A Scottish guitarist, songwriter and singer blessed with a delicate yet warm and comforting voice, the soulful troubadour Fraser Anderson has released four progressively improving albums that have enjoyed success at BBC radio and seen his sensitive yet sensual voice and guitar playing style compared to the likes of Joni Mitchell, John Martyn and Nick Drake.
A love affair with France saw Fraser relocate his young family to the idyllic yet remote countryside of the Ariège (close to Spain and Andorra) for a full decade from 2004 following a tour to promote and the girl with the strawberry…, his debut release. His second album, Coming Up For Air, was made in Paris in 2007. Bob Harris described it as ‘truly beautiful’ and Fraser subsequently recorded two sessions for his BBC Radio 2 show (he performed an additional live set for the BBC alongside Natalie Merchant as part of Celtic Connections). Harris was also among a number of BBC broadcasters to show their appreciation of 2012’s self-released ‘Little Glass Box’ (reissued by Membran in late 2014). A glorious retro folk-soul exploration, the record boasted a roll call of world class musicians such as double bassist Danny Thompson (John Martyn, Nick Drake), trumpeter Dick Pearce (Ronnie Scott Quintet) and a tour de force Rhodes piano exhibition from Max Middleton (Jeff Beck, John Martyn).
Moving back to the UK in 2014, Fraser based himself in Bristol and conducted a successful crowdfunding campaign for his 2016 album, Under The Cover Of Lightness.
Recorded at Real World Studios, it is a mature, sensitive yet audacious body of work that moves confidently between styles and benefits from gorgeous female harmonies, subtle orchestration and often inventive instrumentation. Beginning with the easy immediacy of the jazz-pop leaning ‘Simple Guidance’, it is followed by the new single ‘Beautiful Eyes’, which boasts a chorus that evokes the mid-90’s output of fellow Bristolians Portishead. Opening out from there, the strings assisted ‘Crying From My Heart’, double bass driven groove of ‘Feel’ and the closing pairing of plaintive ballad ‘Five Days’ and piano led ‘Rising Sons’ are among many highlights.
Fraser has toured extensively in France, Switzerland and Canada since the release of the album, and part of the new Beautiful Eyes Ontario Skies EP was recorded in that Canadian province. The EP leads with the album version of ‘Beautiful Eyes’ and includes three further treatments of the song, plus an acoustic rendition of ‘Crying From My Heart’ and two versions of a new song entitled ‘What Kind Of Man’.
‘What Kind Of Man’ acoustic in Ottawa:
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