So on Sunday, I managed to score tickets to Xavier Rudd’s “White Moth Tour” at the Gold Coast Convention Centre; as usual, Xavier was fantastic. His set was perhaps more aggressive than I’ve seen in the past, but that only urged the crowd on all the more.
However, this post is not about Xavier Rudd; everyone already knows how talented he is, and if you don’t, you really should check out his site, or listen at his myspace. Instead, I wanted to write a quick post about his opening act, Jeremy Fisher.
Fisher has already become a mini-celebrity on Youtube, thanks to the music video (which he made himself), for his song, “Cigarette”. Take a look at this superb video, bearing in mind that each frame is an individual photo (talk about painstaking!) below:
Fisher is no stranger to putting in a lot of effort to getting his music out there though; in 2002, he biked across the entire width of Canada, from Seattle to Halifax, Nova Scotia to promote his first album, Back Porch Spirituals. The journey took 6 months, 30 official shows, a number of impromptu performances, and honest-to-goodness old school busking. This is a kid that’s not afraid of work.
Despite all of this, it’s only now that the music of Jeremy Fisher is finally beginning to reach a larger audience. Now, onto the performance in question…
He opened up the night to a crowd that was still trickling in. His first words were, “I thought I’d start now, before too many people come in… you know, and spoil the whole intimacy that we have right now”. I knew right there that this guy was going to be fun.
His first song was the beautiful “Left Behind”, which was the perfect way to begin the night. This song reminded me of a young Paul Simon, with his dexterous fingerpicking and boyish voice. That influence was confirmed later in the night, when Fisher performed a cover of Simon’s “The Boxer” (how could I not love this kid?).
Throughout the night though, Fisher showed his other influences; Dylan was an obvious one, especially in the “Hurricane Carter-ish” opening chords of “Lay Down (Ballad of Rigoberto Alpizar)”. It became clear that Jeremy Fisher believes that music needs to say something… in fact, he’s said previously that both his song “American Girls” (dealing with the mistreatment of Iraqui prisoners at Abu Ghraib), and “The Ballad of Rigoberto Alpizar” “are both about events that are monumental but not nearly as important as the fact that a certain superstar wasn’t wearing underwear when she got out of a limo. This is a very weird culture we live in.”
I also noticed a bit of Hawksley Workman in there; not a big surprise, when I found out that Hawksley was actually the producer on his latest album, “Goodbye Blue Monday“.
Enough about influences; let’s get down to the real stuff. He’s a fantastically fun performer, sparring with the audience the entire way through his set. There’s something about this guy.
He’s obviously seen a lot, but there’s still this innocence and optimism that he projects, that eventually drags you in. It really is impossible to resist. He gives you hope. He gives you strength. And you know that things are going to be ok, as long as we join him in his stand.
I ran down to the merch table to get the CD. A couple of guys were running up as I got there. We all just looked at each other and smiled. And that’s the gift that Jeremy Fisher gives to us.
Here are a few songs below. Listen. Love. Support.
Listen: Jeremy Fisher – Left Behind
Listen: Jeremy Fisher – Lay Down (Ballad of Rigoberto Alpizar)
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