Is this really the first professional photo shoot the two of you have done together?
Chris Sebastian: It sure is. This was a new experience for me. We do a lot of non-work-related things together, but this is definitely your domain, Guy. You’ve had a very good sense of style for a long time.
Guy Sebastian: [Laughs] No, not for a long time. When I first started out, I didn’t care what I wore. I feel a responsibility as your older brother to say, “Don’t do what I did!” I don’t want you to experience the same despair I feel when I look at some of the disgusting things I wore back in the day.
Chris: For me it was hairstyles. I haven’t had a good run.
Chris: Yeah. Real bad. Mostly it’s you
that points it out.
Chris, your daughter Ava was born in March, so you’re both dads now. How is fatherhood going?
Chris: I was so nervous about having a girl. I thought I wouldn’t know what to do, because I’m very close to Guy’s boys. I’m the fun uncle that brings them chocolate.
Guy: We’re all going to be fathers soon. Our youngest brother Jeremy is expecting his first child, as well. So, all four Sebastian boys will be parents soon.
Chris: That’s wild.
Guy: It’ll be a fun little Christmas, this year.
Speaking of celebrations, how are you planning to spend Father’s Day?
Chris: My wife’s first Mother’s Day, I forgot how big a deal it would be. I did something nice… but I should have done more.
Guy: The question is, though, what more can you do from the golf course? [Laughs]
Chris: [Laughs] We went out for a lovely picnic… on the golf course. I’m joking, there was no golf course.
Guy: I’m hoping [my wife] Jules will have something planned because I actually gave her a pretty cracking Mother’s Day. I recorded a song with the boys.
Chris: Oh, that was incredible. It was the cutest thing I’ve ever seen. I got teary.
Guy: I was editing the vocals with tears streaming down my face. And then when we played it for Jules, she was just a mess.
You were, of course, both busy on The Voice this season – one as coach, the other as contestant. Guy, did you know Chris was entering?
Guy: Yes, absolutely. I sat down with Chris and we talked about it. Chris said they had asked him the year before and he declined because it was my first year as a coach and he thought it would be a bit weird.
Chris: It’s just not something we’ve done before; we’ve never mixed family and work.
Guy: I made it clear with the producers from the outset that I didn’t want any kind of drama or anything attached to it. He’s my brother and this is where I draw the line. It was above board all the way.
Did your families watch it together?
Guy: We watched the first episode together and then Chris came over with a whole bunch of family for the Grand Finale.
In previous years, it has been a live show. This year was pre-recorded, yet you still didn’t know who won. How did that work?
Guy: We filmed four alternate endings.
Chris: The network had three minutes to play the ending of the person who won when the producers told them the final voting results.
Guy: And it was a pretty solid top four. I looked at all of the performances and they were all brilliant, but I don’t think they captured Australia. Yet, when you sang ‘The Horses’ with Daryl [Braithwaite]…
Chris: How do you not love ‘The Horses’?
Guy: How do you not love Daryl?
What was the moment like when you realised Chris had actually won?
Guy: Absolute chaos. I think everyone thought Chris was the underdog. I thought that maybe his being my brother may not be great for him. We all lost it.
Chris: A moment of complete shock and gratitude is the only way I can describe it.
There was some negative discourse on social media and an onslaught of stories about it perhaps not being fair due to the family connection. How did you cope with that backlash?
Chris: Honestly, I didn’t think about it. I think it’s a bit of a disservice for the people who actually got behind me – and even fans of the show – to focus on the people who had negative things to say.
Guy: I think we often amplify a small minority of very loud, negative people. I said to Chris early on, “You’re never going to please everyone. There are people who are for you, and they will love and support everything. And then most people don’t really care, they may like some of your songs – or not. And they might like you – or not. But they’re not really engaged. Then there are these tiny amounts of people who just hate everything and it doesn’t matter about the truth, they will label you.”
Chris: It’s true.
Guy: I learnt that lesson early on. I responded to negativity and someone wrote and said, “I’ve written to you for two, three years, with countless amounts of supportive messages and you’ve never responded to me. This d*ckhead writes one thing and gets a response from you.” It reduced me to tears.
And now you’re both releasing your new music at the same time. What is it like to share that moment?
Chris: It’s wild. Our brother Ollie sent us a photo three days after the Grand Finale and we were both in the Top 3 on the charts, which was a nice commemorative moment. I love it. I’m always going to be a fan of Guy’s music.
Guy: And I’ve loved hearing Chris’ song get played. I’ve always known Chris’ songwriting and abilities, so him getting a chance to let that shine now, as a brother but also as a fellow artist, makes me so proud. I feel like you have a spring in your step.
Chris: Definitely. I don’t feel like there’s a point to prove. There’s no need to convince people. It’s just about making music and trying to make people feel something. That’s the only thought process going forward.
Guy Sebastian’s new studio album T.R.U.T.H. is set for release in October; Chris Sebastian’s The Complete Collection is available to buy, stream and download now.