The Sou’westers are Liam Ryan (The Narcs), Aly Cook and Dean Heatherington (The Coalrangers).
Ryan made his name as a songwriter playing keyboards with gold record and TUI award winners The Narcs with whom he wrote a number of singles which charted in the 1980s: “You Took Me Heart and Soul’, “Diamonds on China” and “Missing In Action”. He has also had success writing singles for other artists including Midge Marsden (“One Wheel In The Sand”). He has since had a long career as a producer with two solo albums and has been a sideman playing alongside international artists such as US guitarist Robben Ford and UK bluesman Long John Baldry. In the early 1990s he worked regularly in Hollywood and was signed to Criterion Publishing who also had in their stable Stewart Copeland (The Police) and Lyle Lovett.
Aly Cook’s critically acclaimed first album “Brand New Day” which was released in May 2011. A previous nominee for APRA New Zealand Country Song of the Year with “I Wonder”
Cook has toured extensively performing in NZ, Australia, UK, France and Norfork Island. Aly was one of 25 finalists nominated for NEXT magazine NZ woman of the year. She is one busy woman. February 2012 she released her second single “Midnight Sun” from the album Brand New Day. The song is enjoying airplay throughout Australia, NZ & UK/Europe and video is on rotate on Sky63 in New Zealand.
Ryan and Cook will be joined by songwriter & multi instrumentalist and CoalRanger Dean Heatherington…..
Dean is a member of South Island band the CoalRangers previous winners of the Tui for New Zealand Country Album of the year. Dean is one of the songwriters with the Coalrangers having also peformed at the 2012 Woollaston Jazz & Blues Festival in Nelson in January. He is a session musician & arranger with some 25 years of experience as a working musician both in NZ and abroad.
Ryan and Cook have been working together off and on for over 20 years making connections when they were both working deep in the Auckland music scene. Both are now resident in Tasman.
The Sou’westers perform songs they have written and of those that inspire them. They are now working on an album for release later in 2012.