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Tom Rodwell: Wood & Waste Album release tour


23 March, 2023
7:30 pm

Tickets @Humanitix

Auckland singer-guitarist, blues musician and writer Tom Rodwell isn’t as well known as he should be, unless you read the fine print on recordings by Coco Davis and Don McGlashan’s last Lucky Stars.

But his Wood & Waste is a delightful and sometimes dark journey from downbeat electric blues (Don’t Be a Fugitive All Your Life) through idiosyncratic funk (Keep on Knockin’), slippery exotica (Plenty Time bringing West African juju guitars to where Harry Nilsson and Ry Cooder find common ground) and earthy slide guitar blues (the steamy Touch Me Like a Teddy Bear).

Here too is the rolling Caribbean simmer of She Got Me Boiling (cannibalism for your dancing shoes), addictively supple pop (Make Believe) and ethereal guitar paralleling the reflective, exceptionally beautiful Dead End Road.

Rodwell – whose guitar playing has the warmth and fluidity of J.J. Cale and Bill Frisell or the grit of a Chicago blues bruiser – delights in the oblique: Keep on Knockin’ mentions 19thcentury British polymath William Morris and American painter Edward Hopper.

By saying less (Small Town), Tom Rodwell offers understated ideas which often hit head, heart and feet simultaneously.

An English artist based in New Zealand, Rodwell’s vision of post-blues as dance music has been supple enough to
embrace rhythms from spirituals and calypso, and seen him support acts like Otis Taylor, C.W. Stoneking and Leon
Russell. (“Beautiful tunes, beautiful groove—you don’t hear that anymore,” said Derek Trucks). A parallel career
as a session player has seen him moonlight live and on record for artists as diverse as Lonnie Holley, Robert Lamm and Don McGlashan, as well as various avant-jazz projects.

It’s an eclectic, danceable (even solo) show, going from raucous to moody and back, and generally a good time for all bohemians. So come groove in the Fairfield Ballroom