Bennett, Bowtell & Urquhart – Time For A BBU!
Inspire: Verb; to fill with an animating, quickening, or exalting influence.
Origin 1300-50; Middle English inspiren < Latin inspirare to breathe upon or into. (Dictionary.com)
There are those out there, within the music industry, that although whispered about seldom attract the headlines or accolades from the mainstream and money wielding general populace. Why? Hard to say: but to witness their art and the magical mojo that radiates out of their music will inevitably involve goosebumps and you know to your absolute core that what you are witnessing and feeling is a very rare and beautiful thing.
Anyone lucky enough to attend their Tamworth concert, or this years’ Golden Guitar Awards will attest that when Kevin Bennett, Lyn Bowtell & Felicity Urquhart (along with husband Glen Hannah on guitar) took to a tiny stage in the middle of the enormous TREC and performed the Kasey Chamber’s song ‘I Still Pray’…it was tingle city!
There is a blatantly special quality to the combined sounds of Bennett, Bowtell & Urquhart. Somehow when the planets align and allow these three monsters of inspiration to come together on a stage, clearly annunciating dulcet vocals and harmonies and emanating mutual deep respect and pure love of exquisite music – you know you are in the presence of something sanctioned by the Heavens.
You missed it? Well, you are not utterly out of luck because there is a recorded album.
Simply titled Bennett, Bowtell & Urchardt (BBU – which as Kevin points out is way better than KB, LB & FU) is a collection and collaboration of songs to truly lift the soul. There is a strong spiritual undertow to the project that leaves one feeling recharged and renewed with an almost evangelical hope.
“We feel it ourselves!” Felicity exclaims, “That’s the beauty of this project, as soon as we open our mouths, even down to when we stand on stage together, looking across and seeing those smiley faces, there’s the sisterhood of Lyn and I, and Kev is such a tree – he’s the real deal!” she continues “… feeling such joy and getting lost in it and being able to share that excitement with others – feeling like teenagers again – is truly special.”
Speaking to Lyn about how the project came together: “For me it was a bucket list concept.” she says, “I have been such a fan of KB and Fliss for so many years – and even though we had all worked together on various projects, it was just overcoming the fear of approaching two people I held in such high regard and saying let’s do this. And thankfully after the success of our Country, Heart & Soul concert that we did together in 2015, we all agreed that what we had was pretty outstanding and wanted to keep it alive.”
With the trio being recently announced as headliners for the 2016 Norfolk Island Country Music Festival they all agreed it was time to head into the studio and attempt to capture that zing thing so each carved out time from their busy solo career calendars and set to work in Glen Hannah’s Central Coast studio.
Felicity points out, “We wanted it to be real and authentic to what we produce live.” “And it was so nice to get back to the roots of music!” Lyn adds, “Stripping it right back to strong songs and harmonies, spacious production, until we found that rich, plush and pure sound.”
“It was also a lot of fun” Kevin continues, “for there’s that element of discovering stuff in the studio, working out how and where my voice would combine with the girls, especially with voices as great as Lyn and Fliss’s, was really special and I think that’s the secret to this project…keeping it simple – the hardest thing in the world!”
Each song on the album, be it a tasty cover or an original written by one, two or all three of the trio, has a life and a story of it’s own that connects deeply to each performer. Be it enchanting ‘first nation’ lullaby ‘Inanay’, the healing ‘raise your hands in the air Gospel inspired ‘I Hear Them All’, or the Kieran Kane & Paul O’Hara, classic When We’re Gone Long Gone – sadly sung recently at a friends funeral-one can feel the commitment and conviction to the lyric as they jointly sing.
…continued in Country Update Issue 80