Gig of the week: No sex, drugs or drunken students, please


After 20 long years writing songs, Josephine Costain’s patience is finally being rewarded. 

The Auckland-based singer has hit the road for a solo tour to pave the way for her debut single and album. 

And Queenstown-bound Costain – who’s been performing since she was nine – reckons when her tunes hit the 
shops later in the year, it’ll have been well worth the wait. 

“Seeking sex, drugs and rock and roll or instant fame and fortune hasn’t been my journey and I’m still being true to that,” she says. 

“There are lots of horror stories of people who have been chewed up and spat out by the music business but I’ve just trusted in the process and trusted in my own goals. 

“I’ve been really particular about how I’ve gone about things and have been focussed on developing over a long period of time.” 

Costain recently returned from a spell in the United States where she studied songwriting at the world-famous Berklee College of Music in Boston and played gigs in New York and San Francisco. 

She also spent time collaborating with professional writers in the country music capital of Nashville. 

“I went through quite a frustrating time in New Zealand trying to improve on my craft,” Costain explains. “I sent out some of my work to some pretty well-known artists here for some feedback and guidance but nothing much was forthcoming. 

“It’s probably because everyone just does their own thing but they don’t necessarily know how to explain how to do it. 

“But Berklee College has the only course in the world where you can major in songwriting and I found it really helpful,” she says. 

“There were so many components that really made so much sense to me and explained why some songs work and others don’t.” 

She adds: “Nashville was a great experience too because everyone there is so passionate about good songs and they were very genuine and welcoming.” 

Costain is looking forward to making her resort debut at the Dux on Sunday afternoon. 

“I hear there’s usually quite an international audience and that most people are in a really good mood because a lot of them are on holiday,” she says. 

“It’ll make a nice change from playing to drunken students, so I can’t wait.”