Ahead of their performance at Country To Country (C2C) I got to speak to Tom Jordan and Mitch Thompson, collectively known as Seaforth.  The lads had flown in overnight and had only landed in the UK at about 9.30 that morning.  You wouldn’t have known from looking at them, they looked as fresh as the preverbal daisy!  I had had my nails done ready for C2C and my nail artist had done an amazing job, I had the Union Jack flag on one thumb nail, the Stars & Stripes flag on the other, I had an Underground sign, a crown, a cactus, but most stunning, the top of the Statute of Liberty.  I say this because as I straightened my question sheet and set the recorder on, the guys noticed my nails and commented on them saying they were amazing!  It really broke the ice!

 

CL : Welcome to the UK, have you been here before?

MT : I came when I was 16 with my school for a soccer tour, we visited some of the stadiums, played in some of the training camps I was too young to appreciate it.  We came over in 2020, we were in Berlin, we played four shows, but we were watching the news and getting worried that things were getting a bit dicey about the rest of the festival.  Then literally at the airport we had a message that we had to come home!  So, we ended up going to the hotel, having dinner at Gordon Ramsay’s restaurant on the water down there somewhere, then packed up and flew back home 4 am the next morning!

TJ : We didn’t see Gordon,

MT : No Gordon didn’t make an appearance unfortunately!

CL : Some of the artists turned round in the air and went back.

Yeah as we landed, some of our buddies were taking off, we were like NOOOOOOO, we are going to be sent straight back!

CL : So frustrating

TJ : Yeah, so sad! But we are here now and it feels like time has just disappeared & we are pumped to be back.

 

 

CL : You are actually well travelled as you are originally from Australia, you then went to Los Angeles.

TJ : I lived in LA for a few years when I was younger, I moved over there when I was 18 before we started Seaforth.  I was doing my own thing and Mitch was doing his own thing, then we started writing together and I moved back to Australia to work on this project with the intent to move to Nashville and make music in Nashville.  So yeah, kind of been a little all over the place, but I haven’t been to the UK before, this is my first time here, I am very excited.

CL : How long are you here for?

TJ : We are here for 10 days.

CL : Oh cool, so you can get some sightseeing done.

TJ: Yeah, we extended the trip by four days, we didn’t get the chance last time, so make the most of it.  We are busy on the days that we are playing, so afterwards we will get the tourist experience.

 

 

CL :  When did you decide that you had to make the States your permanent home?

TJ : It was the goal from Day 1, but it is weird because it didn’t become apparent it was going to happen until the second trip we made out there, it was always the goal.  I had to make a couple of trips, but I just fell in love with it immediately.  We were just writing songs, saving up money playing little gigs back in Australia, weddings, pub gigs, to save up to come out.  Spend it all, come home broke and start the whole process again!  But then it was this is my life now, this is what we want to do.  It comes up a lot in interviews, but Keith Urban was a big influence in the beginning because he was Australian and he had moved to Nashville and was paving his way there.  It was evident in Australia, we were inspired by that and wanted to do that and follow in his footsteps.  Now you have got Keith and Morgan Evans as well, we are trying to do something along those lines, but there is so much talent in Australia.  There is a little community of Australians in Nashville now it is really cool.

CL :  That is one of my questions further down, are you reading ahead?

MT : We can read upside down, it is another one of our talents!

 

 

CL : You have known each other basically since you were in nappies, about three years old?

MT : Yeah, Tom never got out of them!  Three years old we went to Seaforth Pre School.

CL : Were you actually friends at that age or was it that you were just in the same school together?

MT : I think the first playdate was before we went to middle school.

TJ : I have videos of us at my house singing when we were literally six years old, singing Maroon 5, we might have been eight, maybe older, I dunno, but we were young!

MT : Yeah, it was a long time

TJ : Yeah, a long time to hate someone!

MT : I definitely stole Pokemon cards of his when we were before school age, that is one of my fondest memories.

TJ : Woahhhhhh

MT ; Yeah, I remember stealing one!

 

At this stage I start to think we are going to break out into fisticuffs!!  This was certainly a revelation to Tom!  I decided best course of action, ask another question, get off this touchy subject!

 

 

CL :  So you were singing together from a young age, you kind of just followed a natural path?

