Bubbling With Panache
I’m not quite sure if it’s a champagne lifestyle but singer-songwriter and guitarist DANIEL CHAMPAGNE is certainly living the dream. After finishing high school four years ago Daniel thought he would head out on the road with his guitar for a month or so and see how things went. He had a few gigs booked and a few spots at festivals to keep him busy. But, as they do, one thing led to another and as Daniel explains, “You play a few gigs and meet a few people at all the different festivals. You keep doing it and then a year later you’re playing overseas and you’re going to heaps of different countries.”
Is it really that simple? Well, probably not. But Daniel’s approach to life certainly has a simple elegance to it. Daniel’s gigs are just him and his guitar, playing the music he writes and whatever else he wants to play. Notoriously bad at describing his music, he tells me it is “The music you can play when you’ve just got a guitar and you’re singing and you’re in control. You can play a blues song one minute, an old country song the next, a jazz song the next… then Beyoncé’s latest hit the next!”
Daniel didn’t always dream of being a musician but it was the thing he enjoyed doing most growing up so he thought he’d give it a try. Daniel’s life is now comprised of gigs, aeroplanes, hotel rooms and writing songs – and he loves it. He’s addicted to performing and basically hasn’t stopped touring since leaving school. “There hasn’t been a good reason to, and there are plenty of good reasons for me to keep going because it’s a lot of fun and I’m getting a lot out of it at this stage.”
When asked if it’s difficult to find time to write with such a busy schedule, he answers, “Not really. You’re only ever playing one or two hours a night so there’s a lot of dead time. If you make it a priority there is plenty of time to write.”
So there you have it. Life according to Daniel: do what you love, prioritise what is important and give things a go because you never know where it might lead.
Canberra almost has a claim on Daniel; his sister and grandparents live here and he’s got friends going to uni here. He loves playing at The Front – “I’ve been playing at The Front heaps and heaps, I really love the room and it always works” – so catch him while we have this spurious claim on him because his future plans will probably see him spending more and more time in the US.
Catch him while you can on Thursday June 14 at The Front Café and Gallery, where he’ll be playing alongside triple j unearthed artist Sui Zhen as part of her debut album launch tour.