Tell us about your new single/ album/ tour?
My new album The Last Day of Winter came out in May this year, so I’ve been touring around the country with Alison Ferrier to launch the record. Most of the songs fit somewhere between folk, country and rock music I suppose, with a few other elements thrown in. The album was recorded in Melbourne with great team – we had Jeff Lang producing and Justin Bernasconi and Cat Canteri of The Stillsons as the backing band, so the sound features lots of guitars (slide, acoustic and electric) and three part vocal harmonies.
How would you describe your sound in food form and why?
A slow cooked lamb roast, because hopefully it’s substantial and satisfying, with a hint of something familiar about it.
Which song resonates most strongly and why
A lot of people seem to like the track “Black Rain” which is about Coal Seam Gas mining. I wrote it from the point of view of a farmer who sells the family farm to a mining company so hopefully it comes across as a human story rather than being too preachy.
Any on the road anecdotes?
It’s not unusual to lose stuff on tour – you’re loading and unloading the van every night, moving all your gear in and out of venues and accommodation so things like phones, wallets, music gear etc can get lost pretty easily. Never lost a van before though, which is what happened on this tour. We were playing in Newtown, Sydney and Justin went to grab some gear from the van and didn’t come back for ages. It was getting close to show time and we were starting to worry that he’d been mugged or something – he didn’t have a phone on him so we couldn’t get in touch with him. He eventually came back to the venue and told us he’d been wandering the streets the whole time looking for the van but couldn’t find it. After another half an hour or so of roaming through the winding maze of the Newtown backstreets we found the van and made it back just in time to play the gig.
Where do you draw inspiration from?
All sorts of places – my life, other people’s lives, reading books, good music.
What’s next for you?
Alison Ferrier and I have a combined Melbourne album launch show at The Bella Union on August 1st with a great band featuring Justin Bernasconi and Cat Canteri and a bunch of special guests, so I’m really looking forward to that. Then Alison and I have shows in Ararat, Adelaide and The Barossa Valley. Once the tour’s done I’m looking forward to getting into some songwriting again – I can feel some stored up ideas just waiting to come out! I’m also hoping to get back to Europe in the next year or so.
About Jed Rowe
The Last Day Of Winter is the follow up album to Jed Rowe’s critically acclaimed The Ember and The Afterglow (2012), and will be released on Friday 29th May through WJO distribution.
Whilst the new record retains Rowe’s signature electric slide guitar playing, Rowe was also keen to expand his creative palette beyond the power trio format of bass, drums and guitars.
Enlisting ARIA award winner Jeff Lang for the second time as producer, Rowe also brought in Cat Canteri and Justin Bernasconi from The Stillsons. Both had worked with Lang on other projects over the past year, and Rowe felt that this dynamic team would help create the right environment for his songwriting and performances to find their mark. Rowe himself also picked up some completely new instruments in the piano and fiddle.
The result is a diverse collection of songs which focus on Rowe’s deft touch with story and melody, with an emotional depth that resonates after the final note falls away. Rowe’s guitar talents are pushed to new heights by both Lang’s and Bernasconi’s supporting guitar roles; and three-part vocal harmonies reign throughout. Producer Lang gets creative with textured percussion loops underpinning several tracks.
TOURING JUNE/JULY/AUG WITH ALISON FERRIER
Saturday 1st August – Bella Union, Melbourne VIC
Friday 21st August – Ararat Live, Ararat VIC