Kevin Parker: “I woke up and saw that the sky was full of smoke”

Kevin Parker: "I woke up and saw that the sky was full of smoke"


My father died ten years ago, but sometimes I still meet him in my dreams. It is not that we are exchanging views, he is just there. When I started music, my father warned me about the music industry. He was friends with many musicians, most of whom were guys who played in cover bands night after night. He had come to believe that music loses its magic when money and the daily struggle to survive come into play.

At that time my father had no idea that one day my music would be successful. He definitely wanted to prevent me from losing the joy of music. He just barely noticed the beginning of my career, but unfortunately he didn’t live long enough to see that despite the success, I still kept some of the magic of music.

I once read that you have hundreds of dreams every night but remember very few of them. Although I believe that in a sealed-off part of our brain, all the dreams you have ever had are stored. Because sometimes I remember dreams that I had a long time ago. Of course, one wonders where they have been for so long. For example, when I was ten, I dreamed that I would die. This is the most recent dream I can remember. Then I am shot in the head by a friend of my mother’s. Before that, he chased me through all kinds of streets for a long time, after all he places me in an empty building. So actually a nightmare, but I didn’t think it was that bad at the time.

In my youth I had to move a lot, always within Perth, where I grew up. After my parents separated, I stayed with my father for the first few years. He had a house close to the water, and to this day I have never felt more comfortable than on the beach. If I haven’t been to a beach for a while, I get withdrawal symptoms.

I recently slept in a house in Malibu that I rented for a week to work on my new album. At the end of my first night I woke up, looked out the window, and saw that the sky was full of smoke. Then I noticed that the power had failed. I took my cell phone, googled the word “Malibu” and got the first messages: “Alarm!”, “Immediate evacuation”, “Leave Malibu!”. So I grabbed my beloved Höfner bass and my laptop, which had all the music for my album, jumped into my car and quickly drove away. When I looked around, I saw flames and smoke. I still thought it would be over in a few hours. But the house burned down and I lost everything I had left behind – a real and terrifying nightmare.

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