PARIS JEFFREE – Q&A

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Paris Jeffree is a Sydney born, London based Drummer. In early 2016, Paris was asked to join the Melbourne based electronic group The Avalanches as their full time touring drummer. Paris spent the next two years touring and performing at major festivals and headline shows as part of The Avalanches Wildflower World Tour.
Paris has recently relocated to London where she excitedly joins Years & Years as their new touring drumming.

When did you first play an instrument and why? What made you pick the drums?
I started learning the drums at the age of 12. I remember sitting behind a drum kit around the age of 8 or 9, and being absolutely fascinated by it. That feeling stayed with me until I was able to start having lessons.

Did you have a teacher or were you self-taught?
I had teachers from the age of 12 until around 22. Music is amazing in the sense that there is always something new to learn.

When did you first realise that you wanted to become a professional musician?
After seeing David Bowie live at the age of 14. It was a life altering experience. It was a feeling that I knew I wanted to experience again and again.

Do you have a practice routine?
Before touring full time, I used to practice around 5 hours a day. I’d mainly try to come up with a groove I couldn’t play and than i’d spend the rest of the day trying to figure out how to execute it & make it feel good. This would usually mean breaking it down and working on each individual component. At the end of the day, I would record and make a little video of it which I would share on Instagram. This way I had a finished product of the days work and I could keep track of my progress too. At the moment, I’ll practice our set before we head out for a weekend of festivals.

Have you ever lost your interest or passion for music? What helped you to keep on practicing and playing?
Luckily not. I still feel that same feeling of joy every time I sit behind the drums. It’s a rare thing to discover one’s life purpose and I believe if you do, you owe it to yourself to give that your all. That’s kind of been my mentality since I started playing professionally and has kept me practicing throughout the years.

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Do you think it is harder for women to succeed in the music industry?
Yeah there’s no doubt it’s a male dominated industry. I do feel that that’s changing. It felt harder and more isolating 5 years ago. I’m lucky to now be in a position where I’m surrounded by some incredible & inspiring women within the industry. I do believe it’s been a harder road to walk but the achievements feel greater. It feels like we’ve beaten the odds to get here and that feels empowering.

What advice would you give to aspiring musicians?
To be patient and not to worry. It’s easy to worry about things not happening, but if you keep at it and work hard I believe opportunities will eventually arrive.

What is it like to tour with Years and Years as compared to The Avalanches (for example)?
I moved to London to start touring with Y&Y. That’s been a great experience. Its very much a family vibe which is important when spending so much time on the road with each other. There’s a lot of love and care for one another, it’s a great team. I’m been lucky as The Avalanches was a similar experience.

What is your favourite thing about touring?
The shows first up, secondly getting to visit so many different places. I’ve always loved travelling so it’s nice to be able to combine both loves. Also, getting to eat so much good food!

Were you excited to play Glastonbury?
I was super excited to play Glastonbury. I lived in London at a young age so I’ve always understood the importance of Glasto and the Pyramid stage. It was definitely the highlight of my touring career so far.

Are there particular musicians who inspire you?
Definitely. We watched Nile Rodgers at a festival recently. His rhythm section were unreal.

A huge thank you to Paris for taking time to answer the questions.

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