Gerry Joe Weise, Australian blues musician, guitarist, singer and songwriter, was born in 1959 and grew up in Sydney. He has been playing guitar since the age of 4 years old, and is a professional musician since 1976. In the beginning as a teenager, he had the guitarist spot in several Sydney bands that opened for AC/DC, Midnight Oil, Angels, Rose Tattoo and Dragon. He later moved to Europe searching for new musical experiences, while living in Germany, Switzerland and France, establishing contacts with touring agents and record companies in Europe and the USA.
Gerry Joe Weise initiated his solo career as leader of his own band in 1991. As a songwriter, he has published over 80 original songs, ranging from blues to rock to jazz. He has released over a dozen albums and singles with the Chicago based record label, Blues Breaking Records. He has toured Australia, the United States, Western and Eastern Europe, Russia, Scandinavia, Hawaii, Tahiti, Fiji, Polynesia, the Azores Isles, and New Zealand. Throughout his many tours, he has played with Buddy Guy, B.B. King, John Lee Hooker, Albert Collins, Eric Clapton, and Noel Redding. While at other various European events, he has opened for Ray Charles, Gary Moore, the Yardbirds, Canned Heat, John McLaughlin, Pat Metheny, Robert Cray, and Jimmie Vaughan. Juma Sultan (ex Jimi Hendrix) has recently been a band member for European and USA Festivals.
A guitar style that is fused with blues rock and jazz. Gerry Joe Weise has performed at numerous blues and jazz festivals. 1992 9th Chicago Blues Festival (European Tour after Chicago) in Saint-Dizier, France, supporting the Chicago Blues Festival Band with the members Jerry McCain, Gary B.B. Coleman, Luther "Houserocker" Johnson, and Kip Anderson. 1992 San Francisco Blues Festival (European Tour after San Francisco) in Reims, France. 1993 12th Musiques de Jazz et d'Ailleurs in Amiens, France, supporting Buddy Guy. 1994 1st Festival Blues Passions in Cognac, France, supporting Otis Grand Big Blues Band. 1996 30th Commemoration of the first Jimi Hendrix Experience Concert, with guest Noel Redding. 1996 14th Cahors Blues Festival, France. 1999 1st Nuit du Blues in Vic-sur-Cere, France, supporting the Acoustic Blues Summit Trio with the members Matt "Guitar" Murphy, Joe Louis Walker and Billy Branch. 1999 7th Jazz and Blues Festival in Leognan, France, supporting Deborah Coleman.
During the later period of his music career, he was often the headliner or co-headliner for numerous festivals. 2008 5th Santa Maria Blues Festival, Azores islands, Portugal. 2009 16th Artfest in Scottsdale, Arizona, United States. 2009 7th Grosses Guitares Festival in Vaugneray, France. 2010 9th Blues en VO Festival in Paris, France, supporting Joe Louis Walker. 2012 4th Gardenstock Art and Music Festival in Dixon, Illinois, United States, a benefit concert for the Sinnissippi Centers. 2012 5th Presqu'ile Blues Festival in Ambialet, France. 2013 10th Hookrock Roots and Blues Festival in Diepenbeek, Belgium. 2013 4th Unhate Festival in Paris, France, with band member Juma Sultan. 2014 6th Gardenstock Art and Music Festival in Dixon, Illinois, United States, with band member Juma Sultan. 2014 13th Blues on Broadbeach Festival on the Gold Coast, Australia. 2017 6th and 2018 7th Mitchell Creek Rock N Blues Festival on the Sunshine Coast, Australia. 2018 52nd Goodna Jacaranda Festival in Brisbane, Australia. 2019 Cooly Rocks On Festival in Coolangatta, Australia.
Discography, Blues Breaking Records:
2019, Axis Volume 3 USA Tour.
2019, Axis Volume 2 Australian Tour.
2019, Axis Volume 1 French Tour.
2018, Live and Lost in the Netherlands.
2017, Laon Blues Festival.
2016, Blues Gone Wild.
2014, Stormy Sydney, 20th Anniversary.
2012, Live And Proud.
2011, Live Blues World Tour.
2009, Blues Down Under.
2005, Sydney Paris Blues.
1999, Bushman Boogie Deluxe.
1998, Bushman Boogie.
1996, A Letter To Jimi.
1994, Live In Paris.
2018, Manic Depression (Jimi Tribe).
2016, Blue Concerto For Orchestra, Slide Guitar and violin.
2011, Blues For Gary Moore.
