of Rev. Robert Mortimer
Robert Bowles Mortimer, Jr., is the trifecta of a Mississippi Delta Blues Artist, a Undertaker, and a Reverend.
From the days of playing greasy local juke joints to playing major festivals, Rob Mortimer remains an unfettered, blissful performer, singing with a gravely Mississippi Delta spirit over the bone-deep grooves of his compositions. His stage presence before an audience is something startling and immediate, at times a funk bounce, or sometimes a Weezerish Otis Redding, and other times a sort of mass-absolution for the mortal weaknesses that make him and his audience human. When you see Rob Mortimer, and his emaculate band (GoodPaper) you will see the man is fearless.
Born and raised in the rich, fertile soil of a Mississippi Delta (in the back of a Hearse/Ambulance combo) in Belzoni, Mississippi, Robert Mortimer bases his songs on personal experiences of heartache, love, loss, local religion & politics, catfish, cotton, stories, fibs, and lies.
Mortimer is also in the family business; a second generation funeral director, embalmer and cemeterian. Growing up in a funeral home has helped Robert Mortimer see the end as a new beginning and enjoy the happier side of bad situations.
With the wit of Tom Waits and the Southern charm of Conway Twitty, his music overflows with dynamic rhythms and pounding bottoms, while his sextronic lyrics are at times both humorous and thought provoking.
Onstage, Mortimer delivers his songs with compassion and a relentless honesty, but perhaps not until "Basketball Cream" (2015) has a studio record captured the fierceness and intimacy that defines a Mortimer live performance.On the new album, GoodPaper of the Reverend Robert Mortimer offer grace and groove in equal measure, with an easygoing quality to the production that makes those beautiful muscular drum-breaks sound as though the band has set up in your living room.
Despite a redoubtable stage presence, Mortimer does get performance anxietyâ€”specifically, when he is in a three-piece and tie directing a graveside service in August and a wet Mississippi Delta 121 degree heat index.
When he isn't touring, Mortimer exerts his prodigious energies in the family business, as President of Mortimer Funeral Home, Inc., that he owns and operates along with his father and younger brother.
Released in 2004, Mortimer's Good Paper album "Peep", was recorded in a old funeral home next to a cemetery in Indianola, Mississippi. Composed of 11 original songs concerning the book of Revelations, Quentin Tarantino, and the hurt inflicted by women, Peep was well received by their extensive fan base.
Released in 2010, Good Paper's sophomore album "Our Stupid Selves" was recorded at Tweed Studios in Oxford, Mississippi; This chapter in Mortimer's life concentrated on Mississippi Delta heritage, local economy, almost love, and the supernatural.
Mortimer's songwriting is influenced by anybody with or without a message," according to Mortimer, naming Muddy Waters, Stevie Wonder, Tony Soprano, George Bush, Ben Harper, JJ Grey, Sly & The Family Stone, John Mayer, John Scofield, past and present girlfriends, Abe Lincoln, Hernando Desoto, animated preacher men, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, and most of all JAMES BROWN as contributing factors to the evolution of the band.
Rob Mortimer's Most Influential Albums:
"Nevermind" - Nirvana
"BloodSugarSexMagic" - Red Hot Chilli Pepers
"Trace" - Son Volt
"Mule Variations" - Tom Waits
"Ain't Life Grand" - Widespread Panic
"Bad" - Michael Jackson
"A Go Go" - John Scofield
"Like Swimming" - Morphine
"Lawn Boy" - Phish
"Give Up But Don't You Give Out" - Primal Scream
"Live at the Apollo" - James Brown
Ben Skelton is a founding member of GoodPaper, and a great drummer and a blessing of chaos on the stage. Ben has relocated to Carrboro, North Carolina and makes the shows as much as possible.
Jeffrey Tonos and David Morgan have been performing together as the Goofy Boots since the late 2004. Both are educated in music performance and both are multi-instrumentalists, Jeffrey plays guitar. David's groove is on bass. They joined up with GoodPaper in March of 2011. Both are great instrumentalist from Greenville, Mississippi. During times when the band is on break GoofyBoots tour the region as well.
Jason Box, of Tupelo, participates on the drums, and has a foundation in the Delta. Box has no genre he cannot play, and brings the drums very hard.
Walter Washington, strait out of the church band, also educated in jazz performance is a drummer that oftens get the call. Walter is very tight, enjoys finesse, as well as the groove.
"I am nothing without them; I depend so much on their talent an friendship."