Hi everyone!

Sue is very pleased to be able to offer a bunch of freebies to you all. For the rest of this week only, you can visit Sue’s bandcamp page here and click “free download” to receive your copy of the single Soldier’s Son!

You should also come along to Black Bear Lodge on Saturday night from 7pm to see Sue perform live. Entry is free and Sue will be joined by amazing alt-country rockers Rattlehand – a night not to be missed.

And if that wasn’t enough motivation, Sue will be giving away a copy of her new album Red Roses during her set!

Look forward to seeing you all there 🙂

The lovely people over at TOM Magazine have deemed Red Roses to be their Album of the Week

You can read an amazing review of the album here at TOM Magazine or below. Thanks so much to Hedi Mailer for giving Red Roses four and a half stars!

If you like what you hear, you can see Sue live this weekend at the Black Bear Lodge! Hope to see you there.

 

 

 

 

Red Roses (Sue Ray Music)

With its bright, bold harmonica intro and jaunty melodic quality, the opening track of Brisbane singer/songwriter Ray’s second album, Shake It Off, is in many ways classic Sue Ray: an engaging instrumental composition paired with often deceptively dark lyrics. “There’s a storm in a cup and it’s drinking me up dear,” she sings. “Could you maybe pass the salt? There’s a lemon in my eyes and smoke up in the sky / And I’m having trouble keeping up.”  Back in 2007, I happened upon Ray playing a show at the now defunct Troubadour and was utterly spellbound. She has the sort of rare voice  –  deep, dark, gorgeously emotive, and molasses-rich that stirs something within the listener and never quite lets go. She gets under your skin and stays there. The following year, Ray released her debut album. The appropriately named Best Beware was a wonderful slice of lo-fi alt-country and its follow-up, Red Roses, builds on the immense promise of that record.

These 12 songs are evocative, sometimes quietly playful, often sad, almost always wryly knowing and impressively well crafted. Many deal with heartbreak, loss, longing or love gone awry  –  ‘Love Evermore’, ‘Wish I Was’ and ‘Red Roses’, for example  –  and showcase Ray’s torch singer vocals to perfection. Whether she is inhabiting the persona of a woman scornful and angry at the loss of her husband (‘Soldier’s Son’)  –  on which she lets loose with lines like: “This soldier’s son is gonna need a dad / The war was won but there’s no one in my bed / And the well is nearly empty and the milk is turning sour / Guess I’m all the man this house has now” – or reflecting on the letters she writes a lover in her head (‘Another Letter’)  –  “Wrote you another letter in my head / It’s a shame you’ll never know just what it said”  –  one thing remains impressively consistent: her heart-rending voice and undeniable gifts as a songwriter. If you’re a fan of the likes of Brandi Carlile or Laura Cantrell, give Sue Ray a listen; chances are you’ll emerge from the experience an unequivocal convert to her passionately original brand of alt-country.

(Heidi Maier)

FRIDAY 5th AUGUST

The X-Wray, Freemantle

with The Hope Addicts (Melb)

& Lindsay Phillips (Melb)

SATURDAY 6th AUGUST

Mojo’s Bar, North Freemantle

with The Kill Devil Hills (WA),

The Hope Addicts (Melb)

& Lindsay Phillips (Melb)

SUNDAY 7th AUGUST

The Bird, Freemantle 

with the Hope Addicts (Melb)

& Lindsay Phillips (Melb)

Brisbane’s Sue Ray isn’t really one for labels. Sure, you could call her a ‘singer-songwriter’ or a ‘solo artist’ – but she prefers simply ‘musician’. And when you look at her impressive career to date, you can see why.

There’s been the garage rock bands, the country folk songs, the collaborations – even a stint in a philharmonic choir. And it’s that wide breadth of experience that has been etched all over her new solo record Red Roses.

Confident, considered, warm, spontaneous – this collection of country-tinged songs showcases a songwriter and performer filled with confidence, maturity and a sense of experimentation. Add in Sue Ray’s show stopping voice, a band of exceptional players, and ARIA winning producer Magoo, and you have an album that really feels like the work of someone born to make music.

But then Sue Ray has known nothing else. Growing up in a musical family in Toowoomba – west of Brisbane – she learned from a very early age that music was something to be valued and treasured…that is was more than just wallpaper. So, for the past 15 years she has followed a path that has taken her around the country and the globe.

Moving to Brisbane in 2000, she found herself swept into that city’s music community. With her bands The Fondelles and Sugartown she earned plenty of fans, and soon other artists came calling. To date she has performed on stage and in the studio as a guest with numerous bands and artists including The Gin Club, Darren Hanlon, Baron Field & Shifter. While with her bands – and as a solo artist – she has opened for everyone from Faker, The Apartments, Keith Podger, The Purple Hearts, The Kill Devil Hills, and Halfway to The Wilson Pickers, Busby Marou and Dan Sultan.

Sue Ray sees that connection with any number of artists and genres as key to her growth as a songwriter. It’s about challenging herself to try new things, explore new sounds and mess around with convention. And soon enough it was her talent and dedication as a solo writer and performer that really started to shine through.

As 612ABC Radio’s Mardi Lumsden put it a couple years back: “Sue walked on stage and my jaw hit the ground. Her voice was so strong and confident. Her guitar playing is excellent and her songs heartbreaking. A consummate performer.”

In 2008 Sue Ray released her debut solo offering Best Beware ¬– a mini-album that effectively cemented her spot as one of Brisbane’s most gifted talents. Enjoying strong support at community radio across the country, tracks from the album went on to be nominated for numerous Q Song awards with the song ‘Last Cigarette’ also featured on the 2009 ‘Home’ compilation of Australia’s finest Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists.

Having spent years touring to most of Australia’s major cities – and plenty in between – Sue Ray started looking further a field for inspiration and last year packed her guitar and went to Europe. Chalking up shows across the continent and the UK, the trip became pivotal to writing and producing the new album. Away from the comfort and familiarity of home, Sue Ray found she had time to reflect and get comfortable in her own skin – to deal with fears and insecurities and let herself be a more vulnerable and open through her music. And as the songs began to take shape they had at their core a sense of honesty and depth that she has managed to keep front and centre across the finished album.

Sue Ray returned home earlier this year and brought together a collection of friends and fellow artists to make the new album at Magoo’s country studio Applewood. Drawn to the no-fuss recording approach of artists like The Cowboy Junkies and Neko Case, Sue Ray’s priority in making the album was to capture the performance, not simply piece together the tracks in the studio – an ambition she has more than just realised.

Hardly one to sit still Sue Ray plans on spending the rest of this year hitting the road to tour and promote the independently released album – released July 29th – and finishing the year with a slot at the Dreaming Festival already on the cards. Whichever way she goes, creatively and professionally, you get the sense that Sue Ray has now, perhaps for the first time, truly found her voice.

FRIDAY 1st JULY

The Old Museum

w/ Halfway & Busby Marou

$12 + bf for presales

SATURDAY 2nd JULY

Teneriffe Blues Festival

::PLUS::
Liam Griffin, Rattlehand, Baron Fields, QUT 100 songs project, Ben Osmond, Ben Salter, Texas Tea, His Merry Men, Cheap Fakes, Frankie and the Moon, Ormiston Pipes and Drums, Unlikely Superheros, View From Madeleines Couch, Out of Abingdon, MASKE TRIO and more..

FRIDAY 29th JULY

“RED ROSES” Album Launch

The Visy Theatre : The Powerhouse

w/ Little Company