SongVault Artist Profile
Andrew Paul Woodworth
California, United States
I’m just trying to turn the bad into the good...
John Paul Jones called him the best lyricist he had ever worked with. At the L.A. Music Awards 2004 he was chosen “Male Vocalist of the Year”, and his music has been utilised for the Roswell-Show, by ESPN, the biggest sports broadcaster worldwide, and by the makers of the cult series Buffy, the Vampire Slayer. And yet, the biggest breakthrough in the life of Andrew Paul Woodworth came with the Beastie Boys’ smash party hit You Got To Fight For Your Right (To Party). His goosepimple-raising acoustic version left mouths gawping in amazement _ audiences as well as insider circles in the music biz _ and, in the end, turned out to be the kick that sent him starting off on a solo career as songwriter. The solo debut by Andrew Paul Woodworth is now ready for release: “Eddy Ate Dynamite”.
Solidly anchored in the L.A. scene, Woodworth founded the post-Grunge band Elephant Ride in the ’90s. Their first album was produced by John Paul Jones, the legendary bass player from LedZep, at his own request. Though the feedback was decidedly positive, the album didn’t fulfil Sony’s commercial expectations. The result: no second album with a major label. In addition, internal problems within the band led to a split-up. In 2002, Woodworth brought the band Virgil to life, equally clearly Rock-oriented, and certainly an above-average Indie success: Movie theatres across the US presented Virgil in their audio programmes and screened the videos on Top 50 markets. The band played at SXSW, and at the LA Music Awards 2005 the Virgil album “My Paradise” received the award for the “Independent Rock Album of the Year”.
Nearly simultaneously, Andrew began recording his first songs of his own together with producer Christian James-Hand. While working, it was more of a mood that led to the creation of Fight For Your Right, but the feedback came right away _ for example from the producers of “One Tree Hill”, who immediately featured the track in their TV series.
At this point it became clear to Andrew that he was already in the midst of kicking off a solo career. He began writing songs like a man obsessed. Together with James-Hand he completed the EP I Hate Music, which promptly became a small Indie hit in a very limited edition. The next logical step: a full-scale album.
Produced by Evan Frankfort (The Wallflowers, The Jayhawks, Rancid), Eddy Ate Dynamite displays the diversity Andrew Paul Woodworth has to offer on 12 songs and 3 interludes; not to mention his love of both melody and painstakingly arranged instrumentation. So it’s no surprise that real strings can be heard on the album, two violins and one cello. Besides that, there’s a horn player, a banjo, a harmonica and all kinds of little sound gimmicks that turn the album into an ear-catching trip.
Andrew Paul Woodworth’s voice might perhaps be described as the love child of Michael Jackson, Eddie Vedder and Jeff Buckley: emotional and entranced by melody, but never soft or powerless. Eddy Ate Dynamite reveals Woodworth as a man addicted to harmony through and through. It presents a kaleidoscope of different styles of playing within Pop and Songwriting. From light-on-its-feet and radio-worthy to introverted and melancholy and on to playfully complex harmony lines enhanced by suggestive horn arrangements, Woodworth pulls out all the stops time and again in order to find new approaches for his songs. Remarkably, a certain lightness weaves its way through all the tracks that enables listeners to lean back and enjoy.
One of the key words on this album is change. The change from a Rock musician who had his roots in bands to a Pop-oriented songwriter, but also the transition that occurs in going from one state to another. From problematical to enlightened, from being insecure to being someone with foresight. “I was always an angry young man,” Andrew explains. “I was often furious. I put the blame on others and on myself when anything went wrong. I annoyed friends because I behaved badly until I realised that I was feeling sorry for myself. I asked myself: _Can’t there be a better way to do all this? Can’t it even be possible to make the world a bit better?’ At least you have to try.”