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Meet Pat Davern. The award-winning musician and guitarist in iconic Australian band, Grinspoon, Pat is currently touring to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the bands’ debut album ‘Guide to Better Living’. Splitting his time between touring, running his Bangalow store ‘The Finders Club’ with partner Katya, Pat took some time out to chat to Children of the Tribe about his growing family, his successful venture into writing for children and all things fatherhood.
Pat, you’re currently touring. What’s it like being on the road, older, wiser and a soon-to-be Dad of two?
Being back on the road has been a great! After a 5 year break we felt it was time to go out and play some shows, and what better way than to celebrate the 20th anniversary of our debut album. It feels great to be playing to music again with my band mates. We’ve been such a big part of each other’s lives with so many shared experiences. It’s a bit like a footy team for uncoordinated 40+ year old man-children. There’s a lot to love about getting the opportunity to re-live your 20’s, but with added bonus of bad backs and sore knees!
But in all seriousness it’s hard being away from my family for such long periods of time. I really miss them and get debilitating bouts of homesickness. I’m lucky that Katya is so understanding. She’s my rock and I’d be useless without her.
Twenty years on, what advice would you give to your 1997 self?
Go easy on the cheese platter; cholesterol can catch up with you! I’d really just say take the time to look around you. You’re having some amazing experiences and there’s no need to rush through them. Also to try and look after yourself more, if you’re going to wait till you’re 40 to have kids, you need to conserve some of that energy!
Katya, you and Pat have settled in Bangalow and last year saw you open your store ‘The Finders Club’. It seems to have found a real niche with its offering for men. Tell us about the inspiration and how it came to be?
We wanted to create a space for men to feel comfortable in; somewhere they were able to buy everything they need. I have loved creating a space for men to come and be surrounded by ‘guy stuff’. It’s also nice for women to come and find so many things to spoil the men in their life, be it vinyl, sunnies, clothes, books, knives or the best whisky glass in the world!
You have a four year old daughter Frankie, and another bub on the way. What has been the most surprising thing about becoming a Dad?
I think the most surprising thing is how quickly your life changes, and how easy it was to adapt. I can’t imagine my life without Katya & Frankie. I was a different person before they came along, and it’s definitely been my greatest life experience.
Which of your characteristics would you most like your children to inherit?
Wow! There are definitely some characteristics I hope she doesn’t inherit! But I hope that she has the ability to follow her dreams, be creative and fun, and be able to laugh at herself. I think they’re qualities I strive for in myself.
A couple of years ago you penned the children’s book and album ‘Alexander the Elephant in Zanzibar’ and created an accompanying album. It is now being looked at for a television series. What’s it like to see this project so well received?
It’s been an amazing journey. It started off with me wanting to write a children’s musical. I had an idea and approached ABC music about producing it with me. They loved the idea and I started working away at it. From there I was introduced to Martin Chatterton who ended up authoring it with me and illustrating the book. I wrote all the songs and recorded them with some well-known Australian artists. From there its been optioned for a TV series, a stage production is in the works, and more stories are being developed. It’s been an amazing ride!
You’re having a big and busy year and with so much going on, how do you like to recharge the batteries?
We’re off to Noosa for a week when the tour finally ends, which is our first family holiday for a long time!
Frankie wears the Jedda Maxi Dress from our Upcoming collection: Lost Desert SS17, available in November.