Courtney Marie Andrews

By Ben Doy

Courtney Marie Andrews has landed in New Zealand, and set to play two concerts this week with Joe Pug - tonight at San Fran in Wellington (Wed July 19) and tomorrow night at The Tuning Fork in Auckland (Thu July 20). 

I had a quick chat over the phone last night with Courtney, shortly before she headed out to play her last Australian show in Melbourne.  

Who were your early influences? 

I started out listening to punk music when I was super young, and that sort of transformed into more indie songwriter music; people like Elliott Smith. And that sort of transformed into listening to older songwriters like Bob Dylan and John Prine. 

What was it like growing up in Arizona? 

It was interesting. In Arizona, especially Phoenix, it didn’t have a very thriving music scene. When I started out this combustion of new stuff was happening and started getting some cooler venues around town. It was a very small music scene and very tight knit. It was great to grow up with that. 

How did Jimmy Eat World discover you? 

I’d been playing around Phoenix for a few years when I was a teenager, and had already released three records. The lead singer of Jimmy Eat World was looking for a back up singer and he asked me to come do a solo show with him. So I sang with him and then that led to me singing with him on the record, and then they asked me to go on the tour with them… a world tour. Very nice guys to tour with. 

Your latest album release was Honest Life. Where did you record the album? 

I recorded it in Seattle, but I wrote a lot of the songs when I was in Belgium and also when I was in Washington state. 

Was it hard making a shortlist for the songs to appear on the recording? 

You know, those were the ten songs that I wrote… I maybe had one or two songs that didn’t make it on Honest Life. But I felt like those songs just naturally belonged together. Those ten songs were it for me. 

Sometimes it doesn’t end up like that, but for Honest Life it did. 

How long did the album take to make? 

It was about six months of writing and we recorded the record in a very very short amount of time. It was like four days we recorded the entire record. A lot of the tracks were live in the studio with minimal overdubs, so it sounds very natural and raw. 

You’re currently touring with Joe Pug. What is Joe like to tour with? 

He’s great, easy! I’ve lucked out with my touring years, most people that I’ve toured with are pros - all great people. 

What can we expect from your set? 

You’ll get to experience people who can play their instruments well with good songs. They’ll be very intimate evening’s. You can cosy up and keep warm from the cold weather (laughs). 

Will you have time to have a look around the country, or will it be straight back on the plane again? 

You know it might just be bang bang then back on the plane. We fly in to Wellington on the day, then fly to Auckland. I’ve heard so many things about how beautiful it is, so I hope to have a proper look around one day soon. 

Following the NZ shows, what plans do you have for the rest of 2017? 

I’m doing quite a bit of touring and will be recording my next record as well. Honest Life came out about a year ago, so it’s about time to start making a new one. 

Joe Pug with special guest Courtney Marie Andrews

Wednesday 19th July: San Fran, Wellington 
Thursday 20th July: The Tuning Fork, Auckland

 Tickets via Ticketmaster