2010, Gerry Joe's Houserocker.
The last 10 years, 2009 to 2019:
The last ten years have been significant for Gerry Joe Weise. The year 2009 saw his new opus "Blues Down Under", which met with critical success, that led to numerous tours of the USA and Europe.
In 2010 he opened for Robert Cray and Buddy Guy in the USA, and added to the European and USA tours: Hawaii, Polynesia, Fiji, Tahiti, Poland, North Africa and New Zealand. 2011 saw the "Live Blues World Tour" album with live recordings from the previous year's touring of the North and South Pacific, USA, Europe and Africa. Also in that year was released the single "Blues For Gary Moore" which has become Weise's most popular downloaded song.
The year 2012 had again tours of the USA and Europe, while adding to that year's tour list; Russia, Lithuania and Belarus. During the same year, the definitive Gerry Joe Weise live album "Live and Proud", a compilation of his best live tracks appeared, which was well received by the critics.
All of 2013 was devoted entirely to touring Western and Eastern Europe including Russia, Scandinavia, and around the Mediterranean Sea on the islands of Sardinia and Corsica; while preparing for the following year's album release.
That brings us up to 2014, with the release of "Stormy Sydney, 20th Anniversary", celebrating 20 years as a solo recording artist, representing twelve of his finest songs, and Weise's most popular album to date. After the February album launch, he embarked on a tour of Vietnam, Australia including the Broadbeach Blues Festival QLD, on a USA tour culminating at the Gardenstock Festival with band member Juma Sultan (ex Jimi Hendrix, Woodstock 69) in Dixon IL. A stopover in Fiji, over to Europe organized by Sony, then back to Australia again.
The main 2015 festival with Juma Sultan on percussion, was at Sunshine's Ride and Awareness event, Warehouse 66, Kernersville, North Carolina USA.
The album "Blues Gone Wild", was released worldwide in April 2016. 12 songs (including 3 songs in concert), with 28 musicians featuring Juma Sultan on percussion. Recorded in the USA, Australia, France, Switzerland, by Blues Breaking Records USA. The album was voted number 1 Best Australian Blues Rock Album by the Australian Blues Rock Magazine website, both from the Critic's Choice and the Reader's Selection. The 2016 single with Weise's classical music composition "Blue Concerto for Orchestra, Slide Guitar and Violin", where he performs slide guitar, violin and piano, was recorded with the St Peters Orchestra and Choir in Sydney.
In July 2017, the live album titled "Laon Blues Festival" was released, it was recorded in concert at the Maison des Arts et Loisirs, in Laon, France. In September 2017, they were one of the headlining bands along with legendary Chain, at the Mitchell Creek Rock 'n' Blues Festival, in Queensland, Australia.
2018 has been a busy year with the new album "Live and Lost in the Netherlands", and the single EP release "Manic Depression (Jimi Tribe); the latter was mixed and mastered at the celebrated Electric Lady Studios in NYC (of Jimi Hendrix fame). The single and album, have both received popular radio airplay in Australia and abroad. The Gerry Joe Weise Blues Band toured New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, Australian Capital Territory, and South Australia. They played prestigious Australian venues like the National Press Club of Australia in Canberra, and Lizotte's in Newcastle. They were headliners at several festivals in New South Wales and Queensland. In September, Matt Taylor of Chain joined them on stage, for a memorable jam session at the Mitchell Creek Rock 'N' Blues Festival on the Sunshine Coast, QLD, Australia. In December, Gerry Joe embarked on another World Tour with the SONY XMAS TOUR 2018, taking him from Australia, to Spain, France, Germany, Russia, the USA, then back to Australia again.
In 2019 He performed to an enthusiastic crowd at the famous Cooly Rocks On Festival in Coolangatta, Australia. He also released Australia's first triple blues album and as well as 3 seperate discs: Axis Volume 1 French Tour, Axis Volume 2 Australian Tour, Axis Volume 3 USA Tour.
