In November last year hot on the heels of the release of their acclaimed second album “Rainbows in Space” Australia’s The Bennies took their high energy shows across 5 cities in China. In Shanghai they turned 696 in to a giant bouncy castle and both Pairs’ Xiao Zhong and Live Beijing Music’s Will rated their shows amongst their best of the year. In between they’ve been around Australia again, across the Tasman to New Zealand and picked up numerous accolades along the way including being tipped as being one of the bands that will shape the sound of 2014.
They’re bringing their skate-punk/ska/reggae fuelled party anthems back to China for 10 dates this month including Beijing and Shanghai Midi plus two more shows in Shanghai at Harleys and 696 (details below).
We asked Goushen’s Lenz to throw a few questions at bass player Craig about returning to China, Midi and erm, downhill skiing.
Welcome back to China, how did time here go? Anything interesting to share? Anything have to do this time?
Thanks Lenz, we're really happy to be coming back to China!! Last time was great, lots of great beer and people!! This time we want to go back to Mr. X in Shanghai!
Is it true the reason you come back to China is because Chinese girls much hotter than Australian girls?
Photo by Julia Lay and Tone Deaf
Both Shanghai and Beijing people think you guys are the nicest guys ever, heard one of you even invented a way of giving tip under the table after drinking baijiu. Want to explain little bit more about that?
We love to have a good time as a band, and sometimes we have too much fun. Last time we were in China our drummer Dave had a little too much baijiu and ended up spewing under the table at a restaurant! He felt so bad he left some money in the spew as a tip....I think he's keen to come back and drink even more baijiu this time!!
Had lots Chinese food, isn't it awesome? Isn't Yunnan food are the best?
All the food we had in China was so good!! Yunnan food and Peking duck were our favourites!!
Last time when we had Yunnan food together I try to tell you one dish was bugs but you guys knew it wasn't, because you guys eat bugs all the time. So, what type of bugs you guys normally eat?
Hahahaha we normally have roaches :)
You guys must have answered thousands times but still how you got the name The Bennies?
We used to be called 'Madonna', but unfortunately that name was already taken. So, we wrote a list of new names and The Bennies was the best of the worst!!
I heard that Bowie was a national downhill hill mogul skier. What happened, why you change your professional career?
Bowie is an amazing skiier, and also a very good piano player!! He decided to change careers because there was not enough money in skiing. Unfortunately there is even less money in music!! Hahahah
How can you manage to support your life when you are always touring. In last 8 months you've been around Australia, to Japan, China, New Zealand, around Australia again and now back to China. Do you love hotel rooms?
Hahahah yeah it’s been pretty busy, but we all love playing music so much, it’s all we want to do. We are very lucky to meet great people like yourself and John that allow us to come back to China and party! We all have part time jobs to pay rent, and the rest of the time we do what we love - play music!
You guys did a “will swap weed for merch” tour. How did that one go?
Hahahah we heard that it went great, but our memories of the tour are a little hazy....
You have really energetic performance; last time the kids that haven’t ever been to live show jumping up and down. Are you looking forward to making thousands of kids jumping around at Midi?
It will be a dream come true to play at Midi festival!! We're gonna bring hyper energy so we hope all the kids are ready to party hard!!
Saturday April 19th @ Harleys with Beijing’s Bedstars, Round Eye and Hujiahuwei
Sunday April 20th @ 696 (free afternoon show) with Bedstars, Round Eye and Wheel of Fortune
Saturday April 26th @ Midi