million is an emerging self-produced trio based in Melbourne/Naarm. The band is made up of Craig Kemp, Lil Friedmann and Jacinta Le Ralph. Their mission is to tell stories inspired by both personal and universal experiences, delicately interweaving lyrical melodies and narrative with their love of synthy, beat-driven electronica.
Having formed between lockdowns in June 2020, the group spent the following six months working virtually on demos and discovering their sound. By summer 2021, the band were ready to release their shimmery pop tracks into the world, debuting with ‘problem’ and following up with ‘mess we made’, ‘200 days’ and ‘deja vu’. Each song told a story through catchy hooks and lyrics that didn’t shy away from heavier themes. In 2022, the band’s single ‘something right’ showed their softer, gentler side, and their diversity as skilled musicians and songwriters.
Craig, Lil and Jacinta met years ago at uni (JMC, to be specific) in their Music Performance stream. The course involved many gruelling nights of rehearsals, performances and coursework, and taught them valuable production and songwriting skills. The three band members have remained close mates ever since, working together on various music projects: Craig and Lil on an instrumental project called Canvas, and Jacinta and Craig on wedding music. In June 2020, they decided to book a rehearsal room between lockdowns to just ‘see what happened’, and were all surprised at just how easy and fun writing together was. All three of them had wanted to step into pop writing, and realised that they were stronger writers together.
Something the three of them love is the collaboration on every million track – Craig, Lil and Jacinta are all songwriters in their own right, and so can each comfortably contribute to the entire writing process – lyrics, melody, structure and sounds. Their varying taste in music and perspectives, too, means that they have the ability to continually bounce new ideas off of each other and build on each other’s ideas organically.
When Melbourne went back into lockdown, the group decided not to lose momentum, and so kept writing virtually and coming up with a bit of a game plan for when they could be in the same room again, including a plan to release an EP and gig as much as they could around Melbourne’s hot spots. It would turn out that one of their tracks, ‘200 days’, was written, recorded and released entirely separate from each other, in houses on opposite sides of Melbourne – though the group did not know the extent of Melbourne’s strict restrictions at the time.
When it came time to release their first track into the world, ‘problem’ seemed like the clear choice. It was the first song the crew wrote together on that day at the studio. ‘problem’ also cemented the fact that million wanted to be storytellers, and to draw inspiration from a variety of experiences. ‘problem’ helped the group establish what they wanted their sound to be, coming back to their love of the retro influence you can hear in today’s modern pop, and beginning to feature the heavy synths, funk guitar lines and energetic beats that would become synonymous with the band’s sound.
So, what’s next for the pop trio?
The band is finally playing music live after a long hiatus from the stage due to lockdowns. Be sure to catch them around town, playing their catchy repertoire and going from strength to strength with each release.
The Band, or two thirds of them (Lil Friedmann and Jacinta Le Ralph) came into InnerFM to chat and Co-Host with MnM presenter James… You can listen to the audio below.
million on Spotify
Find out everything else there is to know about the band – HERE!