STEVE POLTZ by Robert Dunstan
Canadian-born singer Steve Poltz (pictured here somewhere on Gouger St with a moustache), co-wrote You Were Meant For Me with Jewel which topped the US charts in 1997 and is currently enjoying what must probably be his tenth visit to Australia.
He comes armed with a new album, Dreamhouse, which was produced by fellow Canadian Joel Plaskett, a prominent figure on that country’s indie scene who has won a swag of Juno awards which are the equivalent to a Grammy.
“Joel is from Halifax, Canada, where I was born so I’d go back and play shows there and got to know him through my friend Mike Campbell [Plaskett’s manager and owner of Halifax’s The Carleton Music Bar & Grill]. So Joel and I hit if off immediately and then he invited me to come by his studio where he records everything on tape. So I went by to check it out and the next thing I knew we were making a record and ended up with Dreamhouse.”
Poltz, who has had his songs featured in such films as Notting Hill and Jack Frost, has been greatly enjoying his tour but regrets that shows in Brisbane had to be cancelled.
“What a drag. Brisbane is a mess. So I won’t get there this time. And there was a whole bunch of people going to come to the shows but nature had to get in the way. But I’ll go to Brisbane when I come back in 2012.”
When Poltz was last here, touring as opening act for Perth’s Bob Evans, he ended up recording some material in Perth with Evan’s drummer, The Sleepy Jackson’s Malcolm Clark, and these will be finished during his current tour.
‘We’re going to be mastering them before we get to Adelaide,” Poltz reveals. “Time got away from us a bit the last time but that time is now. I was just waiting for the right time.”
A Poltz gig in Sydney saw Dog Trumpet’s Reg Mombassa and Pete O’Doherty and The Go-Between’s Amanda Brown and Lindy Morrison along with members of Brisbane’s Dead Letter Chorus, open for the singer.
“That was an amazing show, man,” Poltz enthuses. “All those guys are so good and it was amazing to see Reg and Peter sing together. It’s always special to see brothers sing together. And their in-between song banter was just so funny.”
Poltz has now asked Reg Mombassa, formerly with his brother Pete in Mental As Anything and who now works as a Mambo artist, to do the artwork for the album he’s recorded in Australia.
“Why not?” Poltz ask somewhat rhetorically. “Reg’s a great artist.”
As per usual, Poltz will be recording his Adelaide gig and making it available immediately after the performance on a USB.
“It’ll be on a two-gig flash drive. And it’s on a WAV file so it’ll be really good quality. And people love ’em.
“And isn’t technology nuts? I’m making videos while I’m in Australia and putting them up immediately on Facebook. You couldn’t do that kind of thing 10 years ago.”
Steve Poltz plays Jive on Fri Jan 21.