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‘Martha & the Backseat Drivers’


28 October, 2018
7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
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Martha Louise has found a special blend of talented musicians and friends to add magic to the music she writes and loves. It’s a little bit folk / country / blues and a big bit Americana with full on harmonies and driving lead breaks wrapped around Martha’s vocals. The arrangements are a collaboration from all the driver’s. Paul Symons adds his punchy rhythm & lead guitar and harmony vocals, Cam Bennett on Dobro and Weissenborn guitar and vocals adds the atmospheric slide blues touch and bass player Stuart Grimshaw on acoustic 5 string resonator bass and vocals has a strong connection to jazz and blues. Together they play the songs of contemporary acoustic music from the Austin sounds of Steve Earle to an acoustic version of a Bruce Springsteen classic, the haunting ballads of Gillian Welch to Martha’s own songs of family, loss and love played on guitar and dulcimer. A good time is had by all!

Originally known only as ‘the tall guy with the beard’ & more recently ‘that tall guy with the grey beard’, Kumeu based Paul Symons is a multi-instrumentalist singer songwriter with two solo albums and a growing list of credits accompanying many local artists on stage and in studio sessions. Often appearing as (large) ‘sound man at large’ at a number of acoustic music festivals around the North Island or as part of acoustic music duo ‘Plot’ with bass man Lott, he is also delivering harmonies and piloting a Gibson Jumbo in Martha & the Backseat Drivers.
Cameron is a singer – musician songwriter. He mostly plays acoustic and lap steel guitars. He uses New Zealand as his canvas for song treatments of our past and present with themes ranging from Stan Graham’s shooting rampage of 1941 to the Pike River mining tragedy of 2010 to growing up in suburban Auckland. Along with harmony vocals as one of ‘the Backseat Drivers’ he also performs with Chris Priestley’s ‘Unsung Heroes’ project and the Celtic-fusion band ‘Tamlin’.
Born and raised in London, Stuart’s musical journey has seen him live and work in England, Germany, Holland, and now New Zealand. He has toured through most of Europe as well as parts of the States and Asia, playing bass in theatres, studio and on stage. His work includes composition, arrangement and production, as well as bass playing. Since arriving in NZ he has played almost exclusively a Dobro resonator acoustic bass, which fits well with both the acoustic folk and jazz) musicians he now enjoys playing with in Auckland.
An American born Kiwi who has been at home in the folk / country cross over music scene in NZ since 1973. The Auckland folk scene welcomed her mix of Americana, original songs, guitar and dulcimer playing and is her base but has performed in festivals and folk clubs around the country. Two CDs and many groups later she is over the moon to be standing in the middle of all the harmonies and lead breaks produced by these three talented (tall) musicians and genuine fine human beings, the backseat drivers.