Interview: Nic Tango
Nikki Keating | On 09, Nov 2013
In the wise word of the most innocent of the Wizard of Oz characters, thereâ€™s no place like home.
Living a life filled with changing landscapes, changing ideals and a changing sound, itâ€™s often the most unlikely of places that one takes refuge in.
Introducing, Nic Tango.
I sat Nic down for a quick chat before his gig.
Lounged out the front of a venue we both knew and loved it was clear Nic was in his element at the Coorparoo Bowls Club.
After regretfully turning down a beer for Rocksober in Rocktober, he assured me that heâ€™d join me for a beer Novebender.
So as families put the youngest to bed and the oldest geared up for a night out, Nic and I talked music, family and tattoos.
CD: Nic, tell me a little about your sound and where you get your influences from?
N: I was heavily influenced by 90â€™s rock like Kurt Cobain and Nirvana. Growing up listening to these guys and following their philosophies and principles got me here in a way.
I never got into music to be famous or rich or any of that sort of stuff. I just wanted to write my life and was lucky enough to do that on a guitar.
CD: Tell me a little about your life.
N: I was born in Brisbane but grew up in Cairns from 12 years old until around 20. I moved back here in 2001.
CD: What prompted the move?
N: Iâ€™ll be honest with you, growing up I hated the idea of the city. I couldnâ€™t stand it and then one day I decided I needed to change and moved here.
I remember when I first got here I thought “man, somethingâ€™s going to happen in this city and Iâ€™m going to make it happen in this city,” and years later something is happening.
Around six years ago when people started singing things I wrote on the end of my bed I decided to get one of my lyrics tattooed to my arm.
Rise Lucifer Rise.
Itâ€™s a bit about religion, a bit about venus but mostly itâ€™s about metaphors and that sat well with me, you know? Itâ€™s not about the devil (laughs).
CD: Whereâ€™s home for you and your family?
N: Well Iâ€™m a young 32.
CD: Iâ€™m sorry, what?
N: (laughs) Yeah man, 32.
(The guy looks 20, I was surprised, sue me)
My home is my family. I was raised in westernised white Australia surrounded by the people I loved who identified with cultures like Aboriginal or Islander.
The more I came to know the rest of my family, the more I realised the Maori culture was a big part of me.
I have a big family and my songs are my messages, for when Iâ€™m gone, for my family to reflect on.
CD: Do you have a favourite venue you play at?
N: Yeah, this place. The Coorparoo Bowls Club are my family too.
There is a woman who works here, Tanya, and she has a word that represents Maoris who identify themselves as Maories even though they werenâ€™t born here.
Tanya is the events manager and Aunty to all at the CBC. A woman who gives love and respect to those who give it to her, I understand without a second thought why this humble little gig is Nicâ€™s home.
Called away for the beginning of his set, family and friends gathered around armed with lyrics Nic wrote at his bedside.
Then the calls for Jack Blackâ€™s â€˜Tributeâ€ started and an entire venue clapped, shouted and laughed their way through the most convincing rendition of the song youâ€™ve ever heard.
â€˜And they played the greatest song in the world. Tribute!â€™
Find more of Nic’s music here.