The Southern Companion have revealed details of their third album, ‘Shine a Little Light’, which is scheduled to be released on the 25th of January 2019, via their own label, Eleven33 Records. The album became available to pre-order, on the 21st of November 2018. The Southern Companion will support the album release with a UK headline tour during February and March 2019.
The Southern Companion, fronted by singer/song-writer and guitarist Darren Hodson, are made up of some of the UK’s finest session musicians, some of whom first met in the music room at school. The band´s collective CV is long and varied with individual members playing for Tom Jones, Lulu, Rumer, James Morrison, Lana Del Ray, Pete Townsend, Jon Allen, John Isley and Vanessa May amongst others. They have played together for over 20 years in various projects which all finally lead to The Southern Companion and the album ‘1000 Days of Rain’.
Speaking, back in 2017, about the album, Hodson said:”We’re buttoning up the next record as we speak, it’s 95% there and most of the songs are off being mixed at the moment. We will soon be looking for partners to help us get the record out, it’s under the working title “Shine A Little Light” and fingers crossed for an Autumn release. In the way that “1000 Days of Rain” took off where “Short Stories & Tall Tales” finished I think the new record is another progression and another step forward. We can’t wait for people to hear it.”
The country/America band were nominated for four British Country Music Awards (BCMA), in 2017, including UK Album of The Year – for ‘1000 Days of Rain’, UK Song of The Year, UK Video of The Year, and Horizon Act 2016. They were pretty successful, winning two out of the four awards, which included the UK Album of the Year and the Horizon Act 2016 – best newcomer.
“We had a great night, picked up Horizon Act for 2016 and then the one that I secretly really wanted which was UK Album of The Year. It was completely unexpected as we were very much the new boys on the scene and didn’t think anyone knew who we were apart from maybe a couple of people on the BCMA nomination committee. As far as picking up votes was concerned we just thought everyone else would’ve been wondering who the hell are Southern Companion,” says Hodson, speaking about the awards.
The Southern Companion recorded an Under the Apple Tree session for Bob Harris in 2016 and have appeared at C2C: Country to Country and a string of UK festivals. They’ve built a solid following on the Country and Americana circuit. The band has a featured song in the upcoming smash hit movie “Wild Rose” feat. Jessie Buckley and Julie Walters.
Speaking about their sound, Hodson said: “I never thought of myself as Country until people kept telling me I was, the music that I’ve always loved and gravitated towards is often called Americana/Alt Country, but both have a very wide brush that seem to cover an enormously wide range of styles. Personally I think the industry has to put things into a box with a label on as a way of pushing things out to people they think will like it. I’ve always thought that we sound like a big blending up of the all the classic American genres i.e. Country, Blues, Soul mixed with the British Rock influences from my childhood. If that means we are considered Americana then I would take that as a high compliment.”
The Southern Companion Tour Dates 2019:
20/02/2019 – The Thomas Tripp – Christchurch
21/02 – Nell’s Jazz & Blues – London
23/02 – The Ivory – Harrogate
24/02 – Gullivers – Manchester
25/02 – The Maze – Nottingham
27/02 – The Thunderbolt – Bristol
01/03 – Stables 2 – Milton Keynes
02/03 – Jagz – Ascot
03/03 – Kitchen garden Café – Birmingham
04/03 – The Hawth Crawley – Crawley