Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Tim Robbins and The Rogues - Oran Mor 2nd October 2010

I was looking forward to hearing Mr Robbins live. Just a few months back I'd read Tim's thoughts on Dylan - and that his favourite song of all time was Joni's 'A Case of You.' I thought here's a guy with good taste in music - plus he acted the lead role in one of the best movies ever made.

Tim Robbins and his 6-piece band, the Rogues Gallery, played a highly entertaining set that went down well with a packed Oran Mor. Tim is 6ft 7 ( the tallest to person to receive an Oscar!) and his head practically touches the stage's ceiling - about which he makes a few jokes. He has a relaxed warm air about him for a Hollywood A lister and has a 6-piece top quality band with him - which included a mandolin, clarinet, accordion, double bass, many guitar changes! and drums. The band featured such talents as Roger Eno, David Coulter and Kate St John.

While his voice may not be the strongest and he is not a seasoned performer all his songs tell of an emotional journey and few artists do this well. He sang songs of Americana roots blues from his new album as well as songs by folk legends - Johnny Cash's 'Flosom Prison Blues', Tom Waits 'All The World is Green', and Billie Holliday's 'What A Little Moonlight Can Do' - as well as some more upbeat rocky numbers. He also had the crowd singing along for 'Mary Don't You Weep.' His liberal political views run through his music with songs such as 'Crush On You'; a song about meeting Mandela entitled ' Lighting Calls' and a 'Time To Kill' a song about talking with an Iraq war veteran.

In September at 51 Tim released his first ever album as he felt the time was right to do so, while he has been songwriting and playing guitar all his life. His father played in a folk band called 'The Highwaymen' and the family moved to Greenwich village for a while. Only books and music were in his family home and no tv, and it is clear music has been a life-long passion for Tim from the Americana roots of Guthrie through the folk rock of Dylan, to the rock of the 80s punk bands. Quote - "I’ve always been drawn to singers that allow themselves to feel, that go courageously to deeper emotions.”

Tim Robbins is an American actor, screenwriter, producer, activist and musician. He is known for his roles as Nuke in Bull Durham, Andy Dufresne in The Shawshank Redemption.
When I think of Tim Robbins - I always think of that scene in the 'Shawshank Redemption' movie when Tim's character took over the prison office and played some Chopin music over the loudspeakers - "If you can live through music, art or literature they are avenues of freedom. The music was like a beautiful bird and everyone felt free. " What a cool legend the guy is, I loved his gig Oran mor. It was truly a pleasure sir, and much respect to you.