Rhodes - photo credit: Steve Holley

An Evening With Rhodes

Last Friday I was amongst a lucky number of fans to get to hang out with one of the UK’s most talented songwriter artists. Rhodes’ new album dropped on March 1st and it was somehow apt that St. David’s Day was the album launch day for an artist named David who some would say has the voice of an Angel.

I’ve followed Rhodes since I first saw him support Nick Mulvey in 2014 and then saw him in his own right as he was one of the stand out performances at Barn on the Farm Festival 2015; a festival loved and renowned as the home and launch pad for some of our finest artists. I’ve seen him many times since then and he has never disappointed. Rhodes is a songwriter who manages to write music that somehow resonates wherever and whoever you are in life, and
then delivers them with a voice capable of evoking tears and goosebumps in equal measure.

Steve Holley, Rhodes, Tiffany Holley

The new album has been my constant musical companion since it came out last Friday and I can’t recommend it highly enough. ‘Un-finished’ is a title inspired when Rhodes visited an art exhibition and saw work that showed not only the finery of its conclusion but the workings beneath, the sketches that became the masterpieces, the very brushstrokes of genius. This inspired him as the raw honesty and emotion of his lyrics are the wonderful sketches and the perfect soaring voice is the gloss of a masterpiece. The life we live is an unfinished journey and I hope the title means that this incredible artist has more to give in the future. One of the tracks, ‘Toothpaste’, includes a line that has become a personal mantra in my own life journey: “I’m scared but I’m not afraid”.

The wonderful evening I was lucky enough to attend was attended by a lucky ten who had answered Rhodes’ message on his Instagram and been randomly selected from the hundreds of responses. The love in the room was palpable. As the artist sang acoustic versions of some of the new songs from his record and told the stories behind them, he beautifully played his guitar, once his father’s, and poured emotion into every word. With the adoring Instagram Live
audience including complements from none other than Jack Savoretti, we were treated to a memory, an experience that I will treasure forever. Rhodes’ music was truly salve for the soul.

Rhodes – photo credit: Steve Holley

One of my takeaways from the evening is that I hope he takes the time to publish the stories behind his songs; how I miss the gatefold LP with all the scope for words and art as well as music.

Perhaps the song that illustrates the journey Rhodes has been on since his first album is included on this release. Back in 2016 I saw Rhodes play a stunning set at Electrowerkz and he sang a song that was untitled at the time and just appeared on the set list as ‘Flying’. Perhaps at the time it was indeed un-finished and maybe unloved by whoever was advising him at the time
but it has remained a favourite of the artist and was loved by the adoring crowd back then.

Rhodes – photo credit: Steve Holley

Pressure makes diamonds and the song appears on the new album as the breathtaking ‘ Be the Bird’, one of the most inspirational songs I’ve heard in a long time and just one of many on an album full of diamonds; to choose a favourite is truly impossible. This is an album that bores into your very being and mines your deepest emotions; please give it a listen and take it to your

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