It's all about the stories and songs, the words and the songwriting. Born in Wollongong, NSW, singer, guitarist, percussionist and trumpeter, Andy was 10 years old when he first started to play music.
He has been a songwriter and recording musician since 2007. Before that time he was employed by EMI Recording Studios 301 in Sydney working on many Australian and international albums from 1987 until 1998. The band he was in at the time, “Luminous”, released a self titled EP. Andy spent four years regularly touring the east coast of Australia. In 2009 he released his first solo album titled “Life Got in the Way”.
Whilst writing the songs for “The Reverent Jorfy”, his second solo album, October/November 2012, Andy was reading “A Million Wild Acres” by Eric Rolls. In that account of the discovery and settling of the Liverpool Ranges west of Tamworth, NSW, he came upon the story of The Breelong Blacks; Jimmy Governor, his brother Joe and Jacky Underwood and their killing spree around the turn of the last century. (Thomas Keneally wrote “The Chant of Jimmy Blacksmith” about the same story). Rolls' telling of the story seemed more balanced than Andy remembered Keneally’s being. He seemed to find a real understanding of Jimmy’s plight whilst maintaining a balanced view of the horror of his actions and Andy became obsessed with the story. It turned into the song he and Syd wrote: “Breelong Black”
Andy’s third album “The Reverent Jorfy - Live” was a live recording of the tour Syd Green, Tania Bowra and he undertook in support of “The Reverent Jorfy”. The tour took them through NSW, South Australia, Regional Victoria and Melbourne and back to Kangaroo Valley.
Andy was a finalist in 2 categories at the MusicOz awards 2013 and a grand finalist for World/Folk genre.
In November 2013 Syd Green and Andy recorded an EP, “Black Sea” and in March 2014 he then travelled to New York and played four shows there including a show at The American Folk Art Museum with Syd and fellow expat Dominique Fraissard. There is a clip of a song from “Black Sea” titled Amandine which was inspired by a writing trip to Paris in September 2013. The clip features footage of the Folk Art Museum show and their trip down Columbus Avenue to get to the show. Australians loose in New York City.
New Albion is the song cycle devised in response to the first five years of the New South Wales colony. This new album explores the first contact between the Kameygal, Cammeraigal and the Gadigal people and the Europeans of the first fleet. A time of unprecedented hope and goodwill on all sides, a better world before smallpox decimated the Sydney population and before Arthur Phillip's commission was complete and he returned to England. Andy is playing shows based on this new song cycle with the incredibly talented John Kane from Flying Emus.
Andy was a finalist again in 2016 at the MusicOz awards and travelled to Canada for the Folk Music Ontario Conference. He is a member of Folk Alliance International, Folk Music Ontario, the Americana Music Association and the Americana Music Association of Australia. Andy is influenced by the west texan sound of Buddy Miller and the honesty of Mary Gauthier.
Other reviews are available
on the interweb
here is a selection.
“Andy Gordon’s new album, New Albion, benefits in equal measure from his songwriter’s craft as well as (Syd) Green’s ‘MonoNest sound’. Gordon has constructed a series of songs conceptually linked around the early settlement of Sydney – and the interaction with the Indigenous Australians of the region – and Green, through sound-shaping and his usual simpatico meshing with Gordon’s songs, has given them the perfect setting and atmosphere. The result is very real and very beautiful. The songs have a depth brought about by Gordon’s respectful research, they also have a breadth which comes purely from Gordon’s big-hearted song craft”.
John Hardaker, (The Orange Press).
“Operating in the netherworld between ethereal and rootsy country-folk music and the dreamy and hypnotic realm that Neil Young’s Dead Man inhabits, Gordon’s New Albion requires time and attention to discover the subtlety and grace which make up some of the album’s finest qualities”.
Doubtful Sounds, 20 Favourite AUS and NZ Americana Albums (Post To Wire).
“Black Sea feels like friendly company. His moody voice fills space and leaks into the ears of the listener like the sweet words of a trusted friend. One who understands and repeats your words back in his eloquent style. Listeners will hold onto Black Sea once they hear it, wishing that the too short six songs would somehow become twelve. Comforting and stylistically vast, misery will like Black Sea for company and so will several other emotions”.
Sarah Pritchard, (Alternative Media Group).
"...uniformly strong, he may have invented a whole new genre: architectural acoustic"
Jeff Apter, (Sydney Morning Herald).
“...woody, warm performances, a sublime collection of acoustic flavoured songs that all seem wise beyond their years – sympathetically recorded and produced by Syd Green, a producer who always seems to get it so right”.
John Hardaker, (MegaphoneOz).