We sat down with musicians featured in Avocado Toast the series - Colleen Dauncey and Julia Appleton. They love to write from a place of character, putting themselves in another's shoes in order to shine a light on a certain topic or emotion.
Have you had a chance to watch the trailer yet? What part of the show excited you the most? If not, check it out www.avocadotoastseries.com
We watched the trailer and loved it! What excites us the most about the show is seeing characters our own age being portrayed with such honesty. We can't wait to dive into the story and the relationships between the characters, and to see how the show uses music to elevate the storytelling.
Which song of yours is featured in Avocado Toast the series and why do you think it’s a good fit?
Our song "Right of Way" and Colleen's song "Worship" are both featured in the show, both of which were produced by our friend and collaborator Sydney Galbraith. We wrote "Right of Way" together after discussing how difficult it can be to navigate all sorts of relationships with people who walk a different path in life than we do. This theme seems to be a common thread between our music and Avocado Toast the series.
How much of yourself goes into your music?
Some songs are more auto-biographical than others, but as writers, there's always a little piece of us that lives inside every song we write. However, we also love to write from a place of character, putting ourselves in another's shoes in order to shine a light on a certain topic or emotion.
Who is a major influence for you and on your creativity?
Julia - My earliest influences came from listening to the oldies that my dad would play for me growing up, like The Beatles and The Eagles. My current favourite artist is Ben Rector, because he's such a good storyteller and his music has such strong melodic hooks. When I'm writing music, I'm often influenced by current events and the world around me.
Colleen - It's funny because my earliest influences also came from the oldies my dad would play around the house and on road trips. A lot of Beatles and Beach Boys, and 60s British Invasion artists. Maybe that's why Julia and I get along so well! It certainly gave me a love of harmony, which always finds its way into my music somehow. These days I'm influenced a lot by the music that I hear on my favourite TV shows and in movies. I find the combination of picture and music so fascinating, as they both work to elevate one another.
With so much going on in the world today, what’s your motivation to be a performer? Do you make music to explain? To get away? To move past? To widen our knowledge? To incite a conversation?
Julia - I've come to the realization that I use songwriting as a way to expand my knowledge of others and of the world around me, which is why I often write from the perspective of another person or a fictional character. However, during this current global pandemic, I was compelled to write a song called "Make It Out Alive" about my own personal experience with social distancing as a way to process my emotions. It was sort of a fluke, a happy little accident!
What's next for you as a creator?
Colleen - Well, I just spent a month in Los Angeles meeting other songwriters and music producers, and writing a boatload of songs. I was so excited to get back to Canada and share this music with my Toronto people, but I guess life had other plans and now we're all stuck inside due to Coronavirus! So I'm taking this time to keep writing and expanding on my catalogue of songs, so that I can start recording as soon as it's safe to go back into the studio. I'm really excited to be writing more music for film & TV these days, and continuing to compose for musical theatre as well, which has been a large part of my career for the past 10 years.