Oct 10 2011 Chester Chronicle
DEVON’S finest troubadourŠJonŠAllen, whoŠreturned with a new album Sweet Defeat in June, will visit Eric’s in Liverpool on Wednesday, October 19.
His debut album Dead Man’s Suit was funded purely from income generated by 20,000 downloads of his song Going Home which featured in a Landrover ad.
The album achieved a succession of highly acclaimed reviews and led to a personal request from Jools Holland to have him appear on Later with Jools after he heard his song In Your Light on the radio, and an impressive six figure publishing deal.
His success has not just been limited to the UK but has spread all over Europe, where he has been on tour constantly since Dead Man’s Suit’s release.
AllenŠsees himself very much as a live performer and has remained true to the philosophy of old fashioned grafting which seems to be paying off as there is rarely a week when he doesn’t get a request to perform.
He has even found himself with the odd celebrity admirer - British actor David Morrissey name checked Dead Man’s Suit as a favourite record in a recent Q interview and James Morrison is also a fan who has been spotted at his shows.
AllenŠhas toured with Damien Rice, KT Tunstall, Mark Knopfler, Emmylou Harris and Jose Gonzalez among others.
“Mark Knopfler has very kindly offered to play guitar on one of my tracks called Sarah,” saysŠAllenŠwho describes his own sound as “soulful, slightly gravelly voice and I’m into roots, blues and folk music”.
“The first music that really captured my imagination was The Beatles. At a friend’s house I found a copy of Sgt Pepper on cassette.
“After I’d stretched that tape playing it constantly I went in search of the rest of The Beatles back catalogue.
“From there my interest spun off on to Led Zeppelin, then on to singer songwriters like Dylan, Neil Young and Tom Waits.
“My parents bought me a four track recorder for my birthday one year and that really turned my interest on to the way that songs and arrangements were constructed, and the way the different instruments interact with each other.
“I started experimenting with recording myself, layering vocal harmonies and generally exploring the multi-track recording process.
“When I finished college I thought it would be a good idea to get out of Devon.
“It had become a claustrophobically sleepy place and I wanted to be somewhere where there were other musicians and some kind of scene.
“I applied for and got a place on a degree course at The Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts.
“During my time there I became a stronger and more focused songwriter.
“In my third year at LIPA one of my demos received a five star review in a magazine called Making Music.
“From that I got some offers of London Management so the decision to move there after graduation seemed natural.”
For ticket details, visit www.ticketweb.co.uk.