Stuart: “So far, I would have to say the two “biggies” have been touring with Eddie Floyd, who is a lifelong hero and, also working in the studio with legendary producer Mike Vernon at the helm. Two really nice people and it was as much of an honour to work with them for that reason as it was to work with them because they are both absolute legends! I got to tour with Eddie Floyd as part of a tour called “This Is Soul” when I was playing with Geno Washington. Pauline Black from The Selecter was also on the tour. I got the job with Geno through Silas Maitland, bassist with 24 Pesos, who I was playing alongside with Marcus Malone for a short while.”
BM Blogger: You were on The Blues Session radio show recently. What is it like playing live on the radio?
Stuart: “Yeah, that was with Dani Wilde, who is just awesome…I’m a huge fan who just also gets to play guitar in her band basically, and Will Wilde, who is not only an incredible harmonica player/writer/singer/performer, but a pretty damn sickeningly good all round musician as well, who plays drums, percussion and also guitar that makes me watch my back…people don’t realise, but wow, when they do….!! The Blues Session was so much fun to do. Martin Clarke and Heather Harrison really made us feel so welcome and were so lovely, we forgot we were live really, we just felt very much at home. Just a fantastic vibe in the studio with them. We liked it so much, we’ll be back sometime, all being well. It’s just great…they bring cakes in and all sorts!!”
BM Blogger: What music/bands are you mainly listening to at the moment?
Stuart: “Right now, I’m listening to a lot of rootsy Americana and soul stuff, also a bit of jazz. I have “Hope” by Foy Vance in my car, I have “God Willing And The Creek Don’t Rise” by Ray Lamontagne And The Pariah Dogs on my turntable at home and “Water” by Gregory Porter in my CD player. I’m also LOVING Gary Clark Jnr BIG TIME, but haven’t got round to buying his EP yet…that’s next on the list, without a doubt!”
BM Blogger: What is the thing that meant the most to you that anyone has ever said about your music?
Stuart: “I remember recording a song that I co-wrote with a friend of mine back in the late 90s and I took a copy of it to a friend’s place. There was a girl in there who I didn’t know. I played the song on the hifi system and when it was finished, everyone was silent, except for this girl, who was quietly sobbing in the corner. That maybe doesn’t count in response to your question, but to be honest, that was probably the most profound musical experience I ever had, seeing someone actually moved to tears by something I’ve helped create. Words weren’t needed. It was quite moving.”
BM Blogger: If you had a time machine, what moment in Blues history would you like to be at?
Stuart: “I would have LOVED to have been at Antones’ Club in Austin, Texas in the late 70s/early 80s. That place just had EVERYONE who was anyone playing. ALL my heroes played there. I would have just wanted to have BEEN there!! Does that count as a moment…?”
BM Blogger: A musical career involves a lot of travelling. What do you do to pass the time?
Stuart: “Driving usually haha!!! If I’m not driving I usually either take a book with me and try and zone out for a bit, or I take plenty of comedy CDs etc. Nothing better than a bit of comedy on the road!” Read about Stuart’s progress with Marcus Malone in the feature on Marcus in our latest issue of Blues Matters, available here: www.bluesmatters.com/subscriptions