It is often said that hard times, or difficult times, bring forth the best music. You know – Woody and the Dust Bowl, the Civil Rights Movement and Dylan, Thatcherism and Bucks Fizz. Or should that be Billy Bragg? Anyway, that kind of thing. It does sometimes make one pause and wonder if the hard times are worth going through just to get the music, but then if they’re unavoidable at least having someone who’ll stand up and be counted, point a few fingers and tell a few home truths makes them a little easier to take. The craziness of the last couple of years has thrown up more than a few protest singers worth the name, but none more worthy than Joe Purdy.
If the title of last year’s album Who Will Be Next seemed to be tapping right into the unusual American Presidential election – although the title song was actually about gun control, or the lack of it – then nothing that’s happened since has made it any less relevant. The disarming honesty of Children of Privilege points out the uncomfortable truth that skin colour can still determine your life chances; My Country tackles the problems of being poor in a rich country – and climate change, and the fate of Native Americans, and overseas interventions. There’s a lot to think about, and Joe Purdy doesn’t shy away from it. This is the music he’ll be bringing to a UK and Ireland tour starting at the end of this month. A true troubadour, and not to be missed.
MAY 30 TUE Latest Music Bar Brighton
MAY 31 WED Bush Hall London
JUN 2 FRI The Brudenell Games Room Leeds
JUN 3 SAT King Tut’s Glasgow
JUN 4 SUN Mash House Edinburgh
JUN 5 MON Voodoo Belfast
JUN 6 TUE The Workmans Club Dublin
JUN 8 THU Soup Kitchen Manchester
JUN 9 FRI The Portland Arms Cambridge
JUN 12 MON Red Room Nottingham
JUN 13 TUE Fibbers York
JUN 15 THU The Horn St Albans