Unpacking the Surf Coast music scene

December 12, 2019 BY

Jasper Jolley of Ocean Grove band Bones and Jones. Photo: KATEY SHEARER PHOTOGRAPHY

A budding visual storyteller from Cape Otway recently completed a project which saw her interview and photograph 10 Surf Coast musicians.

Katey Shearer spent about four months discovering talent from around the region all the while attending local gigs to get a sense of their sound and performance energy.

Having met and befriended folk musician Tommy Castles a year ago, Katey was inspired to shed light on the talented people from Torquay and neighbouring surf towns who often fly under the radar.

“I love music and I sort of stepped into that world (live shows) a bit and saw there are some really talented musicians out there,” she said.

“I wanted to go into as much depth as I could and try and find musicians that I wanted to meet or had heard of. It took a bit longer than expected.

“I guess they deserve a bit more recognition than they get. I wanted to write about how they came about as a musician so they could have their story told.”

Katey, who took up photography just over 12 months ago, sat down with Chris Hay, Hannah, Jasmin Adria, Jesse Stanley, Finnigan August, Emily Suckling, Jack, Libby Steel, Tommy Castles and Jasper Jolley.

She said the biggest commonality she found between the 10 artists was their shared determination to make good music rather than to achieve fame.

“They’re all pretty laid back; most of them grew up on the Surf Coast. Most were a bit more nonchalant with their career ideas… they’re very driven but kind of more passionate about music itself than getting fame which was quite beautiful.”

The self-taught photographer shared each portrait on her website along with a blog post detailing the artist’s journey to music.

Her final blog in the “Surf Coast Muso Harmony” project was on Jasper Jolley, who she described as a shadow of Bob Dylan.

Katey’s next project will spotlight her love of surfing as she intends to meet local surfers who have ridden swell on the Surf Coast since they first paddled out.

To read all 10 posts, head to kateyshearerphotography.com or follow facebook.com/kateyshearerphotography and @kateyshearer on Facebook and Instagram.