Artistic licence

Tom Wilson expresses himself through multiple styles

Tom Wilson

Tom Wilson

Tom Wilson has no shortage of avenues to express himself.

The former frontman for Junkhouse currently has three music projects on the go – Lee Harvey Osmond, Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, as well as his solo work – acting roles in film and television and he just opened an art show of his paintings in New York City.

Despite all these mediums, which pull his time in different directions, he always comes back to his first love.

“The desire to play music is No. 1 for me,” Wilson said. “That’s what I bring to my audience.”

He performs a solo show at the Diners Rendezvous Wednesday (July 27). The ‘solo’ moniker is a bit misleading as he pulls songs from his multiple bands.

“You are going to hear some Blackie and the Rodeo Kings,” Wilson said.

Not only that, but many of his songs are collaborations, written with other musicians and singers. Currently on top of the Americana charts is the Blackie and the Rodeo Kings song, as well as a Lucinda Williams song which Wilson helped pen.

Americana is also known as roots rock or alternative country.

“I just play whatever I like,” Wilson said.

He’s been playing music for most of his life, recording his first album with the band The Florida Razors. A few years later, he was part of a new band – Junkhouse – and watching songs like Outta My Head and Shine climbing the Canadian rock charts.

After that ended, Wilson teamed up with Colin Linden and Stephen Fearing to form Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, simultaneously working with members of Cowboy Junkies and Skydiggers on the band Lee Harvey Osmond.

Wilson has almost as many albums in the works as he has art projects but he is more interested in playing music for people than recording in a studio. It’s the immediate reaction that he gets from an audience that is so satisfying, he said.

“My interest is in communicating with people,” Wilson said.

The 60-seat venue at the Rendezvous will be a switch from the massive festival audiences he played recently with Blackie and the Rodeo Kings. Wilson says the biggest difference is how he communicates.

“In a crowd of 50,000 you talk a lot slower, that’s for sure,” he said. “You’re kind of a circus performer-slash-travelling salesman when you’re on tour.”

Show begins at 8 p.m. with doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets $22/advance; $26/door. Please call 250-740-1133.

For more information, please visit www.tomwilson.net.

arts@nanaimobulletin.com