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t’s Sunday afternoon in 1972. Young Nudie and his 7 siblings are piled into their father’s ’69 Buick Wildcat on the way to their uncle’s country home in Southwestern Ontario. They’ll be riding horses on western saddles, checking out the newest trophies from pistol shooting competitions, and watching “Hee Haw” on one of two colour TVs. But what Nudie is most looking forward to is listening to Uncle Jack play his late 40s script logo Gibson J45 guitar: “Seeing Buck Owens & Don Rich, and hearing my uncle pick and sing is where the seeds of my love of all things heartbreak & twang started.”
It is only fitting that Uncle Jack’s photo should grace the cover of the Nudie & The Turks album, Looking For A Good Time, released in 2008. The record was the result of a band Nudie formed in his latest residence of Charlottetown, PEI, after soaking up musical experiences in Toronto, Montreal, Phoenix, Austin and New York City. Why so much traveling? “That’s what the world’s for” quips Nudie.
The love of singing and playing superseded any desire to chase a recording career, but with the encouragement of a growing fan base that gravitated toward Nudie’s authentic songwriting, he decided to go solo and self-released Remember This in 2014. He promoted the album with a string of high profile shows, including supporting Marty Stuart & His Fabulous Superlatives, and wrapping up 2015 with an official showcase at the Americana Music Festival in Nashville.
Nudie’s latest offering, Everything’s Different In The Night (out April 22, 2016), was recorded in Peterborough, ON with co-producer James McKenty (Blue Rodeo, Cuff The Duke). It’s a collection of songs about relationships, and stories from the road, including “Mr. Why’d You Come To Texas”, a duet with Sylvie Smith (Evening Hymns) about not knowing how to two-step, and “Train You Took My Baby”, inspired by a trip across Canada.
Other musical friends on the album include Ryan Weber (The Weber Brothers) playing mariachi-style trumpet on “I’ve Been Here Before”, and pedal steel player Chris Altmann (Tim Hicks, Michelle McAdorey). “Any friend that I have, I’ve met through music”, says Nudie, “I’ve tried doing other things, unsuccessfully, and it always leads me back to making music. And I’m glad”.
Nudie continues to captivate audiences with his upbeat and charismatic performances, with plans to tour throughout North America in 2016.