Paul Dempsey enjoys the flexibility of performing solo and fans should expect the unexpected.
In February the singer, who first hit the spotlight with Something For Kate in the 1990s, will be on the road with a short acoustic tour of eastern Australia which stops at Albury’s SS&A Club on Friday, February 2.
“When I perform with the band, or with my solo backing band, it requires a lot of rehearsal but when I’m by myself I don’t have to do that at all,” he tells The Border Mail.
“Because you’re not keeping the band waiting you can just stand there and have a back and forwards with the audience and often that leads to some really funny and interesting places.
“There’s a definite element of almost stand up comedy because you end up sharing jokes with the audience and it often ends up getting ridiculous at times.”
It also means the set list is anything but set.
“I write a set list and then I rarely stick to it … Usually I just know what I’m gonna start with and then it flows. People yell a few out, I throw in a couple of covers as circuit breakers,” he says.
“Everything just depends on the room, when it’s just you and a few hundred people you have to read the room.” He enjoys the stripped back approach because it is not just about the wall of sound but about the performance and the audience.
“Intimate gets used all the time but the fact is you’re alone up there and also you’re not battering the audience with this wall of amplifiers so you can feel the room, feel the energy in the room,” Dempsey says.
“It can get to the point where you can hear a pin drop and when you’ve got a few hundred people who are all in an absolute hushed silence that’s a really special thing, it’s a shared thing. When you can get a whole room of people to that kind of place it’s a really wonderful thing.
“The success or failure of the show really depends on every person in the room."