Geoff Achison is a musician of remarkable ability who has forged his own career path and won fans all around the world.
Having taught himself to play in the isolation of rural Australia, he has developed a blues/funk style all his own that can be delicate one moment and explosive the next. Unaware of how the sounds he was hearing on his limited record collection were produced, he invented some of his own techniques – without the aid of pedals or gadgets. At times, just watching him wrench sounds from his simple set-up can be a show in itself.
He is a capable vocalist too with a gritty, soulful quality to his voice. Inspired by the great Blues and R&B music of yesteryear, Geoff’s live set features an infectious mix of gutsy original tunes, improvised jams and dynamic new arrangements of blues & soul classics.
Geoff developed a passion for music as a youngster and taught himself to play on a beat up instrument he’d discovered ‘under the stairs’ of the family home.
In his early 20’s he was hired to play lead guitar with Melbourne’s top blues performer ‘Dutch’ Tilders. After several years of relentless touring around Australia, Geoff departed to pursue his own musical ideas and formed the first incarnation of his own band, ‘The Souldiggers’. “The idea was to invent a name that described the music and I greatly admired the blues philosophy – tapping into one’s soul for honesty and truth. That’s what ‘Souldiggers’ is meant to convey.”
Geoff started his worldwide explorations back in 1995 with his first trip to the US.
He represented Melbourne at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis and won the coveted Albert King Award for his guitar skills. He went on to accept an endorsement deal with the Gibson guitar company’s acoustic division. He formed a US Souldiggers band in ’98 and recorded his Gettin’ Evil CD. He returns regularly to America playing clubs & music festivals. Jorma Kaukonen (Jefferson Airplane/Hot Tuna) has invited him each year since 1998 as a guest instructor at his Fur Peace Ranch guitar camp in Ohio. “Geoff is one of the best blues guitarists I know with a completely individual style.” – Jorma Kaukonen
He established a UK following recording a live album with a British version of the band.
The UK Souldiggers have become a favourite on the British Blues circuit since Souldiggin’ In The UK was recorded before an enthusiastic crowd in 2000. Consistently stunning performances by Geoff and the band have brought some glowing reviews, a BBC Radio special and a Blues In Britain magazine cover story.
In early 2007 Geoff accepted an offer to relocate to Atlanta, Georgia, USA.
He spent 2 eventful years living and working in the US performing with local musicians and racking up thousands of miles on the road. Highlights included jamming with the iconic Les Paul in New York City and being invited to join R&B vocalist Delbert McClinton on board his cruise ship.
In May 2009 Geoff released a selection of self-penned compostitions recorded in Atlanta with US touring band and several featured guests. Its title is ‘One Ticket, One Ride’, an apt sentiment for a creative musician with an adventurous spirit.
**Group Of The Year – Chain Blues Awards, Australia 2007 **Number 1 Blues Release, ‘One Ticket, One Ride’ – WNCW North Carolina 2009