Iva way it’s still mu­sic

Iva Davies has never un­der­stood the di­vide be­tween the clas­sics and rock, writes Siob­han Duck

Herald Sun - Switched On - - Guide -

FOR many years Iva Davies lived a dou­ble life. By day he wore a din­ner suit and played the oboe in a classical wind ensem­ble group; by night — af­ter a quick change in the back of the car — he was a scruffy mu­si­cian play­ing acous­tic gui­tar in smoky clubs.

Davies, who rose to fame as the front­man with 1980s rock band Ice­house, says he has never un­der­stood why mu­si­cians must be forced to spe­cialise in one genre.

‘‘Peo­ple seem to feel the need to pi­geon­hole you,’’ he says. ‘‘As a re­sult I have never been able to es­tab­lish full rock and roll cred be­cause of my train­ing as a classical mu­si­cian.

‘‘At the same time the classical fra­ter­nity have kept me at a dis­tance be­cause I dared to dab­ble in rock.

‘‘I have never re­ally un­der­stood the need to choose one mu­sic dis­ci­pline over an­other. It’s all mu­sic to me.’’

Davies is ap­pear­ing as a judge on Chan­nel 7’s new re­al­ity se­ries Bat­tle of the Choirs.

The show, as with Davies him­self, strad­dles two dif­fer­ent mu­si­cal gen­res— rein­vent­ing the tra­di­tional view of choirs as slightly-daggy, psalm-singing church groups to rock ’n’ roll­belt­ing mu­si­cal per­form­ers.

Davies, who grew up in a mu­si­cal fam­ily where both his par­ents were avid choir singers, was ea­ger to be part of the new show.

He says he has been asked to judge sev­eral mu­si­cal re­al­ity shows be­fore Bat­tle of the Choirs but re­fused be­cause he wasn’t in­ter­ested in be­ing part of pro­grams that were celebrity ve­hi­cles or aimed at man­u­fac­tur­ing stars.

‘‘I have been ap­proached a few times to be part of th­ese sorts of television judg­ing pan­els over the years,’’ he says.

‘‘What I liked about this one was that it was about peo­ple who were do­ing it for the love of it, not for their own suc­cess.’’

Davies joins for­mer Hi-5er Charli De­laney, Choir of Hard Knocks men­tor Jonathon Welch and choral mu­sic ex­pert Ge­orge Tor­bay on the judg­ing panel. The se­ries is hosted by Sun­rise’s David Koch.

Davies says Bat­tle of the Choirs will rev­o­lu­tionise peo­ple’s per­cep­tion of choirs with groups singing pop­u­lar songs by Pink, Queen, AC/DC and Kylie Minogue. Bat­tle of the Choirs, G Chan­nel 7, 7.30pm, Sun­day Singing con­test Du­ra­tion: 1 hour

Good judge:

Iva Davies says he’s a Bat­tle of the Choirs

judge be­cause peo­ple are do­ing it for love.

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