DOLLY’S Matthew Galea sat down with the baben’, stylin’ and incredibly charming member of In Stereo to get the goss on errythang from girls to music.
“IF A PERSON IS JUST COMFORTABLE WITH THEMSELVES, THAT IS THE MOST ATTRACTIVE THING.”
WE FIRST MET YOU GUYS AT THE START OF 2016 – WHAT’S CHANGED SINCE THEN?
I feel like we’ve grown closer, the boys and I and the boys and DOLLY. I think we’re more relaxed together and we’re more relaxed around other people. And we’re more businessey – we can have fun but we have really learnt to focus and we get things done really quickly now, which is awesome.
WHEN DID YOU FIRST TAP IN TO YOUR LOVE OF MUSIC?
Half of my mum’s side is really musical and my dad was in a bush band, so I’ve always been around music. But, growing up, I was actually interested in acting and I originally started music as a way of building my confidence for drama. But then as I worked a little harder on music it became my sole focus.
HAD YOU ALWAYS DREAMED OF BEING IN A BAND?
When you’re young and you get a guitar for Christmas, you do the whole “I’m going to be a rock star” thing, but before meeting Jakob and Chris it was never really a thing of “I’m going to play Wembley Stadium”. After meeting the boys and doing little gigs here and there, I realised it was something I could work towards and try to achieve.
IS BEING IN A BAND EVERYTHING YOU THOUGHT IT WOULD BE?
It’s completely different to what everyone assumes it’s like. They just think you’re writing songs, playing shows and doing the whole rock star thing, like meeting chicks – and there is all of that, but the core part of a musical group is the music, and you have to work pretty late and get up early while you’re on tour. It’s still quite glorious and it’s the most fun thing in the world, but there is a bit of a grind that I don’t think people see.
AND ARE CHRIS AND JAKOB THE BANDMATES YOU ALWAYS DREAMED OF HAVING?
Honestly, yes, because we have a really good mix. Chris really tightens the group and gives us clear focus, and Jakob is super determined and also super fun. It really creates a healthy balance of fun and work, ’cos they’re both determined and are also the greatest people to hang around.
WHERE WOULD YOU SAY YOU FIT INTO THAT?
I think when we’re creating music, Chris and Jakob come up with the ideas but I tend to formulate the words a little better and add in some smarter changes to the words, and then we all work together in that sense. But as three individuals, I just make horrible jokes and everybody does the whole “That was so bad”, but I think that’s where I fit.
BEING FAMOUS COMES WITH A CERTAIN LEVEL OF PRESSURE. HOW ARE YOU HANDLING IT ALL?
I personally handle it OK, but compared to the other two boys I’m pretty stern on people causing a ruckus, especially over social media. People on the internet feel like they have a shield, so they can be pretty harsh.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR GF.
Her name is Gala. She’s really creative, artistic and super into art, which is awesome ’cos I’ve never been the sportiest person on the planet, and meeting another person who is also into the arts is a good thing.
HOW DOES SHE FEEL ABOUT ALL THE ATTENTION FANS GIVE YOU?
She is completely fine with it, 100 per cent. She is actually really supportive of everyone and happy that we have a large following behind us.
WHAT’S THE BEST THING A FAN HAS EVER SAID TO YOU?
I’m a fan of all the silly things, like one girl came up to us and was like “Ethan and Jakob, I love you both, but Chris, I just really need to touch your eyebrows!”. That’s the sort of stuff that sticks with me, if everybody is just chill. I love the people who come to meet and greets and just chat – I think it’s really cool ’cos I’m a people person. I just like to talk to everybody if I can.
WOULD YOU EVER DATE A FAN?
I’m easily one of the most laid-back people; I think if I like the person and connect with them, then why not? Everybody is a person, right?
SO WHAT SHOULD A FAN DO TO GET YOUR ATTENTION?
I think the most beautiful thing about anyone is if they can be themselves, because when you feel like you need to fit into a certain clique, it’s not fun. I feel like everyone has been in that position where they feel like they need to fit in somewhere. If a person is just comfortable with themselves, that is the most attractive thing.