Q&A

Kate Ce­ber­ano re­flects on 30 years in show­biz and the per­ils of social me­dia.

Sunday Herald Sun - Stellar - - Contents - In­ter­view by CAMERON ADAMS Kate Ce­ber­ano And Her Septet: 30 Year An­niver­sary show is on May 20 at Malvern Town Hall, Vic; ston­ning­ton­jazz.com.au.

Your 13-year-old daugh­ter, Gypsy, sang with you on Carols By Can­dle­light last Christ­mas, mak­ing her pub­lic de­but. Is this the start of the next Ce­ber­ano gen­er­a­tion in mu­sic? I don’t know. She was beau­ti­ful up there. Some­one asked her, “Clearly you want a ca­reer in mu­sic?” and she said, “No, I think I want to see what life brings me.” That was ace. She’s a good chick. You were in your first band, I’m Talk­ing, when you were a teenager… Gypsy and I are sim­i­lar; she’s very aware and sen­si­tive and eas­ily bruised. I got to over­com­pen­sate for that at the time by be­ing wild and chaotic on­stage. That was the ’80s. Peo­ple these days are obliged to be good be­fore they’ve had a crack at be­ing bad. Re­cently Gypsy said to me, “Frankly, I’m not in­ter­ested in get­ting fa­mous. Why would you want that at­ten­tion?” But when she sings it’s so good. I have to re­ally re­sist push­ing her, be­cause I want peo­ple to hear her but not vi­o­late that frag­ile thing of when it’s a per­son’s choice, not their obli­ga­tion. I’ve never felt obliged to sing. You up­date In­sta­gram fre­quently, yet you’re not very ac­tive on other social me­dia? Twit­ter kills me. After the [2015 AFL Grand Fi­nal] I said, “That’s it, I’m with­draw­ing sup­ply.” I got a syl­la­ble wrong and got vil­i­fied for be­ing the An­tichrist who didn’t know the na­tional an­them, even though I’ve sung it thou­sands of times! Peo­ple are read­ing Twit­ter and Face­book in­stead of lit­er­a­ture. As a kid, I had a diet of nov­els that kept me dream­ing about places and pos­si­bil­i­ties. Vinyl is back, real things, ana­logue, books, they’ll all come back. I found all my old cas­settes re­cently. There’s noth­ing more ro­man­tic in life than the per­fect mix tape that’s been made just for you. You’ve got a very rare po­si­tion in the mu­sic in­dus­try – you haven’t been freeze-framed into one genre. I look back and I feel this pull of the an­ar­chy cre­ated in me with I’m Talk­ing. I’ve been able to choose my own path for my whole ca­reer, which is amaz­ing. And the peo­ple who like me, get me. They come to ev­ery­thing. Peo­ple who like art do that. Your first jazz album, Kate Ce­ber­ano And Her Septet, turns 30 this year. Back when I put my album out, there was no No­rah Jones, Amy Wine­house, Eva Cas­sidy or Michael Bublé. I was a ro­man­tic; I loved how it looked and felt to sing that ma­te­rial. I love the legacy of those songs, and be­ing the per­son who can of­fer them to a new gen­er­a­tion. You rally against the con­cept of ageism in mu­sic… I got to sing a Cure song with Billy Bragg re­cently and I re­alised, “This is age­less.” I did some Shirley Bassey songs not long ago and she doesn’t tour any­more. You have to be the one to step up for that gen­er­a­tion. I don’t have to be on the ra­dio or get the at­ten­tion young artists have. I don’t want or de­sire that. I’ve only ever known artists like Deb­bie Harry, Kate Bush, Chrissie Hynde and Aretha Franklin. They tran­scend them­selves and be­come iconic through their own work. That’s what I would love. It’s nice when some­one in­tro­duces you as “the icon Kate Ce­ber­ano”.

"I got a syl­la­ble wrong and got vil­i­fied"

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