We Gotta Move
Renowned for his lyrical old-time blues harmonica playing, Damian Coen has emerged as a roots & blues singer with a story to tell. A devotee of early country blues sounds, Damian became integral to Australia's acoustic blues and roots scene in the mid 1980s, when he founded the now-fabled jug band, The Mudsteppers, with guitarist Damon Davies. After moving to the USA and refining his talents with Delta bluesman, Paul Brasch (Burnside Records), Damian then escaped to a swamp-side retreat south of Sydney. Here, Damian Coen has shaped himself as a highly accomplished songwriter and performer. In recognition of his musical credentials, Damian and his bands have had the privilege of playing support to various international blues legends, such as Charlie Musselwhite, John Hammond, and James Cotton. He has also played at many peak festivals, including Portland's Waterside Blues Festival, and NxNW Festival (Oregon, USA); and Australia's East Coast Blues Festival, National Folk Festival, and Great Southern Blues Festival. In 2004, Damian released his first collection of original songs, Six Lane Highway. The album received critical acclaim and international airplay, and led to various songwriting awards. CD Baby featured Six Lane Highway (March 2004) on it's front page: 'Mixing up dixieland, early jazz, jugband, ragtime, blues, roots and humor, this upbeat, punchy album appeals to the fun-loving country soul in everyone. Best known for his old-time blues harmonica playing, Damian has concocted quite the sassy brew adding the tuba, jug, and washboard to his folky blues get-up, with hints of Tom Waits, Norton Buffalo, John Hammond, Django Reindardt, and Woody Guthrie. A tickling album that can stick it to the blues ache when it needs to.' Over the past few years, Damian has played selected gigs and festivals, primarily along the East Coast of Australia. Most recently, he has pulled together an exciting four-piece band, The Fathers of Necessity. Damian is once-again supported by Damon Davies, who continues to dazzle with his blues-drenched slide guitar and smoky double-bass lines. They are joined by Paul Johnston on acoustic guitar and accordion, and Danny Freeman on drums and percussion. Together, The Fathers of Necessity have captivated audiences with a ride that weaves through the rich byways of roots music while somehow managing to take on board personal and political narratives of the modern day. Damian Coen has now released his much-anticipated second album of all-original songs, entitled We Gotta Move. Recorded with The Fathers of Necessity, the album also features guest appearances by the likes of Don Hopkins (piano), Marcus Holden (strings), and Cazzbo Johns (tuba). The result is a stunning album that finally realizes Damian's powerful song-writing and impressive musical sensibilities. Drifting through swampy blues, hillbilly tunes, sweet ballads, and gospel harmonies, the album showcases Damian's unique knack for marrying blues and roots influences with contemporary story telling.