Belfast singer-songwriter and poet Andy White is an artist for our times. From Religious Persuasion to latest album The Guilty & The Innocent and retrospective 12-CD box set Studio Albums 1986–2016 he has combined poetic lyricism with a pop sensibility, political outspokenness with folk authenticity.
Andy "has guitar, will travel" but in addition to powerful and passionate live performances, there are many more layers to this 21st Century Troubadour, if you go exploring his recorded and published works.
The Guilty & The Innocent is Andy's 13th studio album. With two compilations, a live album recorded for WOMAD/Real World, and the double CD 'album of the book', 21st Century Troubadour, not to mention his work collaborations with Tim Finn and Liam O Maonlai as ALT, and Stephen Fearing as Fearing & White, the real total is around twenty.
Andy's career started with the Stiff Records EP Religious Persuasion. Championed by Janice Long and Whistle Test, Andy was signed to London in the UK and MCA in America, and his debut album Rave On Andy White was released in 1986. Melody Maker review headline was 'Yer Man's Brilliant' - Andy had arrived. Combining an acoustic guitar with an attitude from the Belfast punk scene of the 70s, along with a sharp wit and poetic sensibility, he was quite happy to be the new Bob Dylan, if only to see how far it would take him.
Looked after by Billy Bragg's manager Peter Jenner for much of the time since then, he's toured the world many times over, was one of the first artists on premier UK roots label Cooking Vinyl, and is best known for songs such as James Joyce's Grave, Street Scenes From My Heart, Italian Girls On Mopeds and If You Want It - literate pop songs as close to Lloyd Cole and Mike Scott as Bragg and Dylan. He has co-written with the likes of Peter Gabriel and Neil and Tim Finn, won Ireland's top songwriting awards and been inducted into the Irish Music Hall of Fame.
An invitation to Australia by Tim Finn led to Andy writing 'Coz I'm Free' for the Olympic Games in 2000, signing for Mushroom Music, and eventually moving there a few years later. This hasn't stopped him touring, however, and he's built up a loyal following in the UK, Europe and North America over the last ten years of hemisphere-hopping.
Andy's poetry and lyrics collection The Music Of What Happens was published by Lagan Press in 1999. His first book of prose, 20th Century Troubadour, came out in 2009, followed by second poetry collection Stolen Moments in 2011.
Having looked over the shoulder of some of the world's finest producers, he's engineered and produced his two latest albums at his studio, The Growlery, in the hills outside Melbourne, using a collection of microphones and equipment he gradually built up from a shopping list given to him by old friend and producer, John Leckie.
Playing practically everything on Imaginary Lovers and How Things Are, in this respect they are a return to Andy's very earliest work. Guest musicians on the album are Andy's son, Sebastian, on drums, making his album debut, and one-woman string section Domini Forster on violin.
With the help of his UK record company Floating World, Andy has enjoyed an artistic freedom which has allowed him to concentrate on building up a body of work second to none. Each album has a specific theme, and scanning the track list of How Things Are will let you know this one's subject matter quickly enough.
In October 2016, the 30th anniversary of his debut Rave On, Andy's UK record label Floating World released a 12 CD box set containing all 11 studio albums plus brand new album Imaginary Lovers, which is also available as a single CD.
andy white’s tracks