We caught up with partners in music and life, Jess & Matt, to talk love songs and modern romance

We caught up with partners in music and life, Jess & Matt, to talk love songs and modern romance

Words by Marnie Vinall

Chapel Off Chapel is bringing some of Australia’s most impressive music talent to the stage as part of its Chapel Summer Sessions series.

Two who are no strangers to the Chapel Off Chapel spotlight are husband and wife pop duo, Jess & Matt, consisting of Jess Dunbar and Matt Price. In fact, the pair claim the venue is one of their favourites to return home to. 

“We love Chapel Off Chapel, we think it’s probably our favourite venue in Australia”, claims Price.

“We can create those really intimate moments. It’s one of those amazing rooms where you can see everyone’s face and really share the stories. We played there February last year and it was just incredible, so we can’t wait to come back with the full band. It’s going to be really exciting.”

This time around, the duo will be taking the stage on Valentine’s Day, which seems like a perfect fit given their time in the public eye as a couple. They’re not afraid of a good love song or two either, something sure to characterise their Summer Sessions performance.

“We’ve got a few messages for a few special love song dedications, so we’re working a couple into the show to surprise a couple of people in the audience,” Price says.

“We wanted to make it a nice intimate moment – for people to share Valentine’s Day with us, that’s a big responsibility. So, we’ve got to make sure love is in the air.”

Along with the love song dedications, the pair will also be showcasing their new single, ‘Know About You’. Despite most of their previous work being about the two’s relationship, Dunbar explains that this song is written from a time before the two met. As the song lets on, the pair made visual acquaintances before they’d even first laid eyes on each other.

“We worked out that I actually knew everything about Matt before we met, as I did a bit of social media stalking about ten years ago. Then he fessed up that he knew everything about me,” Dunbar tells.

“Yeah, it was kind of an awkward conversation that we had,” Price admits. “We’d been dating for a few years when we both fessed up to a bit of Facebook stalking.

“It’s very prevalent in modern day relationships but no one talks about it. So, after we had out little awkward conversation about that we decided to write a song about it,” laughs Price.

Alongside some love song dedications and new single, ‘Know About You’, the duo will also perform some originals from their time spent in Nashville earlier in the year.

The pair have spent a few months each year for the last few years in the Tennessean city writing and recording, and let on that this round, they’ve really explored deeper subject matter.

“The new body of work that we’ve been working on, it definitely has more of an organic feel to a lot of the songs,” says Price. 

“It’s like couple therapy when we’re writing songs at times as well. We’ve dug pretty deep.”

While across the Pacific, the couple also worked with some of their idols, including Chris Isaak, who they met through their time on X-Factor.

“He just took us under his wing and just to be sitting on his couch writing songs, all that stuff is just amazing,” explains Price. “It gave us time to completely engulf ourselves in the songwriting.”

With a slew of new material and some love song dedications in tow, Jess & Matt’s Valentine’s Day performance at Chapel Summer Sessions is set to be a special one. What’s more, $5 from every ticket will be going to Red Cross to aid in the bushfire relief.

Jess & Matt return to Chapel Summer Sessions on Friday February 14. Find out more about the rest of the program and grab tickets via chapeloffchapel.com.au