Q&A Scene: Matt Andersen

Are you at home at the moment or touring? 

On tour right now. I’ve just wrapped up a quick solo run in the UK and am starting the first of five nights with my band in the Netherlands.

How do you feel about touring?
I love being on the road. I always get itchy to get back out when I’ve had too much time off. Having the opportunity to travel and play music is something I can’t take for granted. I feel quite fortunate to be able to do what I do.

Last time we spoke you were starting off a 62 show tour with your band, The Bona Fide. How did that go? 
It was a fantastic tour. Great crowds, lots and familiar faces and lots of new ones. It was a change for me to travel with a band. It was a real treat to have such great musicians to share the stage with. We covered a lot of ground through North America. Saw more of the US than I ever have before. And no fights on the bus. A grand trip from all points of view.

Being on the road for so long, do you ever feel like the “walls are closing in” as suggested in your song “Break Away” from Honest Man?
Not on the road. That song refers more to being at home and needing a change. Being on the road is a very liberating way of life.

What is the story behind “Tell me who are you listening to?”? Who do you think people are listening to? When should people be supported in making up their own minds?
That story was pretty much inspired by people who seem to get their opinions from others, instead of forming their own. The biggest culprit to me is the copy-and-paste mentality of social media. Folks will spread information without even questioning where it’s coming from. People should always be supported in making up their own minds.

What are the stories behind some of the other songs on Honest Man?
One Good Song— all about how we as songwriters are always trying to write that song that everybody can connect to. Most of us will never have it but we all love to keep trying.
Honest Man— more of a politically charged tune on how it seems people get more excited by the “circus” side of politics than actually wanting to hear what the honest man has to say.

Which track was your most challenging/rewarding, and why?

I don’t know that rewarding is the word that describes it but recording “I’m Giving In” is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. I’ve never had a piano ballad on one of my albums before. I really love that moment on the album when it comes down to just the piano and my voice.

Who were your influences growing up?
Jim Croce, John Fogerty, Eric Clapton, Stan Rogers and Bonnie Raitt were all favorites of mine. Some for their vocals, some for their songs and some for their playing. I was a bit of a musical sponge growing up, still am really. Trying to soak up what I can from who I can.

How would you describe your music?
Roots and soul. It’s a combination of all the different influences I had growing up. I’ve never tried to associate myself with one genre, I find it restricting to think within that kind of box.

What was it like working with Santana and Quincy Jones?

Never have. Commissioner Gordon, who produced Honest Man, has worked with them.

What were your impressions/favourite moments in Australia?
I was lucky. My first tour of Australia was pretty extensive. I got to see a lot of the country. It felt a lot like home really. Long drives between shows with a variety of landscapes to take in.

What can your Australian fans expect from this tour?
I’ll be touring solo on this run. Playing songs from Honest Man as well as from my other albums. I always have fun with the crowds there. I’m excited to be coming back.

What’s next for you?
I’ll take a bit of time off after this tour then hit the road again in the new year. I’ll most likely be recording in the fall, so I’ll be working on songs in between stops along the way.

What is your scene?

Family, friends, food and music. Any mix of those is when I’m at my happiest.

“a powerhouse voice that could pack a football stadium” – The National Post

Canadian singer/songwriter Matt Andersen has enjoyed a busy 2016.  His latest album HONEST MAN, released back in February, received much critical acclaim and led to extensive tours in the US and Canada where he performed headline shows alongside numerous festival appearances.

“His stunning voice contains obvious traces of delta blues, but also the bawdy swagger of Stax and Motown, and his backing band complement it with gloriously peppy horn playing”  – Exclaim! 8/10

“Andersen’s soulful baritone is a gorgeous cross between Joe Cocker and Marc Cohn and yet that doesn’t completely do it justice. Andersen’s voice is pure greatness and Honest Man beautifully showcases his talents as a vocalist and a songwriter.” – Blues Rock Review

The late Northern summer saw him opening shows for the great Buddy Guy and Beth Hart, while October sees him head to the UK and Netherlands for another run of headline performances.  After that, he embarks on the long trip downunder for a very welcome return to Australian shores – including, for a first-time visit to Tasmania.

