Lower Hutt born Julia Deans was only one year old when her family returned to Christchurch to live. From proud Canterbury pioneering stock, her grandfather and well known artist, the Late Austen Deans, was one of the last Deans to be born at Riccarton House.
But she was to eventually return to Wellington to pursue her musical dreams. In the early 1990’s, she joined the Celtic rock band ‘Banshee Ree’ and enjoyed a fan base that reached as far as Australia where they also toured. But it was in 1996 when Deans became the lead singer of a band that would become a household name. With fellow Wellingtonian, guitarist Steve Wells, they founded the band ‘Fur Patrol’.
Together, they released three albums and had a Number One hit with ‘Lydia’ in 2000. The following year brought Deans and the band, Best Single of the Year, Best Female Vocalist of the Year, and Best Songwriter of the Year – only narrowly missing the Best Album of the Year at the New Zealand Music Awards. At the A.P.R.A awards, ‘Fur Patrol’ won the Most Performed Work in New Zealand.
Wanting to reach a wider audience, the band made the move to Melbourne and worked on their third album. Sadly, it wasn’t as successful as hoped but it gave Deans the opportunity to work solo on some of her own work that hadn’t ’made the cut’ for ‘Fur Patrol’.
In 2010, Deans released her first solo album, named ‘Modern Fables’. Her second album, which was self titled, took home Album of the Year at the New Zealand Music Awards in 2012.
While, she continues to write her own music, she does work part time with a New Zealand band known as ‘The Adults. ’ She has just recently returned to Christchurch to perform with Anika Moa at the newly restored Isaac Royal Theatre (2015).
*Image courtesy of Julia Deans – https://www.facebook.com/juliadeans*