Last year, Walter Trout was struck with a life-threatening liver disease, and as a result lost 100lbs. Marie Trout shares, “For five years, Walter, Provogue Records, and I have worked towards making Walter’s 25th year as a solo artist a special celebratory event. But the festivities will have to wait. Walter is urgently in need of a liver transplant. It has been heart-breaking for me to watch Walter struggle through these past many months, as we tried various treatment options provided by Walter’s doctors and liver specialists. One by one the treatments failed. Yet through it all, Walter’s courage and determination continually amazed me. Even as he has become a shadow of his former self, after losing 100 pounds and much of his strength, he continued touring, writing, playing, singing and recording. Music and playing for people offered Walter what it always has: It is therapy and a life-line for him when the Blues comes callin’. Thus the theme of this album is colored by his confrontation with mortality combined with a deep, all-abiding desire to persevere, and a good dose of typical Walter’esque life-affirming defiance!” Provogue and Mascot Label Group’s Ed van Zijl offers, “When Walter re-joined Provogue in 2008 we talked about a plan leading up to the 25th Anniversary of his career as a solo artist which is this year, 2014. besides a brand new album we also made a book and a documentary. Not only to make people aware of the 25th anniversary, but also to have people realize just how good and how important an artist Walter is for the blues rock genre Worldwide. A phenomenal guitar player and an even greater person. Always speaking from the heart and always in for a good joke. The touring set up for 2014 was fantastic with shows at the prestigious North Sea Jazz Festival and the Carre Theater in Amsterdam amongst many other great ones. Instead of being out there on the road giving his usual all to his many fans night after night, Walter is fighting for his life and there is nothing to celebrate at the moment. This is so very, very sad and we are all praying for Walter to come out on top. The album will be released as planned, and Walter definitely wants this one to be heard. In the meantime our hearts are with Walter and his family.”
Provogue / Mascot Label Group will release Walter Trout’s THE BLUES CAME CALLIN’ on June 10 in North America, as Walter Trout looks back at an almost 50-year commitment to playing and singing the blues. The album was recorded throughout 2013. The songs reflect Walter’s thoughts about mortality and his renewed appreciation for being alive. An EPK can be screened here (with an embedded link provided below): http://youtu.be/btiS6ijncMk
As he became physically weaker, he fought to continue touring, and found that playing for people was powerful medicine. Like the title of the new studio album, the Blues definitely came callin’ for Walter. It kept him fighting, and in the process, it made him more determined than ever. Walter is currently awaiting a liver transplant at UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles. A fund raising initiative began last week to support Walter and his family which can be viewed here:http://www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/walter-trout-needs-a-new-liver-you-can-help-/151911
Trout offers, “To play my music for people has become even more important to me. When I think about looking out into the crowds of people and connecting with everyone on a soul level, and sharing the experience of music with them, this is what keeps me fighting to get back: My family and my music is my lifeline. These days, it means more to me than ever before.”
Recorded throughout 2013, THE BLUES CAME CALLIN’ features twelve new songs, ten of which are originals. One is written by John Mayall for the occasion, and the other is a J.B. Lenoir cover. Trout searches his soul on this album and lays it bare allowing the celebration of his career to be infused with new appreciation for life. The upcoming official biography is co-written with British music journalist, Henry Yates. The manuscript will be released simultaneously with the new album. Titled Rescued From Reality – The Life and Times of Walter Trout, the book features previously untold stories, and is packed with rare photographs from the musician’s personal archive. The book documents an initially blissful childhood, shattered by divorce, abuse, and violence. As the story unfolds, it leads us through Walter’s life of heartache, poverty, living on the street and being “the only white guy” struggling in famous blues bands in LA in the late 1970’s. Walter reflects on his time in the 1980’s when nobody cared to hear the blues, to being “discovered” and having long-time gigs as a hard-playing and hard-drinking and drugging globetrotting sideman with Canned Heat and John Mayall. The book chronicles how Walter eventually became drug-free, broke out on his own and embarked on a solo career in 1989.
Currently in production and scheduled to be shown in the summer, the exclusive documentary features Walter talking in depth about his life and music. Also featured in the documentary are many of the people who influenced Trout personally and professionally.