As a teenager, Gerry Joe Weise's first initiation into jazz in Sydney, was when he joined the jazz fusion quintet Corroboree in 1978. Film composer Cezary Skubiszewski played keyboards, and Manfred Mann Chapter Three's Craig Collinge was the drummer. When Weise left Australia to broaden his musical horizons in 1980, he chose Frankfurt for the music scene. In that city and same year, Weise became one of the members of the Jazzkeller's house band. He backed a variety of German jazz musicians and American blues artists, Albert Collins, John Lee Hooker, B.B. King, and Eric Clapton. Weise made the move to Munich in 1982, and joined the German jazz fusion quintet with horn section, Tour de Force. They were known for their compositions with complex time signatures. The quintet played famous venues in Bavaria, such as the Jazzclub Unterfahrt, the Vielharmonie and the Wintergarten. Towards the end of 1984, Weise left Germany to establish himself in France. Primarly for concert performances, these jazz formations had no official album released, although each group had demo recordings for bookings or promotional use. These jazz ensembles were important to a young Weise, honing his musical skills on the guitar, whereby he played for an approximate two year period with each.
The inception of Gerry Joe Weise's solo blues music career began in 1991, which was initiated in Europe, before relocating back to Australia in 1999. In 1992, Weise was invited to perform at the Chicago Blues Festival, that was touring Europe after the Chicago debut. The festival took place at the Palace in Saint-Dizier, France. Weise was supporting the Chicago Blues Festival Band with the members Jerry McCain, Gary B.B. Coleman, Kip Anderson, Luther "Houserocker" Johnson, and T.K. Lively. L'Est Republicain's reporter Ginette Bellac, described the evening as an exceptional musical moment of joy, that was "bewitched by the blues". Bellac proclaimed that Weise as guest act, "gave a great performance" that warmed up the Palace, "thanks to the dynamic well executed songs". The following year, Weise was invited to participate at the 1993 Musiques de Jazz et d'Ailleurs Festival supporting Buddy Guy. They performed on the fourth evening, of the five day festival in Amiens, France.
Soul Bag magazine's Publication Director, Jacques Perin, described Weise as "an excellent guitarist with technical skills, both rapid and precise". Perin reviewed Weise's first official album Live in Paris released in 1994, and specified that Weise is a tried and true, musician and composer. Indicating that the album arrangements are progressive music, expanding the stylistic boundaries associated with the blues. Hence the reason why Weise subtitled the original album release, Cosmic Blues at Le Cadran. Weise recorded the album live in concert, at the Cadran-Omnibus in Colombes, Paris, on 6 May 1994. The same venue where the Jimi Hendrix Experience had performed in 1967, or other notable bands from the 1960s, like The Who.
The Gerry Joe Weise Band won first place as "best band" in 1995, at the Planches Musicales (Battle of the Bands), on National Youth Day in France. Weise used the 6,000 euro Grant for Creation, to fund the 1995 album A Letter to Jimi. A tribute to Jimi Hendrix, with a collection of mainly electric guitar orientated blues rock, that also featured some tracks with acoustic guitars, and a track with didgeridoo. A compilation of six Hendrix compositions, two Hendrix arrangements, and two bonus tracks. Marc Elliot of Guitar Planet Magazine, described the bonus tracks as outstanding. The album title track "A Letter to Jimi", was Weise's own original composition of dreamy soulful blues, dedicated to the memory of James Marshall Hendrix. The other bonus track "The Story of Life", which was the last poem written by Hendrix, had the musical arrangement composed and sung by Weise, and performed on a vintage 1930 National resonator guitar (Triolian model). Elliot had remarked that it was "a harrowing religious text", and added, "much like Jim Morrison's 'An American Prayer', only better." The album reviewed by Kenneth Voss editor-in-chief of Voodoo Child Magazine, directed the reader's attention to how Weise pays complete respect to Hendrix via personal interpretations. Voss evoked the "A Letter To Jimi" song, with overlaying sitar and resonator guitars, as a "country-folk meets psychedelic-Indian influences".
The album A Letter to Jimi, earned Weise an invitation to perform for an hour, at the 1996 30th Commemoration of the first Jimi Hendrix Experience concert. Voodoo Child Magazine reported that Weise's personal interpretations, infused "originality and musicality" into that night's performance. The ceremony took place at the Palais des Congres in Evreux, France, on 15 October. Celebrating the very first Experience concert during the Jimi Hendrix Experience French Tour 1966, at the Cinema Le Novelty in Evreux, 13 October 1966. The special guests for the 30th Commemoration festival, were Noel Redding (performer) and Kathy Etchingham. A memorial plaque was unveiled by the city mayor before the concert.
