Introducing: Otis Gibbs

Otis Gibbs has his talented hands spread wide and can easily be classified as a singer, songwriter, storyteller, painter and photographer. He runs a regular podcast called Thanks for Giving a Damn as well as hosting the widely popular Country Built on Pandora which finds its way to more than two million subscribers across the globe. He has been described in the past as “the best unknown songwriter in music today” but he remains fairly adamant that he is simply a folk singer.

With half a dozen albums to his name to date, Gibbs is certainly a prominent and hard working musician who puts in both the time and the miles as he propels himself from coast to coast across the US. He brings a kind of quiet amalgamation of folk and country to the table that he predominantly supports with an understand finger plucked guitar and a gentle fiddle. This means that the emphasis in his work rests squarely on the tales that he weaves with his lyrics. His stories are passionate, interesting and evocative as well as retaining a softly sardonic sense of humour within them. Lines such as ‘the waitress is hot but the coffee is not’ can’t help but wring a soft chuckle out of you.

This humour when combined with his graceful and charming storytelling and his kindly, gravelled voice makes for an irresistible set of songs that entertain, whilst informing you of the world around you. Gibbs brings lesser known portions of history to life with carefully chosen selection of words and paints vivid pictures both inside and outside of his music. The images that he conjures with his words are rich, colourful and powerful – they etch themselves into your mind as rich and textured pictures that leave you hungry for more.

Gibbs is a natural born storyteller with a wealth of words at his command and the precision knowledge on how to use them. His music is soft and gentle, washing over you like a fine rain. It leaves a personal and deep connection that Gibbs forges with each and every listener. His thoughts, his feelings; his hopes and fears – they are all yours to share and revel in. This is the mark of a truly great storyteller.

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Review by Joe Knipe