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Home arrow Podcast arrow Bill Jackson spins 'Diggin The Roots'
Bill Jackson spins 'Diggin The Roots' PDF Print E-mail
Release Date:
21 February 2007
Bill Jackson Interview
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Matt Dwyer and Salty Dog Interview
Bill Jackson is the genuine article. A roots singer songwriter from Australia who mixes up roots, rock and a taste of alt. country into a very fine brew. This interview covers his influences and experiences, Bill talks about the trials of songwriting and of course, his 'Diggin The Roots' CD is featured throughout. Great listening. Recorded in Melbourne, Australia on 16th December 2006.

'Take a chance and hear some genuine ground breaking roots influenced music that cuts across borders...' (Keith Glass - Capital News)

Web: www.myspace.com/billjacksonmusic

Purchase: www.cdbaby.com

From the snowbound streets of Nashville and the smoky bars of Austin to the Tapas Bars of Andalucia and the Troubador in London, Bill Jackson has been documenting his stories in song out on the fringes of Melbourne’s music scene for what must seem like forever to him.

He remembers sitting in a publisher’s office on Music City Row and thinking…maybe this is it…but that was a long time ago and it wasn’t… He remembers rubbing shoulders with Willis Alan Ramsay, Don Schlitz and Lee Clayton in those dirty Nashville writers’ dives and slumping into his bed at the Sir John Robertson Hotel next to the old Ryman Auditorium – wondering if the right lines and melody would ever materialise…maybe they have but you weren’t listening…

He remembers The Hole in the Wall and Armadillo World Headquarters in Austin and how it inspired him in that city of eclectic musical freaks…how he just had to get out of London…chilled him to the bone and froze his writer’s pen…

He remembers the characters, friends, artists and lovers who have shaped his life and…he remembers how Bob changed his life with the crack of a snare and a big Hammond Organ – sixty ideas in three minutes…how he helped him understand Woody, Ramblin’ Jack, Cisco, Big Bill and a thousand others who gave us a legacy and a belief in doing…

He treasures a group of artist’s on our South East Coast who called themselves Lonesome Rex by night and produce statements of artistic beauty by day…listened to his songs…kept taking him back to his roots…to a simplicity in structure – complexity was in the heart of the beholders they said…he shared their food, wine, stories, good humour and visions…

Through it all he kept on writing and recording – four albums with Urban Nomads and ‘The Hurting Sessions’ with Mark McSherry – never really taking it out there…internalising his passion…writing…writing…and now…

It’s all come down to this…Bill Jackson doing it for himself – always believing that the ‘process far outweighs the end result’…then turning an emotional full circle and producing an album full of the rich stuff that we could hang our hats on and just maybe need to hear. You will find yourself somewhere in one of his songs…just maybe he was watching you…

You will love what producer Marcel Yammouni has done with these Jackson songs on 'Diggin The Roots'. You will love the playing of the BigRhythm - Shannon Bourne, Bruce Haymes, Daniel Xuerub, Damien Boyd and Marcel Yammouni – they come at it from the core of the lyric and out into your favourite space … check out this stuff and 'Dig Your Roots'...


Dave Dawson
Beat Magazine (Oct 2006)
"I'm in the middle of Hobohemia waiting for a train/ my livelihood depends on crops, I'm counting on the rain/ my education don't mean nothing in these hard times/ I fill the boxes with fruit and I fill my head with rhymes." - Hobohemia - Bill Jackson.

Albury born, Sale reared singer-songwriter Bill Jackson had big advances on peers - he first visited Texas hot spot Austin before it was popular with faddists.

Jackson didn't have government grants or record company cash when he invaded the Lone Star State capital in the late seventies and eighties. But he enjoyed post nuptials of Willie Nelson's redneck-hippie shotgun wedding that gave birth to a progressive Texas sound in Jan Reid's book The Improbable Rise Of Redneck Rock. It's a sturdy sub genre that has outlived faux country fly by night vampires and refried rockers singing flat with grunge guitars. So when Jackson sings about being in Austin "hanging out at the Armadillo, smoking joints and writing songs in perfect harmony," in the searing Hole In The Chicken Wire he hasn't pillaged it from a cyber chat room. That memory is carved in Jackson's solo disc Diggin' The Roots (Soundvault) that he launches at East Brunswick Club Hotel on Wednesday October 11. He namechecks famed but long defunct Armadillo World HQ and aptly named Hole In The Wall that has spanned four decades.

Equally importantly the Melbourne University educated some time teacher enriches realism by daubing his timeless tableau with slices from his three siblings' lives and backing vocals by Olivia Nathan.The hole in the chicken wire is not a hollow metaphor but entre to a world that pre-dated his cassette recording debut with the Lamington Bros in 1981 on expatriate Australasian Barry Coburn's South Of The Border Records. For trivia buffs expat Kiwi Peter Bain-Hogg - executive producer of SBS smash hit Rockwiz - sold Jackson's cassette from the boot of a Fiat 124 at Royal Melbourne Showgrounds during Shotgun Willie's debut Australasian tour. Sales stimulus for Jackson's tune was companion song - Dead Livers Nelson eulogy Love To Have A Joint With Willie that broke the commercial radio country boycott. Jackson has a hot band - guitarist Shannon Bourne, bassists Marcel Yammouni and Damien Boyd, drummer Daniel Xuerub, organist Bruce Haymes who shares pianist duties with Marcel. Mornington singer Anna Wright joins Jackson on Lucy's Life - a poignant vignette that sets the mood for the driving passion of Ghost In The Limousine. Jackson sings of John Lee Hooker in the former and Robert Johnson in the latter - a dream sequence. "We started out with good intentions but now we're nothing but rock stars."

He owes more to Tony Joe White than blues peers trapped in delta quicksand - "if this is the future, well, I don't like it one bit/ looks like peace, love and understanding take another hit."

Bill explores the flip side of love in Lucky When I Left and injects melodic Enigma with a poetic beauty - "just like Mona Lisa you always keep me guessing/ hanging in that beautiful space between leaving and a blessing." Equally evocative Hobohemia - a beatific ballad with Mornington singer Anna Wright - and pathos primed biblical Gippsland sourced sibling Settlement Road.

Matt Dwyer Salty Dog InterviewMatt Dwyer Salty Dog InterviewMatt Dwyer Salty Dog InterviewMatt Dwyer Salty Dog InterviewMatt Dwyer Salty Dog Interview Matt Dwyer Salty Dog Interview Matt Dwyer Salty Dog Interview Matt Dwyer Salty Dog Interview Matt Dwyer Salty Dog Interview
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