The Boat People (band)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The Boat People
OriginBrisbane, Australia
GenresIndie pop
Years active2000–present
LabelsShock Records
WebsiteOfficial website
MembersJames O'Brien
Robin Waters
Charles Dugan
Tony Garrett
Past membersChris Pickering

The Boat People are an Australian four-piece indie pop band. The Brisbane based group consists of James O'Brien, Robin Waters, Charles Dugan and Tony Garrett. They cite Crowded House and The Beatles as childhood influences but now name-check bands such as Phoenix, Death Cab for Cutie, My Morning Jacket, Wilco and Of Montreal.

The Boaties, as they're affectionately known, are currently managed by Rick Chazan.


The Boat People began performing in the Brisbane music scene in early 2000, releasing their first self-titled E.P. in October of that year. The following year the band's second E.P. "Squeaky Clean E.P." found success on national youth radio station Triple J and the band toured regularly. Another E.P. in 2003 "Three Pieces for Small Ensemble" found more radio success and touring before the departure of drummer Chris Pickering. Pickering was briefly replaced by Geoff Green, of successful Brisbane group George, before Tony Garrett joined the group. The band then released what was to become the first single of their debut album, "Tell Someone Who Cares" which found further radio success.

In August 2005 The Boat People released their first full-length album titled yesyesyesyesyes, which included the singles "Clean" and "Unsettle My Heart". After extensive touring at home, the group made their first trip overseas, performing at the Musexpo conference in Los Angeles. The Boat People also signed a publishing deal with the Sydney-based Ivy League company.

The band returned to the studio in 2007 to begin recording the follow-up to yesyesyesyesyes. On board was producer J. Walker of Machine Translations. In late April 2008, the band released the first single from their forthcoming album Chandeliers, 'Awkward Orchid Orchard'. It was accompanied by a video created by Paul Underwood who has worked on previous videos from the band. In the video, the viewer is encouraged to find 52 bands amongst the visual hints given.

Their second full-length album Chandeliers was released in July 2008 to very strong reviews both locally and in the U.K.

As well as touring locally the band stepped up their overseas commitments performing at the Great Escape Festival in Brighton, U.K., The CMJ festival in New Your City, headlined shows at Spaceland in L.A., performed live on the highly-influential L.A. based "KCRW" radio station, returned to the U.K. and also the U.S. to play the 2009 South By South West conference in Austin Texas, as well as sold-out shows in L.A. and New York. The band is currently managed in the U.S. by the New York-based Paul Brown, of Red Hat Promotions and is booked by Ian Fintack of the Agency Group in Los Angeles. The band also embarked on an Australian tour supporting Melbourne pop/rock group The Basics.

The band has also begun recording their third full-length album. Its first single, Echo Stick Guitars, can be heard on their Myspace page and will be released on 16 October 2009.[1]


  • James O'Brien (vocals/bass)
  • Robin Waters (vocals/keyboard)
  • Charles Dugan (vocals/guitar)
  • Tony Garrett (drums)




  • The Boat People (2000, MGM)
  • Squeaky Clean EP (2002, MGM)
  • Three Pieces for a Small Ensemble (2003, MGM)
  • Tell Someone Who Cares (2004, MGM)


  • Supernova (2002)
  • From The Corner (2002)
  • Arms Length (2003)
  • Tell Someone Who Cares (2004)
  • Clean (2005)
  • Unsettle My Heart (2005)
  • Irony (2005)
  • Awkward Orchid Orchard (2008)
  • Born In The 80s/Hours n Hours (2009)
  • Echo Stick Guitars (2009)
  • "Soporific" (2010)
  • "Under the Ocean" (2010)
  • "Damn Defensive" (2010)


  • Belowground Music Video Awards, Best Indie Clip - single for "Tell Someone Who Cares"
  • Q Song Awards, The Courier- Mail Peoples Choice Award - "Unsettle My Heart"
  • Q Song Awards, The Song of the Year - "Unsettle My Heart"

External links[edit]