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Tom Walker

One of a handful of self-taught singer-songwriters from Scotland that gate-crashed the top of the album charts in 2019 (among them: LEWIS CAPALDI), Knutsford, Cheshire-raised TOM WALKER was the toast of the north. Tom’s parents were originally from Glasgow; thus his part-functioning vernacular brogue out with his soft-shoe-shuffle singing vox. And very much in the shadow of NUTINI, EZRA, HOZIER, ODELL, BAY and “Even After All” singer FINLEY QUAYE, multi-instrumentalist Tom was a touch of class among his soulful, trip-hop peers led by JAMES BLAKE.
Born in Kilsyth (Greater Glasgow) on 17 December 1991, WALKER was to graduate from the privately-financed London College of Creative Media in 2014. Songs such as `Fly Away With Me’ and `Just You And I’ were duly added to the playlist of the BBC, whilst further afield in America, NBC championed tracks from his “Blessings” EP; issued by Relentless Records in summer 2017. A turning point must’ve been his `Heartland’ download; a promo song co-scribed and produced by “Hotel Cabana” breakbeat artist, NAUGHTY BOY. Subsequent support slots to The SCRIPT (at a Connecticut venue), JAKE BUGG, and the aforesaid GEORGE EZRA, consolidated Tom’s position as the most promising act of that year. This accolade was fully substantiated in the autumn when power-ballad `Leave A Light On’ turned up in the Top 10.
Re-vamped and re-released, `Just You And I’, followed in its footsteps; one of several introspective pieces that helped propel the Mike Spencer-produced WHAT A TIME TO BE ALIVE (2019) {*7} to the top spot. It was indeed an injustice, but not a shock, when the album failed to crack the lucrative but stifling US market. Maybe that was yet to come. And with the soaring `Not Giving In’ not yet a Brit hit, only time would tell if the likes of impeccable album tracks, `Now You’re Gone’ (featuring Zara Larsson), `Angels’ and `How Can You Sleep At Night?’ would make the grade on a global scale.
© MC Strong/MCS Jul2019

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