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Rider Essentials: Tom Wolfe from The Wolfe Brothers

by Mallory Arbour
The Wolfe Brothers

Following the success of Anybody Ever, their 14th consecutive number one Australian single, Tasmanian brothers, Nick and Tom aka The Wolfe Brothers recently teamed up with US powerhouse LOCASH on their latest single, Startin’ Something. The track is the third single from The Wolfe Brothers’ forthcoming fifth album Kids On Cassette, due for release on July 30.

Since their second place finish on Australia’s Got Talent in 2012, the band has taken home two CMC Awards, four Golden Guitar Awards, been nominated for two ARIA awards as well as one AIR Award, recorded with Brad Paisley and toured with the likes of Canada’s Gord Bamford, Lee Kernaghan, Caitlyn Shadbolt, Jody Direen and Christie Lamb to name a few. Kids On Cassette is the follow up to their award-winning album Country Heart, which peaked at number 9 on the ARIA charts.

We caught up with bassist Tom Wolfe to find out the things he always takes on the road with him for this week’s Rider Essentials.


1. Fireball whiskey

Not only is it a party starter, it is a great vocal tonic. Seriously. We have been drinking it pre-shows for years. Before every show, we gather in a circle for what we call “the pre-show huddle”. It’s basically a shot each and arms around each other while we we say “heeeyyyyy” … it sounds ridiculous when you write it out but hey, it works. It puts us in a great headspace and gets us warmed up and ready to do what we do. 

2. My trusty Fender Bass

I have had my 5-string Fender Jazz bass for 10 years and it has gone everywhere with me. I literally have taken it around the world seven times. It’s my favourite instrument and a gig doesn’t feel right without it. I walked into a music shop years ago with no intention of buying anything and saw it. I picked it up and played it for two minutes, and knew I had to buy it. It’s been used for recording on each album of ours too.

3. Headphones

We spend a lot and I mean a LOT of time in planes, vans, buses and cars. I love being able to switch off and listen to some tunes or a podcast. I’ve recently been getting into some crime podcasts about the Mafia in New York and I have been listening to a lot of 70s/60s music. I love the sound and the extreme panning that was used in the era. I love it! 

4. The Sopranos DVDs

With lots of time is spent in planes, cars and hotels, you get pretty good at keeping busy! I mean we go on the road for four days and play three shows and it’s 75-90 minutes on stage each night. There’s a fair bit of time to kill! I reckon I’ve watched The Sopranos ten times – the greatest TV show EVER! It’s taken me ten years and a new drummer to FINALLY convince Nick to watch it with us. He is nearly done with Season 2! 

5. Diary

I am one of those old school guys and still have a paper diary. Even though I have an iPhone 12 and could set reminders and have a calendar/dairy in my phone, I don’t use it. I still use a page to page paper diary to write in my interviews times, appointments, meetings, things I have to organise for our farm or the band etc I have to do. I have a to-do list everyday. It keeps me focused and getting things done. I started doing it when I was 16 (when I started my apprenticeship) and I haven’t stopped. I didn’t want to break the focus. I normally look at it every night before I sleep so I know what I have to do the next day … Yeah I’m a bit of a weirdo haha.


Keep up to date with The Wolfe Brothers on their Facebook page here.

For more of our Rider Essentials series, go here.

Image: Supplied

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