Based more usually in Johannesburg, he plays Shoreham’s Ropetackle on Monday, June 6 to promote his new studio album Introvertigo: “We spent quite a lot of time in the UK last year – touring, not really vacationing,” he said. “It is becoming quite a frequent stopping-off place. I think the UK definitely seems to be quite a hot-spot for the kind of music I am playing. The blues rock scene is really strong. It feels that the scene has got a really fantastic fan base for the kind of music I want to do. You also see a lot of US blues players performing in the UK. They really enjoy it too.”
Of course, the blues encompasses a great deal.
“I would say that I am maybe blues rock. I draw from a lot of classic rock influences including progressive rock influences such as Pink Floyd and Emerson Lake and Palmer. But I would say what I do is like a modern genre of the blues. I think every genre morphs as time goes by, but I think one of the great things about the blues is that it has got such soul and feeling that the artist is bound to come through. It is one of those very honest forms of music, and that’s why it is exciting.”
Introvertigo is an album which comes with both a striking title and a striking cover image: “Introvertigo is the feeling that an introvert gets when he spends more than five minutes with an extrovert. The extrovert just sucks out all his energy.”
Hence the cover image, a guy with his head in the sand – but at the same time a guy on fire.
“The guy is trying to hide from people and from society, and the fire on his back symbolises the self-destructive potential that we have all got inside us. Those are the two main elements we were wanting to put across. But really the main thing was that we were wanting to do a Pink Floyd-feeling cover. I have always found Pink Floyd covers intriguing. You see the cover, and it just makes you want to listen to the music.
“Introvertigo as a word is not actually in the Oxford dictionary, but you can find it in the urban dictionary. I found it about six months ago, and I just loved the phrase. I am an introvert at heart. I have experienced introvertigo with certain people. You get almost like a claustrophobic feeling. You start feeling woozy, maybe even dizzy. You start feeling light-headed. I haven’t met many people that make me feel like that, but I have met a couple and they just draw all the energy out of you. You switch off and you find yourself thinking about something else.
“But I don’t think an introvert is always what people think it is. For me it is not necessarily someone that locks himself in his house and never wants to go out. For me an introvert is someone that enjoys being by himself and being alone. I enjoy the quieter moments.”
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