A Day in the Life: Social Distancing with Poison Oak


James - vocals: Social distancing has been pretty easy here in North Queensland, Australia. The pandemic hit, we had five weeks of quarantine and then we were pretty much let back onto the streets. The warm heat and the city Townsville is pretty spread apart, which are bad conditions for any virus to stick around for long.

While we were in lockdown in 2020 (April - May), we spent a lot of time writing; most of our latest EP was written during the lockdown. It gave us the time to get our repertoire together without the pressure of live shows. I would wake up, work on a song, get an idea down, maybe a guitar track and some vocals, send it off to the band, they would add their part, etc. and I would work on it some more.

I also had a lot of time to listen to more music and started listening to another Aussie band called The Vanns. I would look into their song structures and different concepts and ideas they were using as they had a good mix of traditional rock and modern indie.

I also started to play Age of Empires II. I hadn’t really played computer games since I was a teenager and I kind of forgot how good it was. I usually kept myself so busy with sports, music and work. I forget that having some down time is quite beneficial and sometimes can make you put things into perspective.

All in all, we’ve been lucky with the pandemic with where we live. Our main focus is writing and recording music and if anything, COVID has provided us with extra time to focus on writing and putting our songs together. I know a lot of people out there are struggling in the music business, especially with the fact that they can’t play gigs. However, everyone in Poison Oak works full-time with the government and we didn’t lose any work when the pandemic hit.

Now, here in Aus, up in North Queensland, we’re pretty much back to normal. We’ve started to play some shows. The streets are bustling and people are sweating in beer gardens from North Queensland humidity.

So, a day in the life of Poison Oak hasn’t really changed. We rehearse on the weekends, we share ideas during the week... I guess it could be considered a luxury in comparison with what is happening with the rest of the world.

While practicing social distancing, listen to our EP, "1996":