I love connecting with community, following years of travel to far away places. I believe in sustainability. Intuitive dance, and mind/body practices keep me blissfully healthy. Hoping to share unique people's stories with you.
Alex Lloyd Live in Adelaide, for a Night of Acoustic Hits
Norwood Hotel hosts Alex Lloyd, October 5th on his 'Acoustica' tour. You could expect an atmosphere reminiscent of a down home blues bar along Sixth Street Austin, Texas or somewhere in Nashville from this ARIA winner and multi-platinum singer/songwriter. Lloyd has created a masterful release of his most critically acclaimed songs. The result is warmth and soul, with deep bass riffs, and rich acoustic guitar with Lloyd's distinctive timeless vocal style.
Alex Lloyd brings his acoustic set to Norwood Hotel October 5, 2016. Image supplied by Alex Lloyd
If you yearn for some honest, authentic sounds to alleviate your 'hump-day blues' on Wednesday, October 5th you need to go, chill, pour yourself a glass of something good, and be entertained by this disarming artist.
He has been living in London, writing for others, living a full life. Upon moving back to Australia with his family he started contemplating releasing an acoustic album, when Liberation Music, headed by Michael Gudinski approached him with this perfectly timed project. 'Acoustica' is the label's first long play album for 2016. The beautifully stripped back songs on 'Acoustica' offer Lloyd's stunning tunes with a whole new feel.
Alex Lloyd's Acoustica launch at Norwood Hotel, October 5th 2016. Image supplied
I interviewed Alex and enjoyed some fun stories about his inspiration.
Nat: these songs are soulful, raw and a couple of moments there left me breathless listening, like with Easy Exit Station where the cello line comes in. How do sounds like that come about after your original version?
Alex: "Thank you for that. The last couple of years I've been going out on my own with the acoustic guitar, doing solo acoustic songs when Liberation Music asked me to record this album...it just came together really quickly. I gave myself a 3 week deadline. Everything had to come very natural. I think that's where the clarity came from. Everything had a natural progression. The strings I gave to Sarah Belkner who nailed every brief I gave her. She'll be playing with me in Adelaide. We'll also have Kristen Lee Morris from Eagle and the Wolf, playing resonator, slide guitar and a nice little delay atmospheric guitar. We have solid backing vocals with these players too."
Nat: I feel like I am hearing a lot of the real Alex Lloyd in these recordings. It's as though this is how you might have wanted to release them from the start.
Alex: "Maybe. That was then, this is now. I don't know. I've lived with the songs for a long time. I've felt these songs for a long time and I know them very well. I had two rules. Don't over-complicate. And don't stay too long on it. And I just used one microphone. I was in a room and I borrowed a very expensive microphone from a friend of mine, which is very old school, and I wanted to feel like it was me in your living room at midnight or 4pm after a bbq playing songs - and there happens to be a string quartet and piano player!"(laughs)
Nat: The feel is fantastic. Better the Less You Know - your new version is pared down. You've got that heavy bass feel. Alex: "It kind of lends itself to a bit of Etta James. She'd use these random words to make a song. I used to sing the 'ding dang' line(from Better the Less..) to my third child Elvis, in the car when I dropped off the older boys to school. If he was getting restless or crying. I'd start singing 'dang-a-ding-a-dong-dang..' he would chill out and he'd be happy, so it's like his song really."
With Kristen Lee Morris, who joins Lloyd in Adelaide on October 5th. Image supplied
Alex: I don't write because a record company asks me to write an album. I write if I've got something to say, or feel. I'm not saying what I have to say is profound (laughs). I'm just saying I have to feel what I'm saying. As far as music is concerned, it's taken my whole life to work it out. And I really feel like I'm getting my stride again, and I'm writing new stuff again. I just feel like this is an interlude - 'Acoustica' - into something new. Something a bit different maybe."
Nat: There is beautiful poetry that comes across in the way you write. I really appreciate the way the words flow. The poetry is a bit Dylan-like. Your voice on this album is like the classic artists - blues, soul from a bygone era. The sound is exposed. Maybe it's the microphone, but more likely it's that pure voice. The sound is more vulnerable and open, like with the first release, Coming Home.
Alex: "I'm very lucky my parents played a lot of Dylan. I remember falling asleep under the dinner table while the adults were chatting listening to Dylan, so I was very lucky in that sense I was given such beautiful music from my parents."
It's been a while but Lloyd is at home on stage. Image supplied
Nat: As a parent yourself, is there a type of music you play at home? Do your kids listen to Alex Lloyd?
Alex: They listen to Alex Lloyd in the car because I'll reference my mixes in the car. At home when they go to bed I play Chopin. We play anything from Chopin to ACDC, into Underworld. I like something for what the song is, I don't discriminate. I love a good pop song as much as I like a classical tune, or a good opera, or a good blues tune. Dirty old Robert Johnson, or acoustic guitar. I'm the guy who likes both the Rolling Stones AND the Beatles!"
"I get a feeling for music. I woke up the other night at 3am, my daughter was stirring. I wait about 5 minutes to see if she re-settles, or if I need to get up. All of a sudden 'Sly and the Family Stone' came into my head. I'm sitting in bed thinking I just want to hear Que Sera so I found it on iTunes and downloaded it in the middle of the night.(laughs) Maybe it's because she's a girl and the first line is 'when I was just a little girl...'"
Nat: Bring us into the studio, and the recording of Acoustica.
Have a listen to the new album. CDs available on the night. Image supplied
Alex: "I slept in the studio. I left home for 3 weeks...the couch in the back became a bed. I slept through the day sometimes and would wake at midnight. I had stuff to do and I'd just do it. Then I sent stuff away to people like Stu Hunter on keys. He's on all the bluesy tracks. And on classical piano Barbara Griffin did all that. I did all the double bass, guitar and vocals myself. I was originally a bass player when I first started."
Nat: Is there something you want to say to Adelaide?
Alex: Just have a listen. Get a Spotify account. You don't have to buy it unless you want it.
Nat: I am going say, have a listen. You will want to see him live. Then buy a CD from Alex Lloyd. Immensely looking forward to this concert, especially as recording artists from the album join Lloyd in Adelaide. You will love the feel of 'Acoustica'. Get onto Spotify, and listen to 'Acoustica'. You will want to grab some friends and be at the Norwood on Wednesday, October 5th. Tickets are only $29 unless you want to get some dinner too. Get on the dance floor. Every type of fun is happening already on tour, like a gymnast in Townsville somersaulting across the dance floor. That's what his music does to people! While cartwheels may or may not be your thing, this much is certain. You will love the reworked sounds on this album. Get yourself a CD. Alex will sign it for you, and he'll take a selfie with you. He did tell me this, for the record.
And there's something new brewing on the horizon, so listen out for that too!
Look out for Adelaide, and following dates:
6th FREMANTLE FLAY BY NIGHT
7th HIGHWAY HOTEL BUNBURY
8th THE CARINE HOTEL DUNCRAIG
9th THE DUNSBOROUGH TAVERN