Bill Chambers: Drifting South (Whitewater)

 |   |  1 min read

Bill Chambers: Tail Lights
Bill Chambers: Drifting South (Whitewater)

Bill Chambers -- quite apart from being the father of singer-songwriter Kasey and producer Nash -- is one of Australia's great singer-songwriters whose work just seems to be getting deeper and more resonant.

He is suitably road-grizzled these days and his work (just a reference point) sits somewhere between Paul Kelly, Kris Kristofferson and Greg Brown. Here he sings of "deisel and driftwood',  disappearing taillights as "Townes is singing of Lefty", Magnolia wind (by Guy Clark), Southend Rain, a lost-soul friend who was listening to Neil Young on the day he died ("there's no heart of gold in this world") and a Jesus on the dashboard.

You get the picture.

Kasey comes out from harmony singing for their excellent version of James McMurtry's Deckhand's Daughter, Jim Moginie of Midnight Oil is on guitars and Bill plays most things (various guitars, mandolin, harmonica) himself.

His accent may not have travelled far from Australia but these songs also refer to the great universal imagery of Americana (with a digression into Ireland on Dashboard Jesus written by Kasey's husband Shane Nicholson) -- yet images of the lost highway, wide open spaces, shorelines and fishing boats belong as much in the Big Country as they do in Texas.

Chambers' slightly weary vocals brings these lyrics to life (just as Guy Clark, Tom Russell and his other American peers do) and he also knows the value of kicking a little arse along the way (the swamp-rock of Drifting South).

Bill Chambers has lived the life and sings of it with conviction and credibility. He's a rare one --- and he plays in Auckland at the Thirsty Dog, Wednesday December 11.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2015; READERS' CHOICES

BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2015; READERS' CHOICES

And now for the big reveal. Recently we posted the Elsewhere “best of the year” list and also a “best of reissues”, and now comes the readers' chance to have their... > Read more

Beth Hart and Joe Bonamassa: Don't Explain (J&R Adventures)

Beth Hart and Joe Bonamassa: Don't Explain (J&R Adventures)

Janis Joplin would scare the daylight out of most sleeve sucking, infantile women pop singers cluttering the charts and few have taken her as a role model. Hart played Joplin in a stage... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

THE BARGAIN BUY: Little Feat; Original Album Series (Rhino)

THE BARGAIN BUY: Little Feat; Original Album Series (Rhino)

In a recent conversation with American guitarist David Becker -- who plays here next month -- he mentioned how the internet had made the whole of popular music history available to younger people.... > Read more

RM Hubbert: Sunbeam Melts the Hour (2012)

RM Hubbert: Sunbeam Melts the Hour (2012)

Okay, here's what you need to do. Just play the posted track, shut your eyes and try to pick where you think this piece might have come from. Don't read on. If you've done that and... > Read more