I've been playing guitar and blues for about 7 or so years now, both with a band and acoustic. The blues grabbed me right away and just didn't want to let go, so I started out with the more recent players like Clapton, SRV and went way back, tracing it through the early urban electric blues back to the plantations and cotton fields where it was first played.
I started writing my own songs about 3 years ago and am refining my songwriting as well as developing my singing. Some songs are straight out acoustic blues, while the others have a little bit of variation to them.
First public solo appearance was at Songs 2004, an inter-tertiary institute songwriting competition which I won. I've been around with my own band doing Chicago-style blues, as well as jamming and learning from the old hands. Among the more memorable live jams with a band are Ublues Fest 2003 in Singapore, and jamming all over while I was in LA on internship. Favourite one was sitting in with a blues band that was backing Junior Watson. Mindblowing!
The blues scene here in Singapore is pretty small, everyone more or less knows each other. It's been through a series of peaks and lulls and it's never gotten that much publicity, though I do suspect there must be lots of closet blues fanatics. Either that or the blues CDs in music stores are continuously disappearing into a black hole together with the socks that go missing in the dryer.
The old masters like John Lee Hooker, Son House, Muddy Waters, Howling Wolf, Lightning Hopkins, Mississippi Fred McDowell...there are probably more I just don't recall right now. I try to pick a little from each one and create my own sound. Still working hard on it.
As for inspiration, I look to events in my life, around the world, or from friends, stuff which is worth reflecting upon. Sometimes it's serious, other times it's just plain silly.