Sarah McLeod is one human dynamo. Carving out a highly successful music career - on her terms - "Whatever it is you have, you just roll with that with reckless abandon", Sarah McLeod's a self-made, unapologetically unique, home-grown rock star. Upon chatting with her, a humbling opportunity to absorb the vast wisdom and brilliant insights of this well-known Aussie icon. The first things to strike me about this unassuming powerhouse, being how extremely bright, knowledgeable, and quick-witted she is. But besides being a walking encyclopaedia of everything rock, plus the entire music industry, she's also a warm, charming, personable human being. Sarah, kindly indulging my curiosity of her and The Superjesus' inner workings and origins, with well-articulated, unflinchingly blunt responses in our interview.
"When I get excited about something, I give it everything I've got."
Sarah leapt into her career after an inspiring vacation to Bali, where she toured the joint performing with a local band. Shortly thereafter, launching her first band, 'Hell's Kitchen' - Gordon Ramsay, eat your heart out. Sarah, elucidating, "I learnt on the job"; boldly gatecrashing the industry with minimal experience; hitting the ground running. Gradually expanding her capacity and musical artistry by doing - "My cousin taught me a couple of chords" - and that's about it! Sarah, fiddling with her guitar for three mere months, developing her range by learning cover songs, then putting the pedal to the metal. Essentially an autodidact, opting to "learn it from within". But by initiating a career in music, sacrificing other ambitions - "Back then I really didn't know who I was. It took me a long time to know who I wanted to be, I wanted to be a businesswoman, only because I was obsessed with Alex Keaton in Family Ties...And then I found rock n' roll, and I went f... Alex".
After some dithering, The Superjesus are back - with a commemorative album release of their 1998 'Sumo'. Sarah commenting, "The upcoming album includes a bunch of tracks recorded at Live at the Wireless... This includes a very cool cover of Kylie Minogue's 'Confide in Me'... The current lineup sounds mighty". And mighty it is. So much so, these classics still resonate. Deeply. And that's because "they were just weird and different. I guess twenty years later, people are still listening them going - 'that's still weird and different'." Sarah explaining, "They're a succession of complex parts...Strange amalgam of influences". Sarah's tendency toward pop, combined with her fellow members' heavier penchant, producing an "interesting take on the songs". The band's passion, obvious - "What triggered us to come back was just that we missed each other". Upon interrogating Sarah as to whether she'll stick around, she left me with, "Each tour we do it's like a tiny little step in the direction of longevity."