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Initially a fan-club release of previously unreleased studio recordings, Dynablob represents a casual look at a songwriter who made his name with exquisitely produced albums that often overshadowed his natural abilities. John Wesley Harding has been likened to Elvis Costello for sharing certain strong vocal similarities and employing pieces of Costello’s band for his studio debut Here Comes the Groom. But he is still his own man. The acoustic folk of “Phil Ochs, Bob Dylan, Steve Goodman, David Blue and Me” earnestly recounts Harding’s influences in the grand tradition. “The Man With Two Surnames,” “Talkin’ Return of the Great Gangsta Folk Scare Blues” and “The Wrong Goodbye” make a case for Harding as a solo acoustic act. He can hold the stage with his lyrical wit and strong distinct vocal presence. A country version of “The Devil In Me,” a straightforward effort on the crowd favorite “The Person You Are,” and the extended narrative of “The Celestial Shuttle” round off the rough edges.


Born: October 22, 1965 in Hastings, East Sussex, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

John Wesley Harding may take his name from a Bob Dylan album and be a modern-day folksinger, but with the biting, cynical observations in his songs and a sharp sense of humor combined with winning melodies, he shows that his true forefathers are Elvis Costello and Nick Lowe with a hint of Billy Bragg. Far from being a follower or strict revivalist, however, Harding draws on a wide assortment of...
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