STONEFIELD an amazing all girl blues/rock Band 4 sisters from rural Australia youngest 14- played the John Peel
stage at Glastonbury in 2011 and back for 2013- won the Triple JJJ award in Sydney.

It all started in a shed.
More specifically, it started in a shed on a family hobby farm in a tiny rural township just north of Melbourne.
The four Findlay sisters, who’d go on to become the earthen psych-rock opal that is Stonefield, had been granted
their wish of a drum kit by their parents, whose Zappa, Hendrix and Zeppelin records had long been the shared soundtrack of the household. The shed, which housed little other than old furniture and a broken billiards table, was the obvious place in which to contain the young siblings’ inexpert bashings. Amy – the oldest Findlay, though at that time just 15 – took a particular shine to the kit and soon began lessons, her practice sessions echoing out across the family’s acreage. It wasn’t long, however, before her sisters were drawn back into the shelter as, one by one, they found their own instruments to wrangle with. Hannah, then 13, started on guitar. Sarah, 12, took on the keyboard. Holly, just seven years old, listened in on her sisters practising and, perhaps hearing that something was missing, asked her father for a bass. As they tell it now, it was serendipity that the instruments each Findlay found a kinship with together made the workings of a band. However, six years later, as Stonefield begin to reveal themselves to the world via spirit-capturing recordings and live shows that bring the word ‘incendiary’ back from rock journo heaven, it’s hard not to believe there was a more astute instinct at play. That is to say: listen to Stonefield and try to figure out what else the Findlays could possibly be doing.
Of course, it wasn’t a clear path from their initial shed fumblings to festival stages and the playlists of Triple J and
London’s career-launching XFM. First came those lessons, which, in a town with a population of just over 200 people,
initially proved a problem of opportunity. Fortuitously (yes, there are a few magical circumstances in this story),
just as the Findlays’ collection of instruments was growing, a music teacher moved into the property next door and was
commissioned to coach each sister in her craft. (Sarah got the short end of the stick, perhaps, as this teacher didn’t
play keys and she was, therefore, relegated to learning via theory – a task she shrugs off with a smile now.)
Then came their first all-in practices in which the sisters ran through every easy radio song they could think of until
they plucked up the courage to tackle the Holy Grail of rock anthems: ‘Purple Haze.’ “Our favourite songs to cover were Hendrix,” nods Amy, who now also takes care of lead vocals from behind her kit. “And then we started to figure out how to write originals.” From there, it was onto any community gig that would have them. Hannah remembers, “We got our mum to call around and find out if there was anywhere we could play a gig in front of people and we found out that there was this youth music group who put on shows around the area, so we went and did a battle of the bands. And we won.” Time in the studio was secured as part of the prize and the band’s first demos were recorded – then discarded. More competitions followed, leading to further wins and further studio time, as well as trips to the inner-city venues of Melbourne, but still something wasn’t quite right.
The light-bulb moment for the band came in 2010 when the Findlays embarked on their first family holiday to America,
taking in a cruise that doubled as a rock festival. The Findlay parents had booked the trip after discovering that
Zappa Plays Zappa, the group led by Frank Zappa’s son Dweezil, was on the bill, and Jam Cruise introduced the teenaged sisters to blues, rock and jam bands from New Orleans and other parts of the South as they drifted down the Caribbean. Inspired on their return, Stonefield wrote the song ‘Foreign Lover’ and recorded it for a project Amy was working on as part of her tertiary songwriting studies. When they arrived home from the studio that day, the siblings’ mother suggested they enter the track in Triple J’s unsigned band competition, Unearthed. The deadline for entries was that night. They weren’t convinced they had a chance, but decided to give it a shot.
Soon enough, ‘Foreign Lover’ was all over Triple J, followed shortly by infectious rock stomper ‘Through The Clover,’
the song they were given the opportunity to record as part of the competition’s first prize. Stonefield was invited to
showcase at the inaugural One Movement music and arts conference in Perth, where they were approached after their set by the conference’s meetings manager. Hannah takes up the story: “A girl came up to us and said, I’ve just been talking to [renowned band booker] Martin Elbourne, and we were like, OK – because we didn’t really know who that was – and she said, He wants you to play Glastonbury. And we didn’t know if she was serious or not.”
She was. Elbourne was so taken with their set that he signed Stonefield on to play the 2011 Glastonbury Festival in the UK on the spot.
The rest of the band’s 2010/11 summer was spent playing their first (sold out) headline shows and being introduced to
festival crowds, as well as fielding industry offers before teaming for Australian and New Zealand releases with the
fresh Wunderkind Records, run by former Warner Music Australia President of A&R Michael Parisi. A double A-side single recorded with producer Scott Horscroft (Silverchair, The Presets) will be the band’s first Wunderkind output.
Their introduction to UK audiences has also been made via their debut Through The Clover EP being released there on boutique label Flock Records, which also houses Australian folk royalty Angus & Julia Stone.
As for the sisters themselves, each is rapidly defining her personality within and outside the group. Amy is a stoic
and intense leader on vocals and drums, but is quick to swoop an older-sister wing over the clan. Hannah is every bit
the mysterious guitarist, aloof with a wild glint in her eye. Sarah, the quieter of the four, is Mother Nature’s graceful
child on keys. And yes, like her bass riffs, Holly is a shot of unbridled, youthful energy.
At home, they still write and practice in the shed, their explosive jams reverberating out across the paddocks.
The only difference now is that we all get to share in rock’n’roll’s newest family story.

Snaki: *Band Score 9.0/10* " These Girls know how to Rock. The future belongs to them for Sure "!"
For BeRock Radio MiniZine (2012)

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