“I was 10 when my Dad put a guitar on my lap and showed me how to play an E chord. It was obvious he wanted me to find a different hobby to football. I think he got tired of standing in the cold on Sundays, trying to avoid that familiar question, ‘Can you be linesman for this game?’ and plus I was never any good!
“I knew immediately with music, I had a better chance of making something from it and I think my Dad knew this as well. He has been ridiculously supportive, taking me to see some great artists, driving me all over the country for the last six years and I do owe him a great deal, without him I would not be doing what I am today!
“I started by learning to play the electric guitar, I wanted to be a fret wizz and be able to play all the solos but in all honesty, I didn’t want to learn the scales! When I started singing, it seemed natural for me to move to the acoustic guitar and learn how to accompany myself. Fortunately, I did not have a problem with playing the guitar and singing at the same time, so I started by learning covers and pretty soon began writing my own songs.
“There was always music playing in the house, so from very young I was familiar with artists like Richard Thompson and John Hiatt. I loved their songs because of the stories they told and their rich mesmerising melodies, needing nothing more than an acoustic guitar to complement their voices.
“I remember the first film I really loved was O Brother, Where Art Thou because of the songs and performances in the film. I used to walk around the house singing Man Of Constant Sorrow in my best Mississippian accent! Then into my early teens, seeing artists live like Martyn Joseph and Steve Knightley was inspirational.
“For me, there was never really a point in my life that made me want to start writing, I did not have an epiphany or wake up one morning thinking this is what I need to do. I just started writing songs and it has evolved over the past seven years or so into what I do now. Song writing fascinates me and I get such a buzz playing my songs live in front of people that might connect with what I am trying to say.
“When I first came round to writing my own material, with just my voice and an acoustic guitar, I would often end up with that rootsy, folky feel and I have stuck with that because if feels so natural.
“I do listen to so many different types of music and they all rub off a little bit on my writing, and I think this is why it is hard for me to place myself into a particular genre. Steve Knightley calls my music ‘Kent Folk’… I like that.”
Thanks to Luke Jackson for the latest in our series of artist blogs.
Luke’s new album More Than Boys is out now. Catch him live this autumn supporting Martyn Joseph on his 30-date UK tour.