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A musical nomad
Monday, 05.09.2016, 20:20
oh what a night...
Paul Ubana Jones
To end our summer break on an up-beat note, the mop of frizzy grey hair and the grin that goes around the world are back.

In a career spanning over 40 years PUJ has been a regular on our history making boards. And if the beat-up carpet on our stage could talk it’d be ruminating about one of the finest and bluest of the blues guitarists alive. Born to Nigerian parents in London, he got his gifted hands on a guitar real early on, classical training on cello and guitar followed. Then it was on to developing his own personal repertory in the school of hard knocks, the winding endless road. While living for years out of his suitcase, the proficiency of his Fingerspitzentanz on his guitar grew to such levels it earned him comparisons to lofty names like Andres Segovia, Ravi Shankar and Ritchie Havens. Another voice even called PUJ the «Jimi Hendrix of the acoustic guitar». His authoritative handling of the instrument puts him in style on the crossroad of where blues, folk, pop and jazz meet, with Robert Johnson looking on.

A distinctive soulful voice and his unabated enthusiasm are two more pillars of his craft. Plus what the road has taught him, it’s the key to what made him the possessed live performer he is. In fact, on stage with Patti Smith and Bob Dylan one night in Auckland, New Zealand some time back he rocked the house with the most inspired performance of the night. On tour he has dispensed his magic in the company of Taj Mahal, Ben Harper, Crowded House and Norah Jones.

Our musical nomad has put down roots in New Zealand where he now lives with his family. Only to take off now and again to keep on movin’ on in the direction the neck of his guitar points him to go. Letting the end of one line be the beginning of a new one. 

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