Four years in the making, The Swamp Stompers' Corey Legge is ready to showcase his debut solo album – ‘Driving Out Of Eden’.
Released earlier this month, Legge’s album is a body of work he says was not suitable for his up-beat blues band. So he decided to go under his own name as a solo artist. “I felt that I needed an outlet to perform [my solo songs] to a live audience,” he says.
Heavily inspired by Celtic folk music and American singer-songwriter James Taylor, ‘Driving Out Of Eden’ focuses on the folk music Corey was exposed to while travelling and playing festivals around Australia with The Swamp Stompers.
“I love the honesty of the music and having a [European] heritage myself, Celtic music resonates with me,” he says.
“I always loved bands like Thin Lizzy – they played a lot of Celtic-inspired rock music in the ‘70s. I love the melodies, they're really catchy, but it can be really haunting music as well, which I think is really cool, especially as a singer and songwriter and being able to put that kind of emotion in your music.”
Also influenced by local artists like Mia Dyson, Corey admires her musicianship and presence on stage. “[Mia] puts a twist on it that really resonates with the crowd. I’ve seen her live before and her musicianship and her character really shines through on stage and that’s something I would like to emulate in my music.”
Filled with great stories and reflection, Legge reflects on his album and the album name, linking it to the great support network in his home town.
“The album is called ‘Driving Out Of Eden’, which is a place very close to Bega where I grew up in New South Wales. [Ed's note: also home to some damn-fine cheese.]
“All my family is still there, and I love going back home and catching up with everyone. I think a lot of my success as a musician has been because of the support of my family and close friends down that way."
With Celtic and folk elements immersed throughout the nine-track album, Corey also explores personal and family-orientated themes.
One of his favourite tracks, ‘Tightening Thread’ tells the story of his fifth great-grandfather. “He was an Irish convict who was sentenced to death, but they sent him to Australia for life imprisonment instead. So ['Tightening Thread'] is basically me telling his life story.”
New Zealand producer Ben Edwards, whose previous studio credits include Julia Jacklin, joined Legge recording 'Driving Out Of Eden', the duo working together at Ben's studio The Sitting Room.
“The reason I [worked] with him is because I loved what he did with Julia Jacklin’s debut album and Marlon Williams albums.”
Set to tour east-coast Australia throughout March, Corey will be performing his solo songs for the first time with a band behind him.
“I’m excited because I actually haven't toured this project with a band before, so I will have them behind me and it will give me a lot of scope to [play with] different genres; it will take a lot of pressure off me, so I can relax and focus more on delivering the stories.”
Corey Legge 2019 Tour DatesSat 2 Mar - Cobargo Folk Festival (NSW)
Fri 8 Mar - Flow Bar (Old Bar, NSW)
Sat 9 Mar - Dusty Attic (Lismore)
Sun 10 Mar - Lefty’s Old Time Music Hall (Brisbane)
Thu 14 Mar - Lazybones Lounge (Sydney)
Fri 15 Mar - Tumut River Brewing Co (Tumut, NSW)
Sat 16 Mar - The Catfish (Melbourne)
Sun 17 Mar - Tumut River Brewing Co. (Tumut, NSW)
Thu 21 Mar - The Stag & Hunter Hotel (Newcastle)
Fri 22 Mar - Ryan’s Hotel (Wollongong)
Sat 23 Mar - Club Sapphire (Merimbula, NSW)