Timothy Wolf + the Howlers are:
Tim Richardson (vocals, choral harmonies, piano, Wurlitzer, electric rhythm guitar)
James Difabrizio (lead electric guitar)
Jesse Richardson (trumpet)
Ayden Thorne (bass and saxophone)
Graham King (drums and percussion)
Piper Bennett-Swinley (vocals)
Jessie Singleton (vocals),
Lawson Kennard (bass guitar)
Barry White (keys)
“Introspective soulful blues with a hint of ‘I’m ready to boogie’” is a perfect way to sum up the sounds of Timothy Wolf and the Howlers. I manage to catch a quick chat with Tim between packing his car and heading to Byron Bay for some gigs.
You have 19k streams on ‘In Your Arms Again’ already!
Yeah, I don’t know how that has happened! I’m still trying to figure out where that has all come from. It’s good, hopefully it is a good stepping stone moving forward.
You said you are heading to Byron. Are you heading back up there to record?
I wish I could get back into that studio but I’ll be saving up for that for some time. We just have a couple of jobs up that way this weekend. I’m hoping for a really restful trip, its felt like a bit of a whiplash and whirlwind to the start of this year.
I can relate to that; everyone is releasing their covid music.
I was so keen to be a part of that live music resurgence.
Let’s talk about ‘In Your Arms Again’.
The song is inspired by the coming and going of seasons I guess and a combination of both my grandparents having 50 year marriages. When I wrote this it was the at the very beginning of my own, so I guess it was born out of that kind of place. I’ve also come from a more tradition place of writing in a folk/acoustic guitar style and so it was the first song I wrote looking to write in this more bluesy style. Trying to take a step in my own song writing.
Well you have done well if that’s the case.
Thank you. We got to record the song up in Byron Bay with Dan Frizza and got to jump into Bernard Fanning and Nick DiDia’s studio which was an absolute pleasure. I think we had six of us leave Melbourne in between lockdowns, we got out 2 days before Melbourne went into its three month one. We felt like Indiana Jones as he is escaping out of a door and he has to go back for his hat!!!! SO we only just made it, it was pretty surreal that as Melbourne went back into that lockdown we were in this studio in Byron recording music.
I saw that growing up you listened to a lot of 50’s soul and blues music. Who do you get your inspiration from?
I’ve done a couple of trips to America now and the first one we got to spend some time going through Nashville and New Orleans. When you are over there it just breathes new life and existence into these genres. Seeing the big brass bands in New Orleans doing their thing out on the street, the street parties. That’s where it all came from, those street parties. The history that is there. I went to the Johnny Cash museum, the venues and studios that he played in. Not only has the balladry and rules for song writing been defined by these guys but these are the places they did it, the rooms where they played it in. That was a bit of a turning point for me between the folk thing and looking towards the more blues/soul/country kind of thing. I still have lots of folk songs that I write, I am a massive Bob Dylan fan so I can’t help but write those types of songs. Those folk melodies. But at the moment I am definitely enjoying this season that is writing for the full band.
I’ve just recently been introduced to Sam Cooke and I am a huge fan of his now.
There are so many hey. Otis Redding, James Brown, there are just so many through there. Even like Louis Armstrong, I love him. The duet album he did with Ella Fitzgerald, that whole album is amazing. Even listening to all those records too, all the analogue gear.
You can really notice a different sound listening to all those old albums. I love that.
My goal with some of these new songs was to take them and explore them in the realms of the new landscape for sound and production that we have going on. We have gear that is incredible, like never seen before. I was trying to utilise that but still write songs that could be timeless, that could have been written in the 1940’s and 1950’s. Maybe they might sound a bit different if they were recorded with the gear from back then but today they can still stand up and hold strong. It’s something that I think about a lot when I am writing songs.
I grew up listening to Jazz, more that modern jazz big band sound like James Last, but I am just starting to dive into that older style of jazz/blues/soul. It is so good to see younger bands bringing that sound and feel back.
If there is one thing that we learn its that trends will keep going in circles.
You have some shows coming up at the Northcote Social Club.
Yes in early May, one show is sold out and the other still has tickets available. We got to play our debut show earlier this year here at The Night Cat, we were super pumped to be able to pack that out. For us it was almost like a full-circle moment, a lot of these songs were written just before covid started but we hadn’t played together in front of people for 12 months and we hadn’t done a headline show. So many people hadn’t seen music in twelve months. It all came together for us in this one night, this sold out show. It was incredible. We ended up taking a video crew along with us and they turned it into the film clip for In Your Arms Again.
What’s next for you? More songs on the horizon?
Yes we do. We made a whole record; it may have been a little ambitious of us!! We are steadily getting the songs ready, get them to a place where we can get them into peoples ears.