I started listening to Björk’s music when I was in high school, hearing it for the first time on a visit to my older sister’s university. Some students were playing her album Debut while they were drawing a chalk mural on a pavement. I remember it clearly: her unique voice and distinct way of looking at the world captured me then and there. I’d never heard anything like it before. Childlike and worldly all at once, Björk’s music and perspective were fresh and exhilarating. From there, I followed her every move; I guess you would say I became a devotee. Her music has carried me across some varied landscapes, but I still return to songs such as “All Is Full of Love”, “Bachelorette” and “Hunter” among many others to draw strength in times of creative or personal drought. I think Björk is the most original voice of my generation, and the risks she has taken with her music, the breadth of what she has done and her uncompromising spirit never fail to inspire me.
HOLLY THROSBY & SALLY SELTMANN (Seeker Lover Keeper Bandmates)
I first met Holly in about 2003, after she played a show at The Basement in Sydney. I met Sally not long after, when we did one of those “Singers To Watch” photo shoots that you do when you’re younger! We were all from Sydney and put out our first albums around the same time, so we were definitely aware of each other. One memorable night, we ended up at The Townie [Town Hall Hotel] in Newtown. We discovered we had a lot in common and gushed a little over each other’s music. Not long after, we emailed about the idea of touring and joked about starting a “girl group”. We eventually agreed we would do it for real – and Sally offered the name Seeker Lover Keeper. A few years later, we made an album and released it in 2011. I discovered so much about myself and Holly and Sally through the experience of recording and touring together. We had to lay ourselves bare and that was often confronting, coming from working on things as a solo artist. I’ve found a great deal of understanding and a sense of solidarity with Holly and Sally, which has been really important to me over the years. We have all since had children, and written books and albums, so it has been interesting to see how far we’ve all come working on a new album together last year.
JESSICA CHAPNIK KAHN
I’ve known Jess since I was 12. I remember seeing her from across the room for the first time at Christian Life Centre [now Hillsong] in Sydney. Her family reminded me of my own: she was one of two daughters of a similar age to my sister and me, and we all looked shy in this massive, noisy, chaotic Pentecostal church. I gathered courage to say hi and we became friends. We both wanted to be actresses and would write each other letters with Bible quotes and talk about NIDA and boys. When my family left the church when I was about 17, we lost contact. Then at 21, we were thrown together in a startling display of serendipity when we both enrolled in the same university course at the same time on the exact same day. We quickly rekindled our friendship – often at the uni bar! – and sought to make sense of our religious upbringing and rid ourselves of the baggage that came with that, since we’d both left it behind. Two years into our degrees, my mum died. I often wonder what I would have done without Jess’ friendship at that point. She guided me through that difficult time so graciously and she has done so through countless other tough points in my life. We have come in and out of each other’s lives over the years, but something stronger than both of us keeps pulling us back together.
Seeker Lover Keeper’s new album 'Wild Seeds' is out August 9 via Liberation Records.
This article originally appeared in the September issue of marie claire Australia.