Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Clip: Australia's Paul Kelly takes on America

Expand Messages
  • Carl Zimring
    http://u.sbsun.com/Stories/0,1413,216~24307~2041410,00.html Australia s Paul Kelly takes on America By Sandra Barrera Staff Writer People are always asking
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 29, 2004
    • 0 Attachment

      Australia's Paul Kelly takes on America

      By Sandra Barrera
      Staff Writer

      People are always asking Australian troubadour Paul Kelly about the words
      to his songs.

      And he's always giving them the same answer: ``The music throws up the

      Sounds messy.

      But this is the way most of the 48-year-old singer-songwriter's tracks were
      penned on ``Ways and Means,'' Kelly's new double CD that Rolling Stone
      hails as ``overflowing with catchy hooks and stick-in-your-gourd lyrics.''

      The new album is the follow-up to 2001's ``Nothing but a Dream,'' which led
      the Aussie edition of Rolling Stone to crown Kelly a ``profound observer of
      simple things.''

      Love, simple?

      Not in the storytelling songs featured in his newest set, which feels more
      like two separate albums anyway. Disc one is a more raucous set in that it
      focuses on love's beginnings, such as in the happy-go-lucky ballad
      ``Beautiful Feeling.''

      That song grew around drummer Peter Luscombe's easy beat and the sunny
      groove it inspired.

      ``It just had this falsetto, soulful kind of Eddie Floyd vibe to it,''
      Kelly says, referring to the Memphis soul singer who recorded for Stax.
      ``It suggests upbeat lyrics so the first thing I started singing was the

      On disc two, Kelly's songs are more atmospheric as they wallow in the
      fallout of love.

      Take ``You Broke a Beautiful Thing,'' which Kelly originally wrote for
      Renee Gayer, the Australian soul singer who's ``got lots of Aretha
      (Franklin) and Donny Hathaway in her voice. You should hear her version,''
      he says.

      Combined, the double album ``evokes a variety of moonstruck moods,'' USA
      Today writes.

      That's to be expected.

      In the last 20 years, Kelly has turned out a string of albums, including
      1987's ``Gossip,'' which introduced the folk-rocker to America.

      Here he's an unsung songwriter.

      Back home, Kelly can work with anyone he wants to.

      Born in the town of Adelaide, the sixth of nine children, Kelly initially
      dreamed of becoming a writer.

      Poetry and short stories eventually gave way to songwriting when at age 18
      he got his first guitar.

      He's been hooked ever since.

      >From the time he began performing, Kelly has formed and disbanded several
      groups of musicians just to keep the music fresh.

      ``At the same time, I like being in bands with the same people over long
      periods of time because I think that's the way you develop a unique
      sound,'' he says.

      Blues, country, rock, r&b _ Kelly has played songs in every imaginable
      style and about every imaginable subject matter.

      In the last decade, he's broadened his music scope to include composing
      soundtracks for both television and film.

      His credits include the Ray Lawrence film ``Lantana,'' which starred
      Anthony LaPaglia and Geoffrey Rush.

      For Kelly, soundtrack work affords him a break from having to come up with

      ``You make up melodies or sounds without having to think it has to turn
      into a song, which is great,'' he says. ``I always have more music than I
      have lyrics anyway.''

      On the new album, Kelly's love of instrumentals is apparent.

      ``We did a lot of jamming and came up with a lot of tunes that I didn't put
      lyrics to,'' Kelly says.

      And because he always liked the way Neil Young's self-titled release from
      1969 opened with ``The Emperor of Wyoming,'' a Western-tinged instrumental,
      he decided to model his record after it.

      Only his two offerings suggest water and surf, which Kelly says ``is very
    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.