Performing a legendary genre of music, Drew Gibson is a songwriter with a heart for the simple things – dusty streets, back porch exits, letterboxes, and all things folk and blue. With influences from Robert Johnson, Big Bill Broonzy, Mississippi John Hurt and Greg Brown, spinning stories and tunes is truly this working man’s craft.
In 2008 The Washington Area Music Association nominated Letterbox for Best Debut Album and Drew was nominated for Best New Artist. In addition, Letterbox was recognized by Indie Acoustic in Boulder, Colorado, as one of the best albums of 2007, and the Just Plain Folks International Music Awards, which are held in Nashville, Tennessee, nominated Drew for Best Male Singer/Songwriter in 2009.
Lauded for his guitar finger-picking ability reminiscent of the blues greats Mississippi John Hurt and Gary Davis, as well as his heartfelt lyrical and songwriting style, Gibson definitely turned some heads with his first album. With its roots and acoustic blues sound Letterbox definitely struck the right chord with critics. “An independent release deserving mainstream attention,” writes David Kleiner of Mintor7th.com. “An artist with enormous writing, picking, and vocal chops.” Letterbox also garnered positive reviews from USA Today and the Washington Post.
In December of 2011, Gibson released his follow up to Letterbox. The album, entitled The Southern Draw, was slowly crafted over a period of four years. “I began working on this record right after Letterbox was finished, but with limited funds, music sometimes gets pushed to the back burner.” Produced by longtime friend and musician, Paul Curreri, The Southern Draw, was recorded entirely in Charlottesville, Virginia, mostly in Curreri’s home studio. Drew would travel the two hours from DC as much as he could on weekends and on vacation days from work. “It was difficult to find times to record,” recalls Drew. “Paul has his music career and I could only really come down on weekends. But we got it done. Slowly. But we got it done.”
“It wasn’t just growing up in the eighties, in the same town. It wasn’t just The Thompson Twins or Devo in the background. But our later influences — getting into all the country blues records in our late teens, for instance — all that lined up as well,” says Curreri. “As a producer, it was a blast to be able to turn round, sing a guitar idea, and for Drew to just play it straight away.” The Southern Draw skillfully blends indie sounds of blues, alt-country, and folk. “More guitars, more drums, more vocals, more keyboards. I’m really proud of this new album,” says Gibson. The record features various walls of sound including heavy percussion with a more electric feel than his debut, but still draws from the same songwriter well. “It’s a bit different with the instrumentation. But it’s very much me at the same time,” Gibson adds.
Curreri agrees. “Drew and I grew up together, sat across from each other in art class, watched The Joshua Tree videos at sleepovers when we were twelve,” remembers Curreri. “Somehow, being on Earth for the exact same time mattered. We shared soft spots for certain sonics, a willingness to play in the same studio sandbox. I’ve banged on doors and cookie sheets on a decent handful of albums at this point, but Drew was one of the first who needed no convincing or explanation about why to do it.”[jamiesocial]