Ones to Watch in 2011: Thomas Dybdahl
While Dybdahl is a complete original, his work has earned comparisons to music legends including Tim Buckley and Nick Drake. I also hear a little bit of James Blake in his voice, and I don't think that's a bad thing at all. The saddest thing is, this is the first I'm hearing of Thomas Dybdahl! Apparently, he has three platinum-selling albums under his belt back in Norway. He originally launched his latest album, Songs in Europe with a series of concerts and has since grown his international profile significantly, particularly in Holland, France and Belgium. With all of Dybdahl's success abroad, a U.S. launch totally makes sense right now. I think, given the right amount of promotion, Dybdahl could do well here. I could see him opening for any number of folk acts that are big right now (Amos Lee, Ray LaMontagne) and winning crowds over with his brand of sleepy folk-pop.
To help promote the new album, Dybdahl will launch a North American tour this July, starting in New York City and ending in Los Angeles (see TOUR DATES below). Can't wait! Due out later this year, Songs was produced by Grammy winner Larry Klein, who's produced for the likes of Tracy Champan, Shawn Colvin, Melody Gardot, Herbie Hancock, Joni Mitchell, Madeline Peyroux among others. Dybdahl is the first artist signed to Klein's new label, Strange Cargo, a new partnership with Universal Music Group. According to Klein:
"I'm honored to be a part of bringing Thomas' music to the rest of the world.I spy a date in Boston - July 16th. I'd love to see this guy do his thing live. What a voice. Download his single "Ceilia" on iTunes HERE and check out the EPK below, where Dybdahl discusses the album and some of the influences behind it. As a special treat you can also download a bonus track called "Party Like It's 1929" by going HERE. Also worth noting, if you like Dybdahl's voice, you can hear him singing on three tracks from UK pop/soul/electro band, Morcheeba's sixth studio album, 2008's Dive Deep (Echo/Ultra Records).
His work has an intrinsic emotional power, and reflects an attention to subtlety that I rarely hear. I couldn't imagine a more exciting artist to be Strange Cargo's first release, as I'm a passionate evangelist when it comes to what he does."
July 13 - The Mercury Lounge - NY, NY
July 14 - DC9 - Washington, DC
July 15 - World Cafe Live Upstairs - Philadelphia, PA
July 16 - T.T. the Bear's - Cambridge, MA
July 18 - Casa Del Popolo - Montreal, QC
July 19 - The Drake - Toronto, ON
July 20 - Grog Shop - Cleveland, OH
July 21 - Magic Stick - Detroit, MI
July 22 - Schubas Tavern - Chicago, IL
July 23 - 7th Street Entry - Minneapolis, MN
July 26 - The Media Club - Vancouver, BC
July 27 - Chop Suey - Seattle, WA
July 28 - Doug Fir Lounge - Portland, OR
July 29 - Brick & Motar Music Hall - San Francisco, CA
July 30 - The Satellite - Los Angeles, CA