Bob Harris OBE In Conversation With John Oates
Renowned guitarist, singer, songwriter and record producer, and one half of iconic duo Hall & Oates, John Oates needs no introduction. Fresh off his latest tour, we are delighted to welcome John to AmericanaFestUK, where he will discuss the art of songwriting, life on the road and his phenomenal career in music. Pull up a chair and and let 'Whispering' Bob and John Oates take you on a music journey.
John Oates is one half of the best-selling duo of all time Hall & Oates, as well as an accomplished solo artist. Singing from the time he could talk and playing the guitar since the age of five, John Oates was destined to be a musician. Born in New York City, his family moved to a small town outside of Philadelphia, PA in the early 1950s – a move that would change the course of his life. In April 2017, John released his memoir Change of Seasons co-written with Chris Epting and published by St. Martin’s Press. The acclaimed title was an Amazon best seller and has been received with both outstanding critical and fan reviews. After completing an extensive book promotion tour in the spring of 2017, Oates resumed work on an important music project that represents the next exciting phase in his burgeoning solo roots music career. The project is entitled Arkansas and is set for release in 2018. Originally inspired by the music and legacy of the legendary Mississippi John Hurt, the project grew to encompass other artists and styles that represent the dawn of American popular music. Stylistically diverse and eclectic, the collection features a full band that was put together specially to bring the full range and flavors of classic American musical styles to life. Oates crafted a number of original songs for the Arkansas album; selections actually inspired by the process of digging deep into the sonic soil of authentic roots music. “I really believe this is the most vital and satisfying solo project I’ve ever embarked upon,” Oates says ofArkansas. “Of all the music I have ever made with anyone, for me this album sits right up there.”
Bob Harris OBE
Few people know music better than Bob Harris. His BBC broadcasting career spans almost fifty years - from his early pioneering programmes on Radio 1, through his presentation of the definitive television music show the ‘Old Grey Whistle Test’ in the 1970’s and his award-winning shows on Radio 2 to his place at the forefront of the massive popularity of Country and Americana music in the UK today. Throughout, Bob has been a trusted guide and mentor to millions of people who have music at the centre of their lives. His guiding principle has always been the pursuit of excellence – reflected in the creative curation and construction of his radio programmes, the understated passion of his unique broadcasting style and his tireless support for the artists he believes in. In 2011 he was awarded an OBE for his services to music, the year he also received the prestigious Americana Trailblazer Award in Nashville. He was instrumental in the birth of the AMA-UK and remains a passionate advocate of Americana music on both sides of the Atlantic.