Sometimes the saying goes ‘less is more’, though that doesn’t seem to be the case when it comes to the John Butler Trio, whose lead vocalist/guitarist puts an 11 string guitar at the centre of every song to create a big big sound. The John Butler Trio also comprises a double bass player, and drummer, and together they have proved to be quite a success story. It was suggested to me that I check out their song ‘Zebra’ on youtube recently, which in case you haven’t guessed, turned out to be a very worthy recommendation.
The video I found was of the band performing ‘Zebra’ at an Australian benefit concert called ‘Wave Aid’, and from the looks of it their sound was more than enough to fill the big arena. Zebra has a strong Australian twang throughout the music, which is a toe-tapping mix of roots, blues, funk, and acoustic sounds. There are plenty of hooks to remember, some interesting scat singing, and a lyrical story all about ‘opposites’. It took me a little while to cotton on, but the title comes from a Zebra saying ‘am I white with black stripes, or black with white stripes’, and there is an impressive number of opposites following on from the title in the lyrics. These include “I could be asleep or I could be awake” and “I could be a gentlemen, I could be violent”.
Reviewing brings you into contact with all kinds of music, and you focus more on the instruments and how they’re working in the music. It never fails to amaze me the different things some people can do with a guitar! This track kept me engaged from start to finish, and on that basis I would certainly go and listen to more of their material.
The line-up and music coming from The John Butler Trio is ever evolving. To keep up with all the latest news and tunes, surf on over to www.thejohnbutlertrio.com