Interview: Get to Know Lester The Fierce
The excellent Lester The Fierce releases her brand-spanking new, self-titled EP next week and also ventures on tour, supporting Ngaiire. We wanted to discover more about her, so here she is, in her own words:
Lester The Fierce is me as a children’s book hero somewhere in a forest – it’s also me as a 27-year-old musician, Anita Lester. I’m little but I have big hair (think Fran Drescher without the tease), I talk but I’m shy, I have big eyes but they are always half shut from my heavy eye lids, I am part crystals and part whiskey. I feel pretty empty without music and art. I love too quickly.
The new EP is a bit of an experiment. It’s got a little 90’s, a little 60’s and a little now. Lyrically it’s more straightforward, but still making an effort to create strong imagery. Howl, my lead single (video, above) is about that feeling you get when you can’t speak what you think – kind of like when you can’t run in a dream. Bird is about feeling the limitations of your body. Colours is about being in love with someone you don’t want to be in love with anymore. January is about a one night stand. It was one of the most romantic nights I’ve had mixed with one of my less pleasant sexual experiences. And then in true morning-after fashion (but not mentioned in the song), we ate Vegemite on toast and called it a day. As an appropriate follow up, Volcano is about sex.
I just realised the EP is kind of chronological states of mourning – Frustration, depression, love, lust, sex.
The upcoming tour will be interesting/fun/scary/exciting. Playing live is such a highlight of this thing we silly musicians choose to do. Ngaiire is a stone cold fox and I’m really looking forward to playing around the country with her. Performance wise, I feel like my background in cabaret comes through a bit, but it’s also very identifiably rock/pop. I’m playing solo for a few of the smaller shows. This always brings up happy/embarrassing memories of a very shaky teenage me playing open mic nights with chunky biker dudes and smelly hippy types at my local.
I spend too much time… oh god. Doing lots of things. One for sure is watching Ru Paul’s Drag Race. It’s like one of those Top Model franchise shows, but for Drag Queens. I also spend WAAAAY too much time listening to This American Life. I fucking love Ira Glass. I spend too much time awake. I find night-time a little overwhelming sometimes and because of that, I have some good old fashion insomnia. I spend too much time worrying about getting some sort of stomach virus. I spend too much time being superstitious in general. I think they call that neurosis. I probably spend too much time with the women in my family… but don’t tell them, because they’ll probably cast some witchy spell on me.
Melbourne is my home. I wasn’t born here, but it’s the foundation for everything I’ve loved. The pensive air, the rain, the suburbs, the Japanese food, the music scene, the privacy, my family, memories of my father, my friends, old cinemas, big public gardens in the summer, the smell of Jasmine. I’ve lived in so many different cities around the world, but I just love Melbourne. Whenever I think I’ve had enough, something else surprises me.
In the future I’d like to still be learning. I’d like to still be in in love. I’d like my family to be healthy and living their lives. I’d generally like to be Leonard Cohen.
On a musical level, I’d love to have a break… not rest, but as in a break through the impenetrable wall that is the music scene we all so furiously fight for. It’s not the be-all-end-all, but it’d be vindicating for my stupid little ego. I’m in the process of writing my first album. I can’t fucking wait.
It might surprise people to learn that I am a bit of a loner. I’m a children’s book illustrator. I studied film at university. I have been teaching art to kids and teenagers for almost 10 years. I have a huge gap between my big and second toe – I can pick up way too many things with my feet. I used to want to be a Shakespearean actor. I’m allergic to Beetroot juice and cabbage. I have a genuine, real-life, monobrow if un-plucked and my nickname at school was Mustachio.
If you’re in Aus, you can check out Lester The Fierce in support of Ngaiire at the following venues:
12 SEP, OXFORD ART FACTORY, SYDNEY // 14 SEP, REPUBLIC BAR, HOBART // 15 SEP, FRESH ON CHARLES, LAUNCESTON // 19 SEP, TRANSIT BAR, CANBERRA // 20 SEP BAHA TACOS, RYE // 21 SEP, NORTHCOTE SOCIAL CLUB, MELBOURNE // 27 SEP, THE SMALL BALLROOM, NEWCASTLE // 28 SEP, HERITAGE HOTEL, BULLI // 3 OCT, BRISBANE MULTICULTURAL ARTS CENTRE // 4 OCT, SOLBAR, SUNSHINE COAST // 5 OCT, THE NORTHERN HOTEL, BYRON BAY //12 OCT, JIVE, ADELAIDE