Steve Tyson was born into a fertile Brisbane music scene. His earliest bands, Gentle Art and Spike, played in underground blues and r&b clubs whilst he was still at school. His two later projects, Rough Red and twentysevens, have released ten albums over the past two decades, and Steve has been a major contributing songwriter for all of these records. Both bands have toured extensively in Europe, with folk-rockers Rough Red having performed at the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, Skagen Festival in Denmark, Vikedal Roots Music Festival in Norway, Brosella Festival in Belgium, Bardentreffen Festival in Germany, Skuleberget Festival in Sweden, Galway Arts Festival in Ireland, Paide Shanty Festival in Estonia, and Charlety Stadium in France. Steve’s blues/rock band twentysevens was invited to tour the UK in 2006 as support act to legendary British group Status Quo, playing 31 shows in 42 days throughout England, Scotland and Wales, at venues including Wembley Arena. In 2008, the band returned to the UK and Europe to play some club shows, including the legendary Cavern in Liverpool. Individually, Steve played in the Australian touring band for Chuck Berry, and in Gentle Art and Spike as the support act in Australia for Billy Joel, Elton John, Black Sabbath, and Canned Heat.
His critically acclaimed debut solo record TEMPLE DOG, released in 2011 with 4 star reviews in the national music press, was an eclectic mix of contemporary story-based folk songs, with nods to roots and jazz, delivered with innovative musicianship by Steve and a team of fine players. Stories gleaned from Steve’s travels through exotic locations such as India, Russia, Japan and Vietnam were interspersed with tales of post 9-11 trauma, family skeletons, caustic political satire, and matters of the heart.
His second album GREEN SIDE UP, released in August 2014, was recorded predominantly in Steve’s own Studio Rue du Temple in the Byron Bay hinterland, where he now lives. For much of the inspiration for this new record, Steve had to look no further than his family history, with stories of his great-grandmother’s tough life in rural Queensland, his great uncle’s capture and imprisonment during the Great War, and his French ancestors fleeing from religious persecution in the 16th century, intertwined with more stories from the road, love, murder and a healthy dose of black humour. He toured GREEN SIDE UP extensively through Australia, on the back of more 4 star reviews in the national music press.
In late 2017, Steve released his third album WRONG TRAIN, RIGHT STATION. Recorded during 2016 and early 2017 once again at Studio Rue du Temple, Steve this time adopted an entirely DIY approach, and recorded every instrument himself. A review by prominent music journalist Noel Mengel summed up the album this way..."Tyson does darkness very well with regret-tinged songs of missed chances and jealous-rage murder tales, but he balances these with the songs with a twinkle in the eye or tongue in cheek. The tracks on this third solo set reveal a master song craftsman with a nuanced lyrical touch and strong melodies. Nothing is over-polished, but these are songs that are built to last." Once again, reviewers in a host of music publications gave the record glowing endorsements.
He has a touring band, Steve Tyson & The Train Rex, and released a series of singles with the band throughout 2019 and 2020. The new album 'Banjo's Last Ride' was released in November 2021. Yet again, the record has received critical acclaim in the national music press, including this from reviewer Ian Dearden in Trad & Now Magazine..."Another masterpiece from a master songwriter."
What sets ‘Banjo’s Last Ride’ apart from his previous records, is that this set is very much a band album, with Steve bringing the Train Rex into the studio to record the twelve new songs. Bassist John Barr, drummer Andy Kirkcaldie, keys and acoustic guitarist Jodi Murtha, and guitarist Ian 'Sal' Shawsmith make up the band.
Steve also performs solo and in other interesting combinations, plus Rough Red "never says never". Meanwhile, the songwriting process forever rolls on...