Walking down the corridors of the IONA Performing Arts Centre your ears are often delighted to hear the fine sounds of a pianist in practice, or a chamber choir in harmony. On Thursday afternoons, however, you will be greeted with a different beat, a “90s grunge rock” beat.
Goodbye Flowers is a four-piece rock band founded by a group of Year 11 students who were curious to see the music program here at SCAS take on something new.
“There is a lot of orthodox music here at SCAS, we have our concert bands, our stage band is more funk, but there was no rock,” explains lead vocalist and guitarist Michael Montgomery.
So, Michael and his bandmates Nicholas Clarke, Matthew Hingston and Jordan Mitchley approached Director of Performing Arts, Mark Brown to start a rock band. Mark took a chance on the boys and now they are set to compete in the regional heat of Rockfest at Camden Haven High School.
Rockfest is a nationwide competition that gives hundreds of students the opportunity to perform for large audiences comprised of their peers, friends and teachers. 2018 is the first year for a regional heat to be held in the Mid North Coast.
“It’s the first year of the competition in the area so we don’t know the standard of the bands we are going up against but we are going in confident,” says guitarist Nicholas Clarke.
If successful at the regional heat, Goodbye Flowers will have the opportunity to compete at the national grand final held in Victoria. The event has drawn a high-profile judging panel including singer-guitarist for rock band Grinspoon, Phil Jamieson.
However, most attractive for the boys is the musical goodies up grabs as Rockfest is sponsored by some of the most recognised music brands globally such as Fender and D’Addario.
“The winner of one of the categories at nationals will be endorsed by Fender for a year which is exciting,” says Michael.
While Rockfest is one of the band’s bigger gigs, Goodbye Flowers is excited to perform around SCAS with their sights set on a slot in the Columba Day line-up.
The boys’ favourite part of being in a rock band is the chance to make music with their friends. “A lot of people want to play rock but they often can’t at school. We now have that opportunity and we are just having fun,” says Michael.
The SCAS community wishes Goodbye Flowers the best of luck at Rockfest on the 22nd of May.