Apart from appearances for Mullum & Queenscliff Music Festivals, Matt has announced a run of solo shows on the East Coast and Tasmania – taking in Brisbane, Hobart, Devonport, Melbourne, Canberra, Sydney, Wollongong and Newcastle throughout November and into early December.  It’s a terrific opportunity to catch up with one of Canada’s very finest performers.


Thur 17 Nov The Milk Factory 

With guest Claire Anne Taylor

48 Montague Rd, West End QLD Ph 07 3217 2061

www.themilkfactorybar.com.au Doors 8pm.  Tix $20 + bf / $25 @ door.  Tix Here

Fri 18 – Sun 20 Nov

Mullum Music Festival


Wed 23 Nov Republic Bar

With guest Shaun Kirk

299 Elizabeth St, North Hobart TAS Ph 03 6234 6954


Doors 7.30pm.  Tix $20 + bf standing / $25 + bf seated / $25 @ door.  Tix Here

Thur 24 Nov Red Hot Music

With guest Shaun Kirk

10-12 Edward St, Devonport TAS Ph 03 6424 2286

www.redhotmusic.com.au Doors 7.30pm.  Tix $25.  Tix Here

Fri 25 Nov Memo Music Hall

With guest Shaun Kirk

88 Acland St, St Kilda VIC Ph 03 9534 3556


Doors 7.30pm.  Tix  $25 + bf standing / $30 + bf seated / $35 @ door.  Tix Here

Sat 26 – Sun 27 Nov

Queenscliff Music Festival


Tue 29 Nov The Front Gallery & Café 

With guest Mercy Seat

1 Wattle Place, Lyneham ACT Ph 02 6249 8453

www.frontgallerycafe.com Doors 6.30pm.   Tix $20 + bf / $25 @ door.  Tix Here

Thur 1 Dec Brass Monkey

With guest Shaun Kirk

115A Cronulla St, Cronulla NSW Ph 02 9544 3844

http://brassmonkey.com.au Doors 7pm.  Tix $20 + bf / $25 @ door.  Tix Here

Fri 2 Dec The Music Lounge

With guest Shaun Kirk

Wollongong Town Hall, Wollongong NSW Corner Kembla & Crown Sts

www.merrigong.com.au/shows/the-music-lounge.html Doors 7.30pm.  Tix Here

Sat 3 Dec The Basement

With guest Shaun Kirk

29 Reiby Pl, Circular Quay NSW Ph 02 9251 2797

www.thebasement.com.au Doors 7.30pm.  Tix $20 + bf / $25 @ door.  Tix Here

Sun 4 Dec Lizotte’s

With guest Shaun Kirk

31 Morehead St, Lambton NSW Ph 02 4956 2066

www.lizottes.com.au Doors 6pm.  Tix $20 + bf / $25 @ door.  Tix Here

Find our previous Q&A Scene with Matt here.

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About Mary Boukouvalas 1614 Articles
Mary is a photographer and a writer, specialising in music. She runs Rocklust.com where she endeavours to capture the passion of music in her photos whether it's live music photography, promotional band photos or portraits. She has photographed The Rolling Stones, KISS, Iggy Pop, AC/DC, Patti Smith, Joe Strummer, PULP, The Cult, The Damned, The Cure, Ian Brown, Interpol, MUDHONEY, The MELVINS, The Living End, Foo Fighters, Smashing Pumpkins, Rage Against The Machine, The Stone Roses –just to name a few - in Australia, USA, Europe and the Middle East. Her work has been published in Beat magazine, Rolling Stone magazine, Triple J magazine, The Age Newspaper, The Herald Sun, The Australian, Neos Kosmos, blistering.com, theaureview.com, noise11.com, music-news.com. She has a permanent photographic exhibition at The Corner Hotel in Richmond, Victoria Australia.