Having released a brand new album, Harmony House, Kiwi music legend Dave Dobbyn is undertaking a pop-up tour visiting the provinces and small towns of New Zealand. 

Dobbyn has been a recording artist for more than 30 years, producing hit after timeless hit which have become an intrinsic part of the Kiwi soundscape. His hits include ‘Slice of Heaven’, ‘Be Mine Tonight’, ‘Outlook for Thursday’ and ‘Loyal’. He holds the most Silver Scroll Awards for song writing and was given a lifetime achievement award by the New Zealand recording industry in 2001. 

Queenstown.com had a yarn with Dobbyn about his new album, the pop-up tour and his upcoming gig in lil’ old QT (The Sherwood, 4th May) – where he’ll be accompanied by his talented band.

So, how did the pop-up tour come about?

After the album release, things sort of kicked off on Facebook. Me and the band started playing a few gigs and we decided to keep rolling. But we’re not playing the big places, just small towns around the country; I love playing in the provinces. 

It’s about beating the record in, too. You need to play them in front of an audience for the new songs to stand on their own. They take on a new life and they grow when you play them live in front of an audience.

Are you looking forward to playing in Queenstown? 

Yes! It’ll be my first gig in the South Island on this tour. 

I’ve always loved Queenstown, I’ve played at the opening of the Winter Festival and I’ve even played a gig at the ice rink. I always feel like I’m on holiday in Queenstown, I actually had my honeymoon down there about 33 years ago.

Playing gigs is good there because there’s a mixed audience, there’s a lot of visitors in Queenstown.

What can we expect from your performance? 

Come along and enjoy the evening, you won’t be disappointed! 

I’ll be playing a few songs from my new album, Harmony House, with a few songs you’ll find quite familiar. Hopefully I’ll be creating new hits as well as playing the old ones. 

The band’s really cooking; we’ve got two guitars, bass, drums. We’re on fire so far, it’s been a really good tour. 

Jesse Sheehan will be doing his own set too, he’s a great guy, a great guitarist and a great 

singer. I think BBC2 just picked him up. He’s very talented. Afterwards, I’ll stay around… the CD and vinyl will be for sale (I’m saving the record stores the hassle.) I love meeting people, so I always stay back to talk… though I’ll know it’s time to go home when people start asking for body parts to be signed.

Tell us a bit more about your new album

It was released in March, and then the vinyl version was released for International Record Store Day (16th April). I’ve not pressed a record for about 30 years, 1985, I think, was the last time I released vinyl. I went to London to watch the master being cut – if the master’s good, the rest of the press will be. I bought myself a new turn table when I got back!

The album is named after a second hand store that was at the top of Queen Street, Auckland. I always loved the name and wanted to use it for an album. 

The album is in two parts, the first half is rock/pop and the second half is moodier. It is family centred, celebratory with some of the usual suspects - love songs, that sort of thing. I’m always working on new songs, so the process of making an album is about putting them into groups, putting the songs with others that work well together. 

The production team were fantastic, they’re really clever and that lets me focus on the music. I would love to create another album with this team!

Catch the legendary Dave Dobbyn at The Sherwood this Wednesday, 4th May at 8pm.