The Southern Companion announces new album “1000 Days of Rain” - due out on March 18th 2016 & support slot for Lulu

The Southern Companion 1000 Days of Rain cover
Although The Southern Companion is a new name to most people, the band's collective CV is long and varied. Their sound carries with it the weight of extensive touring and studio experience gained through years as session players for a wide range of artists such as Rumer, Lana Del Ray, James Morrison, Lulu, Pete Townsend (The Who) and Jon Allen.

Having released their debut album “Short Stories and Tall Tales” independently in 2011, the group are excited to bring their new album “1000 Days of Rain” out on March 18th, 2016. A distinctively British take on the Americana/Country genre with echoes of Blues and Rock, “1000 Days of Rain” was produced by multi Grammy nominee Ron Thaler and features guest appearances from industry legend Robbie McIntosh on Dobro and Ben Gunnery on Fiddle.

At the heart of The Southern Companion is singer/songwriter Darren Hodson, who first experienced the spotlight as part of 90s band The Moneymakers. While the band broke up before breaking the big time, the experience left Darren with an initial notion that music may not be the career path for him. While he returned home to Lymington and focused his energies on establishing his own business, the music bug that had hit him at 13 when his Dad bought him his first guitar never waned. After a decade playing in a series of cover bands on the local scene, Darren took the leap to become a full-time, professional musician. Many gigs, bands and miles later he was asked to provide his services to Rumer for her homecoming performance, and soon enough she invited him into her touring band.

Taking to the road around Europe, America and Japan, Darren not only played guitar and sang background vocals for Rumer, he also opened most of the shows and built his confidence and ambitions alongside his fanbase. Having since performed alongside Jess and the Bandits, Darren is thrilled to have been invited to not only play in Lulu's band but perform as the interval 'support act' for the whole of her upcoming UK tour.

With an upcoming performance at Country2Country, which sees Jess and the Bandits' guitarist Louis Riccardi joining The Southern Companion for their set (deputising for Simon Johnson who is unavailable due to session duties for Sir Tom Jones), Darren is excited that the British music scene is finally on the same page that he always been. Having always been a big fan of the transatlantic Americana rock sound, he admits that his 17 year old self was not ready for a career in music, but at 38 he feels that all the ingredients are now firmly in place.

Darren is honest about why it's taken him until well into his 30's to record his "own" material after many years as a sideman/back line member in various different bands. “As a younger man I thought of myself as a guitar player that sings a bit, I loved singing but never had much love for my voice or my writing. The songs I've always gravitated towards sound like they come from a genuine place, from people who have lived a little. It feels odd to say that now, after many years performing everywhere from intimate "house gigs" to 20 strangers, in noisy, packed bars where you have to fight for every pair of ears, to a sold out o2 Arena opening for Bon Jovi, I've got to a place in my life with enough years and experience under my belt where I have an unfamiliar confidence in my songwriting and my ability to deliver the story. I write about real life, I feel like I have something to say that real people will relate to”...

Heading up the release of “1000 Days of Rain” in the single “Crash”, which sees The Southern Companion in storyteller mode. Picking up on a character he created Sleepwalker on his debut album, his character may be afraid of falling in love and allowing himself to be vulnerable due to the way he had been burnt before, but this time around he just can't stop himself from allowing himself to pursue those feelings when he meets someone who stirs them.

UK Tour March 2016:
2nd – Apex, Bury St Edmonds*
3rd – Southend Cliffs Pavilion, Southend-on-Sea*
4th – G Live Guildford, Guildford*
6th – Concorde Club, Eastleigh*
7th – Wycombe Swan Theatre, High Wycombe*
9th – Royal and Derngate, Northampton*
10th – Forum Barrow, Barrow-in-Furness*
11th – Country2Country, o2, London
12th – Meres Leisure Centre, Grantham*
13th – Bradford St Georges Hall, Bradford*
14th – Opera House, Buxton*
15th – Gala Theatre, Durham*
17th – Rothes Halls, Glenrothes*
18th – Eden Court Theatre, Inverness*
21st – His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen*
25th – Watford Colosseum, Watford*
26th – Manchester Academy, Manchester*
28th – Orchard Theatre, Dartford*
29th – Shrewsbury Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury*
30th – The Anvil, Basingstoke*
31st – Queens Theatre. Barnstaple*

*shows with Lulu