Up Close & Unplugged (October 2014) – BLUES MOUNTAIN


A number of well respected muso’s from the Peninsula told me to check out Blues Mountain playing at Davey’s in Frankston a few Sunday’s ago; so that’s exactly what I did, and was delighted to discover a tight 4-piece outfit with an enjoyable rock/soul/blues groove playing covers and cool originals.

Jesse Valach on vocals is ‘da man’.  A likeable, cool dude who’s been writing originals and doing his own stuff for some time now.  He put together Blues Mountain nearly two years ago and the boys have been gigging regularly since.

With a focus on a blues/soul genre, Valach is a switch on muso who is in touch with his music style and knows how to rev the punters and crowd out a dance floor.

Valach has a philosophical view on life and loves what he does.  As a deep thinker, he has spent many hours discussing the meaning of life with friends, and believes there is something ‘out there’ and feels the world won’t end, as there is a bigger power that won’t let it.  “An intelligence, a divine mechanism”, he says positively.

No doubt these inspiring thoughts influence his song writing as well.  In his first album Jesse Valach presents Blues Mountain, there are shades of soulful expression, colour and depth to his songs.

Next year he plans to up the antics by doing a soul and reggae project with a totally different line up and eventually wants to play the Bluesfest at Byron.

Ben Wicks is their experienced bass player and has done all sorts of other stuff too.  He is self-taught and knows when they are all cooking as there is a cool vibe going down as they play. He has been playing for so long now that he can’t actually remember not playing because it’s a huge part of who he is and of his personal identity.

“I’m a big fan of the idea that music is a living thing and we are antennas for, rather than something we create or something we are forced to do, as its just going to happen.  Its being lucky enough to just relax into it and let it speak through you is what I feel its all about.   There is no control over it, you are just part of it.” Says Wicks.

Anthony Murray plays drums and has played in punk bands, disco bars and other bands too.  He gigged with Rob Sawyer for some time.

Rowen Mumford is their keyboard player and grew up in a musical family. Although over the years he has had one or two lessons, Mumford is mainly self-taught.

He is inspired by his music and uses this as an avenue of expression, moving some people to tears at festivals, in a good way, he laughs. He believes in making his own life so therefore creates his own world.

With many venues now knocking on their door, I suggest you go see them as they are worth the watch and great for a dance. Blues Mountain is back at Davies on Sunday 26 October from 3 to 6pm.  Booking phone Valach on 0431 236 412, but in the meantime, check out his website: www.Jessevalach.com.au