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Ten years ago in 1998 John Butler was busking on the streets of Fremantle, West Australia. 3500 self funded cassette sales served as the foundation for becoming Australia's most successful independent artist ever.
Fast forward to 2009 and his label Jarrah Records has now been responsible for 800,000 CD sales in Australia.
The John Butler Trio’s current studio album ‘Grand National’ has received international acclaim since its release last year. The Washington Post praises its “sauntering boogies with an affinity for hip-hop beats” and Rolling Stone Magazine said “Melody, Subtlety, Authenticity. Sophistication… Butler at his brand new best, blending his influences into a sound that is all his own…a hip shaking rollicking good-time album, proof that John Butler is ready to take things to that next level…”
‘Better Than’, the first single from the album held the top spot on the USA Triple A radio charts this year. Last year the trio won two ARIA awards for ‘Grand National’; Best Independent Release and Best Blues and Roots Release, and they received top voting of the evening for their performance of ‘Funky Tonight’, with a special guest appearance by Keith Urban.
Butler owns and operates his own record label- Jarrah Records— which has released John Butler Trio’s last three studio albums and two live albums and his first self titled album. 2003’s ‘Sunrise Over Sea’ was the first independently released album to reach number one in Australia, and, like ‘Grand National’, went on to enjoy multi-platinum success. Home to other artists such as The Waifs, Jarrah Records continues to pave the way for independent artists in Australia.
Butler is also receiving recognition for his innovative arts grant fund The JB Seed, which he oversees with his partner Daniella Caruana. Financed by donations from various sources, the JB Seed distributes over $100,000 in grants and funding each year to as many as 30 artists seeking financial assistance to help them realize their artistic aspirations.
Additionally, The JB Seed hosts a management workshop that brings together music industry newcomers and established veterans. Rolling Stone said, “The JB Seed looks to give other people the resources and confidence they need to get out there and do their thing.” For more information, visit www.thejbseed.com
JBT have taken their music to the world and continue to grow in stature and popularity in USA, Europe and Japan. They have become favourites at iconic festivals such as Fuji Rock Festival, Glastonbury, Bonnaroo, Big Day Out, and Coachella where Bruce Fessier of USA Today said "John Butler revealed himself to be arguably the finest guitarist at Coachella Festival".
The John Butler Trio were thrilled to have toured USA with G Love and The Special Sauce last summer and to have played many European festivals and delivered main stage performances at New Orleans Jazz Festival and Lollapalooza .
In April this year John was honoured to be asked to programme and headline the main stage at the annual East Coast Blues Festival, held in Byron Bay. It was a celebratory affair marking their 20th anniversary and Ben Harper was the only other artist to be similarly honoured. The John Butler Trio also played three other Australian festivals and these were significant as the final shows with bass player Shannon Birchall and drummer Michael Barker.
In June John revealed the new line up for the Trio which includes bass player Byron Luiters, who has been a member of Sydney outfit The Ray Man Three and Nicky Bomba on drums and percussion who was the principal drummer on JBT’s 5 x platinum Sunrise Over Sea album.
In July John took to the Northern Hemisphere to perform a series of solo shows including the prestigious Montreal Jazz Festival for the first time along with other great festivals including Rothbury and the Mile High Festival in Denver. He returned to Australia in August to perform at the Cannot Buy My Soul Concert with a long list of talented local musicians taking to the stage to reinterpret the wonderful catalogue of Kev Carmody.
The John Butler Trio is currently in the studio recording the follow up to the highly successful ‘Grand National’ album. Check out the web site for all the news and updates on the making of the new album. Expect to hear the first taste from the new album on airwaves later this year.
The band has won an ARIA award for "Best Independent Release" for Three in 2001 and has been nominated for three others.
John Butler (27th December 1998)
JBT EP (31st July 2000)
Three (18th April 2001)
Living 2001-2002 (10th February 2003)
Zebra EP (1st December 2003)
Sunrise Over Sea (8th March 2004)
What You Want EP (9th August 2004)
Somethings Gotta Give EP (6th December 2004)
Live at St. Gallen (5th December 2005)
Funky Tonight - single (9th December 2006)
Grand National (27th March 2007)
Many tracks can be streamed and downloaded at their website http://www.johnbutlertrio.com/
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