Friday, February 1, performance night @ The Old Hepburn Hotel
AS usual, a great night awaits for a performers and punters alike, with an opportunity to perform short sets and it has an added bonus this month, best act wins the door!
Saturday, February 2, Justin Townes Earle (US) @ Theatre Royal, Castlemaine
ON his sixth visit to our shores, Justin is already a very young veteran of the Australian touring circuit, with an impressive four solo albums and an EP under his belt.
Since first playing to small audiences, including our now defunct (again) Palais, in 2008, he has amassed a large number of fans where it has been possible and in fact absolutely gratifying to have this superb musician make an annual pilgrimage to a range of festivals and in this case a return to our region.
If you haven’t seen him live, you should.
His family history and personal struggles are well documented, suffice to say he has earned the right to be mentioned as an artist in his own right, without any reference to famous father Steve (actually I think I just did!)
His music now runs the gamut of Americana music styles and in the case of his latest work Nothing’s Gonna Change the Way You Feel About Me Now has moved more towards Memphis soul.
But don’t fret, traditional country influences still dominate this musician’s work, with a seemingly inextricable link to the greats, such as the Townes (Van Zandt), of his namesake.
He has recently made his production debut, with the legendary Wanda Jackson’s new album Unfinished Business. As local muso Tony Ryan remarked to me after his last visit, “He’s the real deal”.
I couldn’t agree more.
Joining him on this trip will be Houston singer-songwriter Robert Ellis who earned widespread acclaim for his debut album Photographs.
Saturday, February 2, Lee Rosser Solo @ Horvat’s Wine Bar
THIS debut solo record from the former Rambunctious frontman has been praised as possessing the quality of working as well in the studio as it does live.
Lee has a three-octave vocal range and grooving right hand and with no rehearsals collaborated with drummer Nicky Bomba (Joe Camilleri, John Butler Trio).
Tracks such as Fly and Changing were laid down on the first take.
John Carver from PBS describes Lee as, “One of the most entrancing and energetic bands on the Australian scene.
Superb musicianship, great songs and passion are the hallmarks. I can watch them win an audience in seconds.”
Saturday, February 2, Ghost Notes @ The Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine
BRISBANE instrumental quintet Ghost Notes will launch their recently re-released album By Cover Of Night.
Ghost Notes make dynamic music and cites influences folk, jazz, noise-rock, garage, kraut, Morricone soundtracks and various strains of experimental music as it does to so-called post-rock.
Ghost Notes are also definitively a rock band “with surging guitars and drums that swing between extremes of both volume and rigidity”.