MT : Yeah, we were like the two singers of our High School, Tom started a little before me.  At that time, he inspired me a lot to want to be able to sing and play guitar.  I had always sung, but I hadn’t played the guitar.  We then had this friendly rivalry all through school.  We played together for teacher parent events, cocktail parties, whatever the school was putting on, they would put us both on and we would sing.  We didn’t start writing though until we were about 19, then it was pretty much all go.

 

 

CL :  What do you miss the most about home?

TJ : A lot, we went back home just recently, there is nothing like family and just being home with family, Lockdown really proved that. After C2C 2020, we went back to Nashville, we had this dicey moment where we could have gone back to Australia but we would have sacrificed being in the US working and creating to be with family.  We ended up staying which lead to us making the new music that we are putting out now, which is a blessing, but we didn’t get to see our family for two years.  That to me has been the hardest part.

MT : I agree, family would be top.  We went home this Christmas, that was so good!

 

 

CL : On the flip side of that, what do you love the most about Nashville?

TJ : For me it is the community and being surrounded by people all doing the same sort of thing, it drives you and inspires you to do better.  That is what I noticed on the first trip, you need to keep up or be left behind.  It is an inspiring town, everyone is striving for the same goals and supporting each other, it is the special unique thing about it, there is nothing like I have experienced living back home.

MT : It is very supportive too, all the creatives are supportive, everyone is lifting each other up.  We were writing with people early on that we never would have dreamed we would be working with.  So from the get go we felt very comfortable there

 

 

CL : Now is my question about Australia!  You have already mentioned Keith Urban and Morgan Evans.  So there is a community over there?

TJ : There is a lot of amazing talent over there, I think the thing about Australia is that it is so far from the rest of the world that I feel like Nashville is a giant leap, and it is, it is a massive leap.  There are more and more people, like Country music friends, that are coming over, visiting, staying and writing.  It is really cool as there is so much talent down there and a lot of artists who crush it in the industry down there, so Australia is starting to get more of a reputation in Nashville which is really cool.  Keith Urban definitely paved the way, people looked at him and thought may be we do have a shot, maybe we should try and do that.  It was our thing from the beginning, we are not going to know unless we just do it.

MT : It is a cool thing, I doubt that you would interview a Country musician in Australia that wouldn’t bring him up.  It is the legacy he has.

 

 

CL : To me, your music sound very much like another act from Nashville, do you mind being compared/likened to other acts or would you rather be unique?

MT : Now let me think, who could it be … Would it be a D and a S?

CL : Ahh .. yup!

Laughs

MT : Darius Sucker!  I knew it!

TJ : I think everybody gets comparisons to begin with and I think for us maybe the comparison is based on us not having put out a whole lot of music at this point.  We have put out 9 or ten songs, but it has been sporadic. I feel like we get compared to certain artists but it is always a compliment because the people we are getting compared to.

CL : Yeah, Dan & Shay are a fairly big act.

MT : Yeah, they are, they are massive!

TJ : They are and they are great and I get it but at the same time I feel like the new music that we are putting out is really paving our own lane within the genre which is what we have always wanted to do because our influences are broader.  Being from Australia it is a more international approach to Country music because we were not born and raised in Georgia or Alabama.  I think as we release more music, hopefully people will start to realise our own identity.  We are very excited to put more music out.

 

 

CL : We have touched on collaborations, you collaborated with Mitchell Tenpenny on ‘Anything She Says’, did you enjoy that?

MT : Oh loved it!

TJ : We became really good friends with Mitchell, we were on tour with him, he took us on our first tour of the US.  We wrote that song with him, initially we were trying to write it for him and he was trying to write it for us to record!   Then it came to a point where he said alright I am doing it but lets do it together.  That song was amazing for us, it is still currently our highest streamed song!

 

 

CL : Do you have plans to collaborate with anyone else at the moment?

MT ; Yes we do!

TJ: We have people in mind.  Obviously, we have just had ‘Good Beer’ come out with Jordan Davis, which is super exciting.  We love Jordan, he is a legend.  I feel like there is so much talent in Nashville, there is a song on the EP we are putting out that has a collaboration on it that I think is the next song coming out.  It is a little left of centre, but it is fun.  It is a throwback, we are really excited about it!

