Steve Boyd’s Rum Reverie

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Steve Boyd’s Rum Reverie

Lead singer/guitarist Steve Boyd chats to Forte about the punk, blues and roots music scene, performing with his band Steve Boyd’s Rum Reverie, and memories from the 90s.

Thanks for answering a few questions for us. It’s been a big year with your album drop and many successful gigs, do you have a highlight of the year yet?

Probably our first one at The Rainbow Hotel in Fitzroy. The gig was a real success and basically gave us a sense of validation and confidence that we were on to a winner.

You’re going to be playing in Geelong soon, what are your thoughts the blues/roots music scene here?
We’re really excited about playing in Geelong. We have had a strong affinity with the area and have many musician friends who form part of the rich musical community out that way. It seems there has been a vibrant roots music scene in Geelong for some time now. With folks like Wayne Jury, Kelly Auty, Tim Neal, Sarah Carroll, Chris Wilson, and Felicia Bassgal all part of that creative coastal community, you can’t really go wrong. Obviously The Blues Train has been a huge success for many years due to Hugo T. Armstrong’s vision and commitment. There seems to be a close-knit musical culture of collaboration and support.

It’s interesting you take inspiration from punk and roots; do those two merge naturally for you?

Definitely. I think both musical forms are intrinsically raw and primal at heart. The two genres share an immediacy that is more instinctive than academic. Arguably, they also had an empowering affect on the marginalised. They cross socio economic boundaries and give a voice to the outsider.

We saw that there was free veggie chilli at one of your gigs, were you involved in organising that?

No, the free chilli is made by RRR’s very own Max (son of) Crawdaddy who runs Cherry Blues at The Cherry Bar on Sundays. He makes a mean chilli by the way, my mouth is watering just thinking about it!

What was the performance that made you want to give music a real go?
For me, it was playing a gig with my first garage band at a kind of artsy student cafe. I was a kid and punk poet extraordinaire John Cooper Clarke was in the audience. He came up to the band afterwards and said ‘It was grand lads, well done’ – or something like that. I was beaming!

You were playing festivals in the 90s, any particularly fond memories from that time?
I have many fond memories from music festivals in the nineties and early noughties. Mainly about the fact that we were on the same bill as so many legendary artists. That in itself is always mind-blowing. Playing to large audiences who are there to be taken some where special brings out the best in you though. Also playing on the same stage as Ray Charles and Bob Dylan has to be mentioned – things like that stay with you forever.

If someone wanted to buy you drink after the show, would should they get you?
In an ideal world, a single malt. A pot of beer would do just fine though.

When & Where: Pistol Pete’s Food n’ Blues – September 24