OFFICE — Where are you right now?
ALDOUS HARDING — I’m so glad you asked. I’m about a two-hour drive out of Auckland City at a beach house. I’m close to the sea for the first time in ages, it’s really nice.
O — It’s your first time back in New Zealand in a while?
AH — I’ve been gone for the last four months, then I leave again on Sunday until the end of November.
O — That’ s a crazy thing about touring . Seeing your year laid out in front of you.
AH — It looks easy enough on paper.
O — Do you still call New Zealand home? Apart from all your travel, I saw that you’d lived in Australia.
AH — Australia was a long time ago, New Zealand’s home for now. I’ll be coming back for Christmas and maybe go to Fiji for the New Year. I’ve never been to any of the islands. After that I’ll probably look at LA, or maybe Amsterdam or London. I’m not sure. It’s just easier to be closer when I’m touring. It’s not nice being away from my family , but they understand.
O — Are there any particular artists you feel close with in New Zealand?
AH — I’m pretty tight with Nadia Reid, who I grew up with. I’m close with Marlon Williams from Lyttelton. I’m a big fan of Tiny Ruins records, and also my best friend Flora Knight, who plays old-time fiddle and guitar.
O — I wanted to ask you about your songwriting process, but instead of asking you what the songs are about, I’m curious if where you’re from has a strong impact on your songs and why you write them?
AH — I don’t feel like New Zealand had a lot to do with it, but maybe a feeling of being isolated, coming from a town and growing up in the country for a lot of it, I was kind of at the mercy of that. There’s no record store in Geraldine, and the times when I was interested in that kind of stuff, I didn’t have any money. I didn’t have a laptop. I guess I was isolated, I don’t know.