Caroline Easther Profile

John Pilley
4 Apr 2019

Caroline Easther is known for her drum work, which has seen her sit behind jazz, country, blues, pop and rock ensembles for over 35 years. Easther is not only an accomplished drummer, but additionally is a pianist, violinist, arranger and teacher. Her formal musical background gives her the ability to interpret, and contribute to the overall sound in a performance: in her words, “colour” songs.

Easther grew up in a musical family and played classical violin and piano through the formal grades. She recalls writing her own songs from an early age, “around nine or 10”, under the influence of the perennials of the time: Cat Stevens, Joni Mitchell, Carole King and Neil Young. She may have had access to a piano and violin at home, but had to buy her own guitar.

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Let's Planet at Pauatahanui, 1999. From left: Martin Durrant, Murray Costello, Alan Galloway, Caroline Easther. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet, 1999, at the Pauatahanui farm north of Wellington where they often rehearsed. From left: Martin Durrant, Murray Costello, Alan Galloway, Caroline Easther.
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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The Spines circa 1982: Caroline Easther, Jon McLeary and Rob Mahoney
Photo credit: Photo by Bryan Staff
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Circus Block Four - Dean Hutton, Gavin McLean, Caroline Easther, Jeff Thorp
Photo credit: Courtesy of James Moss
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Let's Planet, an early publicity picture. From left: Ben Stewart, Helen Cairney (front), Caroline Easther, Alan Galloway, Murray Costello. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet, 1993, at the time of the Loving Tongues album. From left: Jules Munro, Alan Galloway, Caroline Easther, Murray Costello. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet at Pauatahanui, 1999. From left: Alan Galloway, Martin Durrant, Murray Costello, Caroline Easther. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet in the 'Loving Tongues' period, c. 1993. From left: Jules Munro, Alan Galloway, Caroline Easther, Murray Costello. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Caroline Easther - Lucky (2019)
Photo credit: Manan Fredriksson
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The Spines circa 1982: Caroline Easther, Jon McLeary and Rob Mahoney
Photo credit: Photo by Bryan Staff
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Let's Planet (L-R): Ben Stewart, Caroline Easther, Helen Cairney, Alan Galloway (back), Murray Costello. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet, 1987. From left: Ben Stewart, Helen Cairney (back), Caroline Easther, Alan Galloway, Murray Costello. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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The Chills in Holland in 1987: Justin Harwood, Martin Phillipps, Andrew Todd and Caroline Easther
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Let's Planet at Pauatahanui, late 1990s. From left: Caroline Easther, Mike Jansen, Alan Galloway.
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Back cover to Caroline Easther's Lucky album (2019). Design by Manan Fredriksson. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Caroline Easther (left) with keyboardist Helen Cairney, at one of the regular picnic/concerts Let's Planet held at Pauatahanui in the late 1980s. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet live, 1990, at the time the 'Favours' album was released. From left: Helen Cairney, Ben Stewart, Alan Galloway, Caroline Easther and Murray Costello. Easther is playing her Slingerland drumkit, which was later stolen. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet, 1998, taken at Lyall Bay, Wellington for the 'La Gloria' album. From left: Mike Jansen, Caroline Easther, Jules Munro, Alan Galloway.
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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The Chills, Rip It Up December 1987.
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An in-store appearance for the release of Barry Saunders's 'Magnetic South' album, Kilbirnie, Wellington, 1998. From left: Alan Norman, Barry Saunders, Caroline Easther. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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The Juke Jivers, 1986, playing a Summer City gig at the Wellington Botanic Garden's Dell stage. From left: James Daniels, Caroline Easther, Dave Murphy, Darrell Prowse. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Caroline Easther in The Chills with bassist Justin Harwood; location unknown. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet, 1980s. From left, back row: Ben Stewart, Murray Costello, Helen Cairney; in front, Alan Galloway, Caroline Easther. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Caroline Easther on guitar, at Alan Galloway's 50th birthday party, Wellington, 2000.
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet, 1998, taken at Lyall Bay, Wellington for the 'La Gloria' album. From left: Alan Galloway, Mike Jansen, Jules Munro, Caroline Easther. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Caroline Easther in Let's Planet, reunited at Molly Malone's, Wellington, in 2000 for Alan Galloway's birthday party. Martin Durrant on drums. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Caroline Easther in Let's Planet.
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet (l-r): Alan Galloway, Murray Costello, Caroline Easther, Martin Durrant. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet (L-R): Alan Galloway, Caroline Easther, Jules Munro, Murray Costello. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet at the Pauatahanui farm where they rehearsed, 1999. From left: Martin Durrant, Murray Costello, Alan Galloway, Caroline Easther.
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Caroline Easther Performs No Ordinary Day at The 13th Floor, 2019
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Barry Saunders (left) with Alan Norman and Caroline Easther, in a photo taken for Saunders's Magnetic South CD, 1998. 
Photo credit: Guy Robinson
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Let's Planet at the Wellington waterfront. From left: Ben Stewart, Murray Costello, Alan Galloway, Helen Cairney, Caroline Easther. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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The Chills in Berlin, 1980s. From left: Caroline Easther, Martin Phillipps, Andrew Todd, Justin Harwood.
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet, c. 1999, from left: Martin Durrant, Caroline Easther, Alan Galloway, and Murray Costello. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet - Arm And A Leg (from the Loving Tongues album, 1993. Video directed by Karyn Hay)
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Let's Planet at Wellington's Botanic Gardens, January 1986. From left: Caroline Easther, Murray Costello, Helen Cairney, Ben Stewart, Alan Galloway. 
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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Let's Planet at Pauatahanui, c1999. From left: Caroline Easther, Martin Durrant, Alan Galloway; at back, Murray Costello.
Photo credit: Caroline Easther collection
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