Brooke Russell & The Mean Reds

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As we head into the studio to record our debut album we’re inviting y’all to be a part of it and help us along! New tunes and old will be sealed for all eternity in digital format and we’re so excited to have our project underway! Brooke Russell and The Mean Reds head into Head Gap Studios to start recording our debut, full length album on the 11th February, 2013. Engineered by Neil Thomason and produced by the band this full length LP will be ready by August... with a little help from our friends!

With studio time being funded by the band, we are looking for a little support with the final stages of the process... Mastering, pressing, design, release and marketing. If we're gonna do it, we're gonna do it right! The pledge options we have put together are basically album pre-order packages with a few special options if you really love us! T-shirts will be designed by the lovely Clare Foxton at FoxInk and printed by the babin' Eleanor Laud at Kick and Screen.

As I type this tonight, we are exactly one week from starting our album recording and I am so excited. You can keep up with all our studio fun times by following us on Instagram (@brookepr), Twitter (@BrookeRussMusic) and Facebook (Brooke Russell and The Mean Reds).

Thank you in advance for your support. We are excited to have you as part of our project.

Brooke, Grant, Tilman, Ben and Josh xx

Brooke Live at Sofar Sounds

Budget Breakdown

Here's a rough idea of how we plan to spend the money raised with our Pozible campaign.

Mixing - $1000 - Album mix by Neil Thomason at Head Gap Studios.

Mastering - $1000 - Our plan is to send the album to be mastered in the US by a very special person. We will let you know when details are confirmed.

Design - $1500 - Album artwork, poster and T-Shirt design with Claire Foxton at FoxInk

Pressing - $1500 - Digipack CD release with 4 page booklet.

Photography and Film Clip - $1000

Marketing - $1000 - Street press, posters, promotional mail outs and reviews.

What you need to know about us...

With songs about boozy nights, bad decisions, broken hearts and the best intentions, Brooke Russell and The Mean Reds blend country, blues, folk and swing to appease their love of all things vintage. Culminating in a kitchen in Fitzroy North, The Mean Reds are based in Melbourne and consist of Brooke Russell on voice, guitar and mandolin, Grant Taylor on lead guitar, Ben Franz on double bass, Tilman Robinson on backing vocals and trombone and Josh Barber on drums.

Drawing influence from swing, alt country and trad jazz, the band are also inspired by the songs of Ryan Adams, Joe Henry, Gillian Welch, Tom Waits and Neko Case. With a new recording on the way, Brooke and the fellas can be found in a dark bar near you, swooning and serenading.

The Mean Reds

Nerding out over great albums and imagining our dream sound... These guys are the best fellas in the world.

Grant Taylor

My real love of music is the area where country, jazz and rock meet, however I have had the opportunity to play in many different genres. Most notably, recording and touring extensively with Sydney Acid Jazz/ Reggae band "Bellydance" who realeased the cd "One Blood"which was nominated for an A.R.I.A award for "Best Dance Release" in 1994. It was also a JJJ album of the week with 2 singles played regularly. One area I have played in since moving to Melbourne is in the African music scene most notably, recording and touring in "Soukous Ba Congo" who released the cd "Zonga Zonga" in 2000.The band won "best live world music act" at the Australia Live Music Awards and went on to play all the major festivals in Australia regularly.Now I'm really excited with the prospects and to be a part of "Brooke Russell and the Mean Reds".


Ben Franz

Ben Franz was born in the early 70's in Perth and learned piano as a child. Moving on to guitar and then double bass as a teenager, Ben began gigging professionally in rockabilly and rhythm and blues bands in 1989. Studying jazz at the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts in the early 90's, Ben has since played music as diverse as experimental noise to Western Swing, though on bass Ben mainly settled into specialising in backing singer/songwriters. In 2003 Ben received Two ARIA awards with the Waifs, for whom he has been the regular bassist since 2001. Ben is also currently an active a pedal and lap steel guitarist around Melbourne, to where he relocated in 2009. 

Tilman Robinson

Tilman is a composer and trombonist currently residing in Melbourne, Australia. Tilman graduated from the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts in 2009 with a Bachelor of Music (First Class Honours) majoring in composition. Since then he has received commissions from prominent jazz and classical ensembles as well as arranging for a diverse range of artists. In 2012, Tilman was awarded the APRA/Melbourne Jazz Fringe Festival Composer Commission to compose a new multi-movement work for his ensemble, Network of Lines. As a trombonist, Tilman has performed with a wide range of jazz and contemporary artists includingMartha Wainwright, Dan Sultan,The Bang On a Can All Stars, John Hollenbeck, Theo Bleckmann, Ed Partyka, Dave Douglas, Jim Pugh, Buena Vista Social Club, Kneebody and Myra Melford.

Joshua Barber

Joshua Barber has been playing drums since early childhood. After studying under some of Australia's leading jazzers at the VCA, Joshua has played with a range of acts including Gotye, Archie Roach, Lisa Mitchell and many others. He approaches the drums with colour and melody.


'without doubt the best drummer in the world' - Nic Lam

Our mighty engineer, ladies and gentleman!

Neil Thomason

Neil Thomason has been recording bands since 1997 and has had the privilege of working with artists as varied as Wagons, My Disco, Augie March, Jen Cloher, Heirs, Princess One Point Five, The Crayon Fields and Black Cab. Neil sees his role in recording a band as "being kind of a conduit between the band and the finished record. If a band asks me to be involved in making a record with them, the first thing I ask is 'What kind of record do you want to make?' I see my job as one that involves ascertaining in as much detail as I can what it is the band wants to achieve with their recording, and then advising the best way I know about how the band can do that. Neil is equally at home working creatively with a band as a producer, or in a purely technical role as engineer, or a combination of both.

on 7th May 2013 at 1:00am. The payment portal is closed now.
A$5 +That first little taste! A digital pre-release of our first single with an extra bonus B side.
0 Chosen | 100 AvailableEst. delivery is June 2013
A$15 +Digital goodness! A pre-release, digital copy of the full album.
6 Chosen | 144 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2013
A$22 +Our debut album in gorgeous digipack form! We'll even send it straight to you as soon as it's done!
21 Chosen | 279 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2013
A$37 +Our debut album in gorgeous digipack form PLUS a ticket to our Melbourne CD launch! Venue TBA.
6 Chosen | 94 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2013
A$47 +Our debut album in digipack form PLUS an organic cotton T-shirt with our name on it, designed by Claire Foxton and screen printed by Eleanor Laud at Kick and Screen. (Please specify T-shirt size)
9 Chosen | 41 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2013
A$80 +The 'we love that you love us' pledge. Our debut album in digipack form, T-shirt and a double pass to our Melbourne launch. You little sweethearts!
5 Chosen | 45 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2013
A$150 +The Mean Red Groupie pledge! Digipack CD, T-shirt, double pass to the launch PLUS an invitation to a very special, pre-release listening party at Monkey Bar, Fitzroy North (date TBC but probably July) We'll play a little set for you and then we can all hang out!
6 Chosen | 44 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2013
A$500 +An acoustic backyard duo show for you and your friends!! You throw the party, we'll play the tunes! (Melbourne metro area only) Plus a digipack CD, T-shirt and double pass to the launch!
2 Chosen | 2 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2013
A$1000 +Full band show at your house! You provide a power point and we'll bring everything else! Two sets of Mean Reds in your lougeroom/backyard! (Melbourne metro area only) Pack includes Digipack CD, T-Shirt, double pass to the launch and invite to the listening party. **Date will be subject to band availability
0 Chosen | 2 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2013