The Stars Are A Mess But Whitley Certainly Isn’t

Homegrown talent isn’t hard to come by around the Mornington Peninsula and recently PEARL Magazine caught up with one of its most talented exports, ‘Whitley’ (aka Lawrence Greenwood).

Fresh from the release of his new album Even The Stars Are A Mess’ and 3 years of travelling, Whitley is back home touring Australia and admits a small pub in Victoria is where he perfected his musical talent. “Marty Williams used to run a local musicians night in Balnarring, he encouraged everyone to play together, a lot of good acts came out of there…” he explains. “Everybody could express themselves and tell each other exactly what they thought of each other”.

At a young age he moved schools frequently and even lived in Europe for a while but says Dromana is home and has fond memories growing up there. “ My mates and I would ride our bikes down at Mt Martha estuary, build jumps for our BMX’s and fly through the trees and injure ourselves, much to my mothers dismay.”

Greenwood also remembers his first big break in music fondly, when his song Lost In Time was played on Triple J. “Me and my mates were driving down to the surf one day and they started playing it. From then on they played it over and over again, I couldn’t believe it.”

My Heart Is Not A Machine, the lead single from his new album, is getting great reviews along with the album itself. Rolling Stone awarded it four stars, which was a great reaction for Whitley from such a publication. “It was really nice, I appreciate that someone understood what I had written.” He continues, “I just hope that when I play in Melbourne they understand the music and in turn feel understood by it. That would be my greatest hope”.

The trouble Greenwood went through trying to record this album was remarkable. From travelling to London, Peru and the Netherlands in search of a recording studio, to contracting salmonella, before finally settling in a small village in Tuscany, Italy. Whitley reveals he went through a purple patch of writing here and says this inspiration came because it reminded him of home. “Just being in the forest in Tuscany reminded me of the Peninsula. There was a lot of trees around and there was something about this particular area that reminded me of home.” He continues, “I like being away from the city. I only live there because that’s where my mates live and if we all agreed to move back to Rye or something, I’d move there in a minute.”

Whitley has toured Australia and Europe, sold out shows in America and travelled the world but he remains firmly grounded and always likes to spend time with his mates. “The first thing I did when I got home was go to my see my friend Ben. We sat in his shed all night and talked sh*t,” he laughs.

As for the future, Greenwood plans to go back to Tuscany in the summer to “do some writing, eat some pizza and ride (his) bike.” He’s written a book of poetry and wants to publish it when he finds the time, but his biggest concern at the moment is about this article, saying, “I hope mum reads it.”

Whitley’s new album Even The Stars Are A Mess is out now, through Dew Process/Universal. For more info, find him on Facebook at


[iphorm_popup id=”1″ name=”artist inquiry form”]Submit An Artist Booking Enquiry[/iphorm_popup]