Stew Walker has hit the big five oh, and unlike most of his peers, he’s not one for the shiny red sports car, or the affair with someone half his age, no, he’d rather be reliving what he says he should have been doing in his twenties; playing his songs, on a stage. And from the very beginning his show Live, Love, Laugh is a reflection back through the years, really almost three shows in one, as Stew whimsically reflects on what brought him to where he stands today (the downstairs lounge of the Butterfly Club).
Live opens with a contemplative number on what might have been if life for younger Stew had gone a little differently; apparently he was set to attend an audition that, as fate would have it, lead to the forming of Working Dog. I Could Have Been A Working Dog, then, is exactly what it says on the tin. Love reflects upon the highs and lows of exactly that, and, not to discount the hilarity to follow in Laugh, some of his more serious songs about relationships seemed a lot stronger, and showed a deep level of complexity and sometimes anger behind this very gently, friendly performer (especially Car Accessory). But quickly his light hearted side returns, from the groan inducing-ly funny Dad Jokes to a tribute to bogans that will have you if not laughing out loud, at least smiling broadly.
There was something to his tone and delivery that reminded me of Paul Kelly, although exactly what, I could not say.
Check out Stew’s youtube page for some of his songs.