18:35 Friday 02 November 2012

Chuck enjoys a breath of fresh air on tour

Written byJAMES BRINDLE

AMERICANA singer-songwriter Chuck Ragan is bringing a unique tour of ‘real’ artists to the Midlands later this month.

Chuck Ragan
Chuck Ragan

The Revival Tour features Ragan, as well as a multi-national collection of amazing storytellers, including Australia’s Emily Barker, Canada’s Jay Malinowski from Bedouin Soundclash and Texan Rocky Votolato.

“In the last five years that I’ve had the opportunity of being on The Revival Tour, it’s been nothing but an invigorating breath of fresh air amongst the sea of live music out there today,” Ragan told the Mail.

“The revolving showcase of real music by real people in a simple grassroots fashion seems it originated in the old days from families and communities sharing music together.

“This is the simple ethic in live music events that we aim to revive.” Loosely structured in the form of old-fashioned folk musician get-togethers, The Revival Tour is an ensemble collective in which the musicians collaborate and jam.

Ragan said: “The Revival Tour has a special element in which one will never see the same show twice.

“The line-up changes regularly and the set changes regularly so it constantly adds something different to the vast amount of road shows out there around the world and offers an incredibly unique experience each and every time it comes around.

“The one thing that does stay consistent is this positive formula and attitude for a showcase and a communal feel.

“It is something that is out there and can be found at many festivals and in many different musical genres but is something that I feel has gotten lost here and there along the way.

“It’s a very old and pure way of sharing and showcasing music and it immediately bonds and unites the people on the stage and the people who come to support this movement.”

Among the artists who have performed on the tour before is Frank Turner, who has played it three times, and Ragan said he has nothing but respect for this year’s acts.

He said: “I have a massive amount of respect for each and every one of them. I believe in their music, their ethics and truly feel blessed to have the opportunity to collaborate with any of them in any capacity.

“Since the line-up is ever changing, it’s a constant surge and endless ebb and flow of influence from who I believe are some of today’s best songwriters and story tellers.”

Ragan has been touring the UK and Europe for nearly 15 years and he admitted it is tough being away from home.

He said: “I’ve grown in a lot of ways within communities overseas and have met life long friends along the way.

“It is far from home and my loved ones but that’s the nature of the beast. I appreciate it while I have it and know and respect that it could all be over tomorrow. For that I’m very grateful.

“We call it the blessing and the curse. You certainly get to see and experience things that the majority of the people I grew up with will never see but there’s always a price to pay.

“You must give to get and sometimes in doing so you give a little more than you actually need to where your friends and family as well as you suffer in a sense.

“It’s hard to explain but it just is what it is. I look forward to the end of the road or at least slowing down, raising children and living more simple but at this point in my life, it’s not that time.”

The Revival Tour arrives at Nottingham Rescue Rooms on November 15 and at Other Room in Birmingham the following night. See the venues for ticket details.

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