Strum A Note Up In The Wires: Discovering Little John

I love some good folk music. I love the storytelling aspect, albeit it often blue and melancholy. I love the grittiness of the music and the use of some of the simplest instruments to create such powerful and emotionally charged sound.

Laura Marling was the beginning of my true love of indie folk music. Her gig in Melbourne in 2010 was the most amazing music experience. Never before had I been to a gig where the audience is completely dead quiet during a set to soak in the intricate music and powerful lyrics. All you heard was Laura’s quiet but strong voice and the strum of her guitar. If an experience like this doesn’t give you good shivers, not much else will.

Folk music is real and raw and the emotion in it is second to none. And it makes it all the more special when that good folk music and the talent behind it is homegrown.

I can’t believe I hadn’t discovered Indie folk/roots/rock (very hard to put this sound in a box, so let’s not) five piece Little John sooner than just last year. Lead vocalist, guitarist and songwriter John Dickson formed Little John back in 2009 with Brooke Penrose on double bass, piano, keys and banjos, Damo Hooper on electric guitar and keys, Bill Deeble on skins and Greg Field on the mandolin and fiddle.

Their album ‘Put Your Hands On Me’ was recorded locally in Melbourne and is just stunning. The track of the same name is just beautiful.

Watch: Put Your Hands On Me by Little John


When a song gives you goosebumps, you know it’s a winner, and this one when I first heard it on Triple J Unearthed definitely bought out the goosebumpiness for me. As with all their tracks, it has this stunning simplicity to it while being rich with story-telling, emotion and the kind of lyrics that whisk you away into little daydreams. Little John’s music has an old world quality, and John’s raw, melodic and roots-style vocals combine perfectly with their sound.

Keep an eye on Little John’s Facebook page for upcoming gigs. You can purchase ‘Put Your Hands On Me’ on Bandcamp http://littlejohn.bandcamp.com/album/put-your-hands-on-me

Visit Little John at http://putyourhandsonme.com/

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