught me, I still act like a whore." Five years later, CC has resurfaced in LA, releasing a poptastic new album, Girl Scout (available now on iTunes and through justsaycc.bandcamp.com). "I came here in search of what I call 'phase two'," CC says, "and I was on the run from drowning in credit card debt! I've always wanted to move to the States; it just took a while to do it." She's now just "CC". "CC Martini seemed like its own little era that I was ready to separate from," she explains. "I wanted to start fresh."

CC made Girl Scout with No Doubt's Stephen Bradley. "We met 10 years ago when he was in Australia on No Doubt's Rock Steady tour. After the show we hung out back stage and rapped to each other all night." They reconnected in LA, and a personal tragedy gave CC the motivation to make the record. "I lost my little brother and that changed everything. I realised we can die at any time, so you may as well be doing what you love and not shoving aside your dreams." CC moved into Stephen's house for four months. "It was so fun. He is very amazing and talented. I love him." Stephen even recorded a trumpet solo, which concludes the record.

CC calls her new sound "Pip Pop" - a playful mix of hip hop and pop. The album is packed with party anthems, including two songs CC wrote with Beki Colada, Bad Name and Sugar Rush. "I remember once recognising 'Beki from the Mavis's' when I was a teenager at the St Kilda Festival," CC recalls. "She was one of the first famous people I'd ever seen, except for my uncle Whitt from Spiderbait. Even though we'd played a gig on the same night at the Espy, we didn't really get to know each other until we came to America. Now we're neighbours in Hollywood!"

On Girl Scout, CC sounds a little like a 2013 version of Cyndi Lauper. Who are her pop idols? "Cyndi Lauper, for sure, plus Eminem, Lil' Kim, Lauryn Hill, Gwen Stefani, Katy Perry. Lately, I'm loving Marina and the Diamonds and I've discovered Jessie and the Toys Boys." Aussie actors have conquered Hollywood, so is it cool being an Aussie singer in LA? "I don't really know that I've conquered it yet, but I am surviving," CC laughs. "I'm not getting recognised at the local supermarket. But people are very friendly and supportive of each other. And they do love the accent and are intrigued by my plight."

CC was shaken, but not stirred, by the experience of releasing her debut album, which included the thumping single Champagne Taste. "Releasing that album was an experience, that's for sure. It was my first go and I couldn't have done it without such a great team of friends and supporters. We had some great times. And I learnt a lot about the industry. I think the main thing that's stuck with me is you can't expect things to just happen magically. You have to get out there and hustle hard. Just because you're on a label, you can't just expect things are going to work. You need to be going after it all the time and be proactive and enthusiastic. It's not easy. Having some great songs and being great live is only a small part of the big picture. It's also a lot about luck and being in the right place at the right time and being ready."

Was CC a girl scout/guide? "No, but I was very outdoorsy. I went to pony club and did jazz ballet and all that stuff. I grew up in a little country town [Finley] in NSW until I was 14, when I left for boarding school in Melbourne." What does CC miss most about home? "My family and friends. That's what they all say, but it's that simple. Oh, and gold class cinema - they don't have that here!" Has CC still got champagne taste? "I live quite modestly; I have no credit cards any more. I try to be grown up with money and responsibility. Of course, I love the champagne taste lifestyle, but only if someone else is paying."


MAVIS'S RETURNING
CC's Hollywood buddy Beki Colada is coming home next month to do a special reunion gig with her brother, Matt Thomas, at Yah Yah's on 16 February. Also on the bill is another Ballarat act, the Dead Salesmen duo.


CHART WATCH
Birds of Tokyo score the first Aussie Top 10 hit for 2013.

Lanterns BIRDS OF TOKYO (number five, debut)
What You've Done To Me SAMANTHA JADE (23)
Best Night JUSTICE CREW (27)
Get Along GUY SEBASTIAN (35)
Party Bass BOMBS AWAY (39)

A couple of big country debuts for The Wolfe Brothers and O'Shea.

Armageddon GUY SEBASTIAN (number nine)
The Sapphires SOUNDTRACK (15)
Flume FLUME (16)
It's On THE WOLFE BROTHERS (18, debut)
One + One O'SHEA (24, debut)
Beautiful Nightmare REECE MASTIN (26)
Lonerism TAME IMPALA (33)
Samantha Jade SAMANTHA JADE (34)
All For You COLD CHISEL (36)
The Rubens THE RUBENS (39)


HOWZAT! PLAYLIST
Pool Party CC
Broken Heart Attack BEKI COLADA
Lonely Avenue LAUREN BRUCE
Wednesday LIVINGSTONE DAISIES
Thunder THE MAVIS'S

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