CL : Don’t give away too many details will you!

Laughs!

MT : Yeah, we might have said too much!

 

CL : Coming back to Lockdown, did you, did you write much during Lockdown?

TJ : Honestly the first four months I think we did not, at all.  Initially when we got back from the UK we were thinking we would have two weeks of this and then we will be back to normal, so we kind of took it as a vacation and we were doing lots of random stuff, like challenging each other to make remakes of random classic songs, it was kind of weird.  Then we had four months of nothing when it really set in!  It wasn’t until the end of the year when we started just hanging out with some of our new friends that we had met through random activities like soccer and we started writing again.  At the end of October we got in with our buddy Rocky Block and we wrote four songs which are on our new EP.  We hit this new stride, we wanted to start writing things that would get us out of the dark year that we had had and put us in a different place.  We progressed as people, as writers and as Seaforth.  In that moment we started writing the new Seaforth, our next project.  It was a big break, but we ended up getting on a big roll.

 

 

CL : When you are songwriting, when do your best ideas come to you?

MT : Depends!  I have had ideas in the shower, you are singing in the shower and you start humming something else.  We are super collaborative and always have been, so I think a lot of our ideas stem from not jokes, but we will mess around with things that are a little left of centre sound wise and production wise.

TJ : Often it is from failing at something else, starting an idea, over thinking it and digging it into the ground, we are lets scrap this and do something else.  You don’t care at that point and you start on something else.  Then all of a sudden you are like oh wait, that is what we were searching for!

 

CL : One of my questions is Stetson or Ball cap, but that is obvious as Tom you are wearing a Stetson!

MT : Yaahay!!  BALL CAPS!

TJ : I think there is a time and a place for both!  We were walking round by the hotel in London, I feel like wearing a Stetson in London is rare?

CL : It won’t be this weekend, no!

TJ : I like it, I like a Stetson, I like a ball cap, it just depends on the occasion.

 

 

CL : Did you know about C2C before you were asked to perform here in 2020?

TJ : We heard about when it was initially going to come to Australia.  We were excited by the idea of it, we thought it would be amazing, a chance for us to play in the UK.  We were do people listen to Country music over there?  Is that a thing?  We were pleasantly surprised that it is!  Honestly from Day 1 when we heard about it, we were hitting our management and booking agent up saying to them to do whatever they could to get us over here.  UK has always been a dream of ours, we want to come over here and do a tour of our own stuff.

MT : We are very committed to being present over here so this is the first real chance that we have had to come and do this.  We feel that after this trip and this weekend we will keep continuing to coming back inside and outside of the festival.

CL : As a Country music fan, this is great news and I am really happy to hear it.

TJ : We saw in Berlin when we played there two years ago, the crowds were unbelievable!  The crowds in the US are unbelievable, the crowds that we have played to all around have been great.  We have heard the UK is just different, they are so attentive and everyone really appreciates the story, the lyrics and the music.  The Berlin shows were incredible, the crowds were incredible, so we were so excited to come here and experience it here as well.

CL : I think the difference with the UK audience, we listen to the album, it is not just the radio.  You will play a song from the album or EP and we will sing it back to you.

MT : This is what we are really excited about.

TJ : It is exciting for us, we have no idea what to expect, we could have a couple of people sing our songs, no-one singing it, more than a couple singing it.  It is very exciting!

MT : For sure!

 

 

CL : What is the best/worst piece of advice you have ever been given?

TJ : Aw man!  Errrm ..

MT : The best piece of advice, just do it, which is also the worst piece of advice!

 

  

CL : Final question – Cartoon character for one day, who would you be?

MT : Peter Griffin from Family Guy, actually no, I wouldn’t want to be him, he is just prone to trouble!  I just find him very funny!  Yes, I would be him!

CL : Final answer?

MT : Yes, final answer!

TJ : Lightning McQueen from Cars.

MT : Wait, is that even a cartoon?

TJ : Yeah, CARtoon!  CARtoon!!

MT : Peter Griffin and Lightning McQueen!  That would be an interesting day!

 

CL : Thank you so much for your time, enjoy your shows and enjoy your time in the UK!

 

 

 

 

 

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