Saturday 19 September 2020, 16:36 GMT

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Drive Mon 22nd – 26th

Apologies to my three loyal listeners for the lack of Drive updates – expect a splurge from now on – I spoke a few weeks ago to the delightful Sandi Thom and when I figure out how to edit my interview with her, I shall put it up for you. I’ve just mastered pressing down the record button. A few more years and we should be there.
Sandi was a joy to speak to – the good news is her tour and album release are almost here, and we haven’t missed them. Basically, Sandi as you indeed know, basically summed up the whole You Tube, “bung your video on her, hold some on-line concerts in your bedroom, release a song by yourself and go straight to number 1” phenomenon that everyone was doing a few years ago, and that’s what she did. “I wish I was a punk rocker” shot to the top, and was everywhere for a few months, and then Sandi went away for a while. Ah, but now she’s back. Doing what every interviewer hopes their interviewee will do.
Quietly railing against their former record label!
No, I’m kidding. Sandi spoke well of her previous musical experience, despite the new change of direction. She did, though, hint that while she was (obviously) pleased at her overnight success, maybe it all came too quickly and maybe the record company she was signed to wanted more commercial –type stuff, while Sandi wanted a lot more creative input into the record she actually wanted to make.
And now she has - “Merchants and Thieves” is out this May (the 17th) – and it’s a whole new blues direction. To be fair, Sandi said while the good thing you have on doing things more on your own is you can take things at your own pace - there are now mad deadlines restricting creativity - and you can record what you want to record, there were great things the record industry taught her, such as marketing yourself and just how to get exposure and play the game a bit. She said she looks back at her previous success and was very grateful for it – and now is grateful for going in the musical direction she wanted to go in. The songs are all bluesy and Sandi said she wanted to learn how to really go for blues riffs and soak up the culture of it. As she told us “you can make a blues song out of anything – even making soup – der der da-da-dah - got up this morning - der der dad-a-dah – put on some chicken soup”!
The new songs sound great – the new album’s a bit Fleetwood Mac here and a bit 70’s vibe there, and a bit of US metal strings blues all in there, and the new single is out now – on our A list at Phoenix – “This ol’ world”. Sandi recently also stood in for blues legend Joe Bonamassa who features on the new single when he lost his voice at a recent concert – and it doesn’t get better than that.
It’s been described as the biggest musical re-invention you’ll see this year. Catch Sandi Thom at the Borderline in London on May 11th.
Drive is every day on Phoenix FM between 3 and 7.

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