When compared to his expressive live performance, the Robert Finley Gondola Session felt quiet and confidential. The use of a Gibson Lucille guitar and small amp did up the volume and grittiness of his recording, but he didn’t have the space to let go like he does on stage.
So he adjusted his sound to fit the space.
Changing his sound to fit the space, or to connect with the audience, is nothing new to Finley. He said that before performing he likes to watch other artists perform and “to feel the crowd…to feel the vibes of where they’re at.” That way, when it is time to perform, “it won’t be like you’re talking to strangers.” And even though this session is designed to be viewed by “strangers” (we like to think of you all as friends) across the web, it shows that he strives to give an authentic performance when he plays.
Robert Finley Gondola Session Videos
To get ready for the 2017 Telluride Blues & Brews Festival I made a playlist featuring every artist at the festival. In between discovering new artists and listening to old favourites from Keb Mo, Taj Mahal & Bonnie Rait, I found myself going back to Robert Finley’s debut album Age Don’t Mean A Thing.
I love the album title and its title track. It has a powerful and meaningful message that carries even more weight when coming from a 63 year old. Putting it on the playlist was a no-brainer. I also added “It’s Too Late” to the playlist after being riddled by the chorus and wanting to dig into the song. As fate would have it, these are the 2 songs that Finley played on the gondola.
“Age Don’t Mean A Thing”
“It’s Too Late”
Robert Finley On Billboard.com
Robert Finley has been busy. Along with travelling to Telluride for the 2017 Blues & Brews Fest and touring elsewhere, he released Murder Ballads with his new producer/label owner Dan Auerbach (the Black Keys), and recorded another album, Goin’ Platnum!, with Auerbach as well. Last week they released the first song from the album, “Medicine Woman,” and both the song and video put Finley’s intense vocals front and center. Read more about all of this in the Billboard.com article, and definitely check out this video for “Medicine Woman.”
Preserving the Soul of America’s Music
That is the tagline of the Music Maker Relief Foundation, of which Robert Finley is a member. And with Finley’s powerful and passionate voice and bluesy-soul music, he is doing just that. The foundation aims to promote the music of the southern USA, and to help provide resources for the South’s people to make music. Have a look if you’re into the Blues and other types of music stemming from the southern USA. Maybe start with Alabama Slim, who also performed at the 2017 Telluride Blues & Brews Festival.
Thanks for checking out Robert Finley, and if you enjoyed what you saw and heard then pay his website a visit.