By Rebecca Belt
IT IS hard to beat the harmonies and depth of songwriting of Bennett, Bowtell & Urquhart as the trio launch their album, Weeds, tonight, September 14, at the Acoustic Picnic in Sydney.
“Recording this album was easier this time because we know our sound and roles now and we all understand the space we have to leave, too,” Felicity Urquhart said.
“Leaving the gaps is just as important as the harmonies and the arrangements are fun to work out, too. This project was always about enjoyment, although we get in there and work hard.”
The super country trio of Kevin Bennett, Lyn Bowtell and Felicity Urquhart has been magic for the ears of audiences of a variety of genres, as their one-off Country Heart and Soul show in Tamworth a few years ago became a full-blown project.
“My wish for the album is that more people get to hear this than where we left of with the debut release because this album really shows where country is today and you can hear all our influences,” Felicity said.
“You can hear my Tamworth sound – we were originally Country Heart and Soul with me being the country, Lyn being the heart and KB being the soul – and all of that comes through in our major influences and you can hear it in what we deliver.
“The track, Fading Out goes back to Linda Ronstadt and Emmy Lou which I grew up on.”
As beautiful as the album, Weeds, is, it is live where the audience fully appreciates the chemistry and talent that these three award-winning artists share.
“We switch our parts around in performances now because we just have fun with it, so no two performances are the same,” Felicity said.
All three have their roles with Felicity taking on a percussion and rhythm role with her guitar as well as banjo, and Lyn is now playing bass, acoustic and ukulele and KB is on guitar and clapsticks.
For those who knew and loved the late singer-songwriter Karl Broadie, the final track, Every Hello, will bring you to tears.
Karl had been showing Kevin how to use the recording program, Garage Band, and had recorded a version of Every Hello, which KB unearthed before the recording and took to Lyn and Felicity.
Producer and guitarist, and Felicity’s husband, Glen Hannah was able to use the track that Karl recorded and add BBU onto it.
“I was listening to it and got to that last track and I’m in the kitchen crying,” Felicity said.
“It’s just magical; I feel like he’s with us and watching over us. Music is supposed to make you feel something, and this one definitely does.”
The song is poignant and is a beautiful moment to have Karl featured following his death from pancreatic cancer.
Each track is a beautiful moment on the album, but there are issues including the treatment of Indigenous Australians in the song, Down The Hall, and the era of Donald Trump in Mountain of Pain, Aboriginal legends in Lonely Wonga, and issues of love in Weeds and the first single, Love of Money.
As Felicity talks about the album and working with two of her dearest friends, you can tell this trio is making music for all the right reasons and that shines in the songs.
“I love it all,” she said.
“I am totally in love with the album and I feel like I can be tooting the horn because it is for my mates. To get to work with them is a joy.”
Feel the joy yourself tonight at the Acoustic Picnic in Sydney at The Music Lounge, followed by shows at Lizotte’s Newcastle on Saturday, September 15, Hardy’s Bay Club on the NSW Central Coast on Friday, September 28 and Saturday, November 17 sees them at The Spotted Mallard, Brunswick, Victoria.
For those coming to the Tamworth Country Music Festival, their Wednesday, January 23 West Tamworth League Club show is now on sale.