"Canada's greatest guitarist made one acoustic guitar sound like a fully staffed band. Outrageous skill and contagious joy..." - The London Times
Matt Andersen isn’t so much a performer as a force of nature.
The 31-year-old, Canadian blues artist is a mountain of a man with talent to match. Delivering powerful, gale-force concerts of contemporary, blue-colour blues with hues of folk, rock, country and gospel; he will bring Bluesfest to a standstill this Easter.
"Every now and again you hear an artist that just pulls you up short, stops you dead in your tracks...He is the whole package and can play guitar, write relevant songs and present the songs in a way that will just bring you to a standstill and make you listen up." – Folk and Acoustic Music Exchange
“He writes the kind of big-hearted, hurtin’ songs that give you a lump in your throat because of their raw vulnerability... His voice is volcanic – and what he doesn’t do with his voice — he does with virtuosic guitar work, whether finger picking, strumming or slide. He plays every song as it if it were his last.” – The Record.com
After playing the prestigious 2004 East Coast Music Awards, Matt cultivated crowds, appearing with Randy Bachman, Bo Diddley, Little Feat, America, Loverboy, April Wine, and others. He produced a string of exalted albums: 2007’s Second Time Around, 2008’s Something in Between, and 2009’s Piggyback (a duo set with harmonica king Mike Stevens) and Live at the Phoenix Theatre. To add to these achievements Matt has recently been awarded Male Vocalist of the Year the Maple Blues Awards.
After his fourth tour of the UK, The Times called him “Canada’s greatest guitarist.” In 2010 he became the first Canadian to win Memphis’s famed International Blues Challenge, which led to festival dates in France, Italy, and the US, where he toured with Old Crow Medicine Show.
Matt’s newest album, Coal Mining Blues, was produced by Colin Linden (who co-wrote and plays on several tunes) and recorded at Levon Helm Studios in Woodstock, New York. Featuring the Band keyboardist Garth Hudson and Olabelle singer Amy Helm, it’s a rich vein of new songs, many addressing the trying lives of working people: There’s the self-explanatory “Work Hard for the Luxury,” and the moving title track, which rings true in mining communities from Cape Breton to Sheffield and West Virginia. But not all of Coal Mining Blues is about hard work, as rollicking up-tempo cuts like “Lay it on the Line” and “Fired Up” bear out.
Come along to Matt’s Bluesfest performance and see why his imposing voice and slashing slide guitar has made a monolithic impression on audiences around the globe.