Graham Reid | | 4 min read
Hats off to Wellington-based expat Scot Frank Burkitt who is ambitiously taking his folk band on an extensive national tour . . . and we do mean extensive (see dates and venues below).
Not only are they taking their melange of folk, blues, country, bluegrass and Scottish songs to many of the smaller venues but at a few there is a koha entry and others are free.
Burkitt learned his craft playing pubs in his native Edinburgh but has also toured in Australia and the US, recorded a couple of solo albums and goes out now with the debut album by the Frank Burkitt Band, Fools and Kings.
Timely then for Mr Burkitt to answer our Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire . . .
The first piece of music which really affected you was . . .
The Clair De lune by Claude Debussy. I had it on tape when I was around 12 or 13 years old and I must’ve listened to it a million times.
Your first (possibly embarrassing) role models in music were . . .
Not too embarrassing. Tony Bennett and Frank Sinatra were possibly the first. I loved all the crooners.
Lennon or Jagger, Ramones or Nirvana, Madonna or Gaga, Jacko or Jay-Z?
Lennon, Neither the Ramones nor Nirvana (not my bag). Madonna and obviously Jacko.
If music was denied you, your other career choice would be…
I’d love to be a fly fishing guide but don’t think I’d ever get good enough so Astronaut.
The three songs (yours, or by others) you would love everyone to hear are ….
Step by Step by Jesse Winchester, Beeswing by Richard Thompson and Soon or Never by the Punch Brothers.
Any interesting, valuable or just plain strange musical memorabilia at home…
Not really one for collecting things but my eldest brother bought me a horrendously cheesy Frank Sinatra T-shirt which gathers dust in one of my drawers.
The best book on music or musicians you have read is . . .
Honestly can’t remember the last book on musicians I read but did recently watch the documentary ‘Who was Harry Nilsson?’ and it blew me away. Everyone should listen to Harry Nilsson’s albums before they die.
If you could get on stage with anyone it would be?
The Rat Pack or Tim O’Brien.
The three films you'd insist anybody watch because they might understand you better are . . .
Scent of a Woman, The Big Lebowski and Local Hero.
The last CD or vinyl album you bought was . . . (And your most recent downloads include...)
The last CD I bought was the Wellington City Shake ‘em on Downers and the last download was the album Beachcomber’s Windowsill by a band called Stornoway.
One song, royalties for life, never have to work again. The song by anyone, yourself included, which wouldn't embarrass you in that case would be . . .
Well, being a songwriter I’d have to choose one of mine for this. If ‘Waste of Space’ the title track on our new album ‘Fools and Kings’ became a world hit then I could definitely live with that, zero embarrassment.
The poster, album cover or piece of art could you live with on your bedroom forever would be . . .
The Kiss by Gustav Klimt has been on my bedroom wall (my lady Kara’s touch) for most of my adult life now and I wouldn’t change it.
You are allowed just one tattoo, and it is of . . .
a brown trout.
David Bowie sang, “Five years, that's all we've got . . .” You would spend them where and doing what?
If I only had 5 years, I would spend them in a very secluded but large log cabin with selected family and friends, situated near the best back country NZ has to offer and fish and drink myself to death.
And finally, in the nature of press conferences in Japan, “Can you tell me please why this is your best album ever?”
Quite simply because I have put more work into this album than my previous two by a long way. I believe my song-writing is also the best it has been in my life and there’s a great variation in styles.
No two songs are the same really.
Combine that with the fact the band have really helped me out by rehearsing so hard and putting up with all my crap and I think that’s why I’m so proud of this album. Sexy as artwork too.
FRANK BURKITT BAND NEW ZEALAND TOUR
Wednesday 11th November – Rogue and Vagabond, Wellington
Friday 13th November - Levin Folk Club - Tickets available on the door for $10 (includes a light supper)
Saturday 14th November - Studio 64, Inglewood, New Plymouth
Sunday 15th November - Nikau Caves and Cafe, Waikaretu
Wednesday 18th November - Nivara Lounge, Hamilton
Thursday 19th November - The Wine Cellar, Auckland
Saturday 21st November - The Old Butter Factory, Whangerai
Sunday 22nd November - The Boathouse, Riverhead - Free Entry,
Thursday 26th November - Luke’s Kitchen, Whitianga, Kuaotunu – Free Entry
Friday 27th November - Eggsentric Cafe, Cook’s Beach
Saturday 28th November - The Hop House, Tauranga - Free Entry
Sunday 29th November - Tauranga Acoustic Music Club, Tauranga
Monday 30th November-Devonport Folk Club Auckland
Thursday 3rd December - Common Room, Hastings - Koha Entry
Friday 4th December-The Rogue Stage, Rotorua
5th December - The Cabana Bar, Napier - Frank Burkitt solo performance
Friday 11th December-Fairfield House, Nelson
Saturday 12th December - The Mussel Inn, Onekaka
Sunday 13th December - The Golden Bear Brewery, Mapua
Tuesday 15th December - Barrytown Hall, Greymouth
16th December- Orange Studios, Christchurch (Live recording)
Thursday 17th December- Carey’s Bay Hotel, Dunedin
Friday 18th December - The Hilltop Tavern, Little River
Saturday 19th December - The Gin and Raspberry, Wanaka - Koha Entry
Sunday 20th December - The Fork and Tap, Arrowtown - Free Entry