They’ve been a much-loved staple on Australia’s country music scene for well over a decade; and fans have delighted in the opportunity to watch them grow as artists, musicians and humans in that time. Now, The McClymonts are taking fans on the next step of their journey with their fifth album, Endless. We caught up with Sam McClymont to hear how things have changed and what to expect when they return to Townsville this Saturday night.
You’ve been touring since January; what a long stint!
I know! We’re two-thirds of the way through; on the home stretch now, but it’s been really nice. We only do weekends now, so you kind of have your home life during the week and then you pack up and see somewhere amazing around Australia for the weekend – it certainly doesn’t feel like ‘work’ that’s for sure.
How do you sustain the energy and enthusiasm of a tour when you are going for so long?
I think it’s having the breaks in between to be honest and we’ve learnt that now from doing this for 11 years. We used to go out on the road about five or six days a week and that would just get completely exhausting – the one day you’re home you wash your clothes, put them back in your bag again and you’re off. We found that wore you out a lot and you couldn’t give 100 per cent. So we just find having the break and being able to see our families during the week makes touring balanced.
It’s great to see a lot of regional stops on the tour. Was that an intentional move?
Oh absolutely! We try as much as we can to get to most places – it’s very difficult, Australia is so big! People are so receptive in regional areas, it’s amazing. They’ve supported us right from the very beginning, since we brought out the EP 11 years ago, so we want to be able to go and give back to everyone who’s been with us from the start.
How have you grown as songwriters and performers in that 11 years?
Even just the age makes you change – we started out as 20-year-olds and now we’re 30 and you just mature and change and grow so much. It’s a pretty pivotal time in your life going from such a young age, fresh out of school to now married, kids, families. You definitely mature in just that natural sense, but also, we’re up to our fifth album, so musically you grow just from working with different producers and band members and touring, you’re pretty much out practicing two, three nights a week and honing your craft every single weekend, so you change in that sense as well – by surrounding yourself with other artists. I think lots of people will be able to hear the change lyrically – you listen to the songs from when we started out to now, there’s definitely a change.
Did you approach this album differently from earlier ones?
We did want to make Endless really personal. We find that when we’re open and being true to ourselves, fans really connect with that. I mean the latest single, Don’t Wish it All Away, that came from a songwriting session and we were all sitting around and Molly had her little boy Ned there – he was only 8-weeks old at the time – and she said “Oh I can’t wait until he starts talking and crawling” and carrying on, and Brooke was like “Oh, Molly, stop! You’ve really got to enjoy every moment, because you’ll never remember him this little” and straight away we said we’ve got to write a song about this and here it is, it’s the second single and we’ve had such an amazing reaction to it and to the video and it’s been so positive because so may people can relate to that. We’re always rushing to the next thing and thinking what’s on tomorrow? and in the future? and what do I have to achieve?; and not being present. I think it’s really nice that our moment of realising that, really connected with people.
What can Townsville fans expect this weekend?
Oh, we’re so excited. It’s been a little while since we’ve been to Townsville; I think the last time was for the Carols a couple of years ago — it’ll be a different show to that! No Carols this time. Just a real high energy show, lots of story-telling and people really get to know us a lot more, we kind of let people in on what we’re about and what it’s like to be sisters travelling together and our relationship together. But lots of knew songs of Endless, but we don’t forget all the favourites from the other albums as well. It’s getting hard to pick from five albums now, but we try to do everyone’s favourite songs.
Catch The McClymonts on their Endless tour at the Dalrymple Hotel this Saturday, 20 May 2017. Click here for tickets.