The Gloucester Blues Project Biography

The Gloucester Blues Project

Someone once said that the ‘blues ain’t nothing but a good woman gone bad’. It is this ideology of emotive metaphor and self-expression that gave birth to the Gloucester Blues Project in a cramped and dingy band room in mid-2005. Since then, the band has far exceeded their humble expectations as a temporary side project and gone on to achieve worthy recognition and acclaim in and around their home town of Pietermaritzburg, South Africa.

The Gloucester Blues Project encompasses the spirit of the blues genre whilst exploring the expressive musical form and bringing a new focus to the traditional structure of the blues. From renditions of blues standards to more unclassifiable originals, the band’s emotionally charged lyrics and poignant compositions appeal to a wide-ranging audience. They draw influence from the likes of Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Lang, The Derek Trucks Band, and more rock-based outfits like Led Zeppelin and AC/DC.

Experienced musical siblings Andrew and Ian Dickinson, on guitar and drums respectively, form the original core of the dynamic outfit. Hailing from a hard rock background, the brothers inject a velocity to an ostensibly sombre musical genre. This is coupled with the creative songwriting talent of rhythm guitarist and vocalist John Goodall, who contributes an old-style blues flavour that resonates throughout the band’s music. The newest member is bassist Mark McTaggart who became a part of the project in 2009. An experienced Maritzburg musician, Mark’s effortless bass licks and raspy vocals are a wonderful addition to the group.

The Gloucester Blues Project play regularly in KwaZulu-Natal and have enjoyed performing with the likes of Dan Patlansky, Southern Gypsey Queen and Josie Fields. In 2007, 2009 and 2010 they performed at the Splashy Fen Music Festival. The band has also played at the International Blues Festival in Durban (2009 & 2010) and the Royal Show in Pietermaritzburg (2009). They aim to release an official EP in the near future.


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