One of the hardest working men in the Australian music industry Paul Greene is back on the road promoting his new single “Love Work Dance Trust.” I caught up with this passionate and fiercely independent muso this afternoon to chat about life on the road, how he inspired a Ben Harper hit, and why the Olympics are a corporate marketing scam.
You’re touring to promote your new single “Work Love Dance Trust.” What can you tell me about the song?
It’s inspired by a Tibetan Buddhist proverb that I saw written on a friend’s wall in blue crayon once, nearly ten years ago now. And on a drive to Bryon Bay from Sydney I had this song, which I thought was a bit of a joke, rolling around in my head. On long drives, that’s when I come up with a lot of my ideas, when I’m sitting in my car by myself. And I recorded it, I think I had a minidisk recorder at the time.
And it’s become probably my most requested song when I play live, which is pretty much all I do. It just seems to resonate with people. And I know it’s been used before – “Work like you don’t need the money, love like you’ll never get hurt, dance like nobody’s watching” is a bit of a cliché almost, sort of a modern cliché. But it’s interesting that song. With the way I write songs, I just make them up and bounce them off an audience and see what comes back, see what works and doesn’t work. And that’s definitely the song that has struck a chord with the most people.
You spend a lot of time on the road. What do you love about performing?
I love the individuality of it. It’s the journey that makes the songs a lot of the time, and really has established my sound and me as a performer. I particularly love being able to see the whites of the eyes, and seeing what happens when you bounce these songs off an audience of sometimes unsuspecting punters, seeing what their reaction is. People don’t have a chance to rereview or find out what’s going on a lot of the time. You get people’s raw reactions to the music. I get a lot out of that. I think that’s kind of what my whole project is really about.
What do you miss most when you’re on the road?
It’s more about what I miss when I’m not on the road!
OK then. What do you miss when you’re not on the road?
I miss being on the road! You very quickly forget about the uncomfortable beds. I’ve got to say after eight years of touring I’ve got it down to a fine art. I’m travelling at the moment with my seven-month-old daughter and my four-year-old daughter and my wife.
That would make things interesting!
Well, you know, I’d be sleep deprived if I was at home as well. I get to travel with my family. I come from Culbarra Beach, which is on the South Coast of New South Wales, and I love going home there. But I don’t go away from work. My life just kind of continues in another place. I just move from place to place, rather than having to go away and come back. I feel like this is my life, travelling and playing music, and I get to do it with my family. I feel like the luckiest person in the world.
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