What could have been Weise's double album, was divided between two productions, with two different record companies. Bushman Boogie was released in 1998, and Bushman Boogie Deluxe in 1999. Both albums are compiled entirely of original material, with all texts and music composed by Weise. Who revisited many of his Australian childhood haunts, via album tracks with Australiana titles. "Broken Hill Blues", "Kiama Beach Jamboree", "Dreamtime Shuffle", "Corroboree", "Boomerang Ocean", "Rainbow Serpent Dreaming", "Katoomba Express", and "Last Train to Adelaide". These Australian place names, along with the aboriginal didgeridoo showcased on several compositions, demonstrates Weise's passion for returning to his roots. Christophe Mourot of Soul Bag magazine described the Bushman Boogie series, as being a fine blend of excellent blues rock guitars, coalesced with Australian traditional instruments. Bluesboarder magazine's Publication Director, Patrick Dallongeville, argued that Weise is among the very few artists to ever intergrate the didgeridoo into the blues genre. Dallongeville adduced two major influences, Jimi Hendrix and Johnny Winter, when relating to the songs that featured Weise's blues rock trio. Elmore James was also cited as another influence, for the slide guitar instrumental "Gerry Joe's Houserocker", which was recorded on a 1964 vintage Danelectro Silvertone guitar (1457 model).
After the success of the albums Bushman Boogie and Bushman Boogie Deluxe, Weise returned to Australia in late 1999, to embark on the Outback Tour of the Northern Territory. Apropos a concert on 29 November 2000 at the Dinah Beach Yacht Club in Darwin, the Top End News designated, "Gerry Joe Weise's down to earth blues with funky rock rhythms, are tinged with local themes from the Outback." The tour continued into 2001, when they reached Dunmarra on the 30th of March, the Northern Territory News announced, "Gerry Joe Weise and his Bushman Boogie are on their Outback Tour. With 46 concert dates, and blues bordering on the crossroads of rock and country". Weise was in pursuit of creating music with indigenous Australians, and chose Darwin as a transient hometown, known for the vibrant indigenous scene. As part of the Government of Australia's incentive program for Aboriginal culture, Weise was sent by the Charles Darwin University to the remote aboriginal communities of Manmoyi and Gunbalanya. During his sojourns in 2000 and 2001, Weise worked with the aboriginal musical group Nabarlek. Aiding in songwriting and music arrangements, for the 2001 album Bininj Manborlh / Blackfella Road (nominated for an ARIA Award for Best World Music Album in 2002). Weise reunited with Nabarlek nine years later, when he played lead guitar for the Nabarlek Band at the Cite de la Musique on 13 February 2010 in Paris, France. Performing at the Terres de Resistance, a four day world music festival, which also featured the Malien Tinariwen and the Navajo Blackfire.
By 2005, Weise already had ten years experience as a solo recording artist with his album release, Sydney Paris Blues. Guitarist Magazine titled the album "Disc of the Month", and claimed Weise was deeply-rooted in Australia's heritage with original acoustic songs of Australiana, like his self-penned "Bushranger Ned Kelly" performed on a 1930 National resophonic guitar, and "Sydney Blues". While Soul Bag magazine underlined Weise's well produced, and "huge electric guitar sound". Noting that there were many passages with "heroic guitar solos", well mastered and executed.
Between 2013 and 2015, Juma Sultan as guest musician, joined the Gerry Joe Weise Band. Sultan had performed with Jimi Hendrix at Woodstock, and played on over a dozen Hendrix posthumous releases, as well as on two Archie Shepp albums. Weise and Sultan conducted new arrangements of Hendrix classics, that were added to the original compositions penned by both artists. Additionally, on the repertoire was Miles Davis' "All Blues". Weise played lead guitar and sang, while Sultan performed on percussion, flute and vocals. Together with their backing band, the ensemble headlined festivals. The Unhate Festival (a.k.a. Belovely Day), at the Petit Bain in Paris, France, on 4 August 2013. The Gardenstock Art and Music Festival, at Distinctive Gardens in Dixon, Illinois, United States, on 16 August 2014. Sunshine's Awareness Ride and Concert, a benefit for the National Organization for Rare Disorders, at the Warehouse Sixty Six in Kernersville, North Carolina, United States, on 29 August 2015.
Two live recordings featuring Juma Sultan on percussion from the 2014 Gardenstock Art and Music Festival, were added to Weise's 2016 studio album Blues Gone Wild. "Aussie Boogie" and "Inside-Looking Out". The Australian Blues Rock Magazine had written about the track "Inside-Looking Out" from the Blues Gone Wild album, "the Eric Burdon song performed by Weise's soulful vocals and exciting adventurous guitar playing, intertwining with Juma Sultan's congas and percussion; they twine the threads of blues for our future!".