BEING on the road has become a way of life for blues artist Matt Woosey, who comes to Owaldtwistle Civic Arts Centre next weekend.

“Certainly for the past five or six years it has been pretty much a constant thing,” said Matt, whose distinctive style has seen him championed by the likes of Paul Jones and 6 Music’s Tom Robinson.

“I do seem to be continually playing but it’s something I love,” said Matt.

“I still love playing places I went to when I first started out and I like the smaller venues too as it keeps me grounded and you can connect more with an audience.

“Also I’m starting to break on through to bigger venues, so it might be Oswaldtwistle one night followed by somewhere like Buxton Opera House the night after.”

Matt has recently supported the likes of the Brand New Heavies and his own major UK tour is planned later this year.

He has already toured extensively around the UK, Europe and Africa, often finding a novel way to arrange his touring schedule.

“I do enjoy playing a few house shows to people in their own living rooms,” he said. “If I have a free evening en route to a show I may play to a room full of people. It’s a bit of a pitstop on the way to my next show and a chance to sell a few albums. Sometimes I even stay overnight. I have used a website called couch surfing to arrange somewhere to stay.

“I did that in Africa and it was very useful because when it’s a place you have never been to before it’s good to get local insight of where to go.

“It can be quite surreal playing in someone’s house in front of a handful of people one night and the next being at a festival in front of 6,000 people.

“I also like to try out new material in these intimate surroundings. They are very informal and people will tell you exactly what they think.”

One German magazine recently described Matt as the best British bluesman since Rory Gallagher.

“It was very flattering,” he said, “but I actually disagree with it. I have always just done my own thing and gone my own way and that’s what I’ll continue to do. “ Matt is also quick to avoid being pigeonholed.

“I do have the tag of being an acoustic blues musician,” he said. “Acoustic music is my passion and a lot of what I do is rooted in the blues but I’d prefer it if we could do without labels as it can make people too quick to judge you.

“But these days you have to have some kind of angle for marketing so I guess I’m stuck with that.”

Matt is currently promoting his most recent EP Hook Line and Sinker but is also planning to release a limited edition boxset of his first five albums.

“It’s a way of drawing a line under my early career and moving on,” he said. “I have three or four releases planned this year so people should keep checking my website”

Matt Woosey, Oswaldtwistle Civic Arts Centre, Saturday, March 22. Details from 01254 398319 or