Matt Woods is both a native of Iowa, and a longstanding purveyor of its diverse blues scene. As a seasoned performer of many local, regional and national clubs and venues, Matt has developed a distinct style while staying true to his love of traditional American roots music. Woods is well-versed in the many shapes this music can take; from traditional delta, hill country and urban electric blues, to gospel, country and folk music.
Woods has been performing regularly since 2002 and has released 4 albums (two solo albums, and two backed by his unparalleled band, The Thunderbolts). He has also won the Iowa Blues Challenge and gone on the represent the state in the International Blues Challenge an unprecedented 3 times. Matt’s first solo album, “If I Was a Fish”, finished in the top 5 of the International Blues Foundation’s “best self-produced CD” category in 2006. His two subsequent albums, with The Thunderbolts, have also gained national attention. 2007’s, “Be My Friend”, was referred to as “blistering” by Dirty Linen magazine, and Living Blues magazine called 2010’s “Matt Woods and The Thunderbolts”, “a smoking amalgam of Hound Dog Taylor and Freddy King”. Additionally, Blues Revue called the album; raw, hypnotic and “very appealing”. Matt latest album, “Sawdust and Gasoline” was release in 2015. “Sawdust and Gasoline”, which has received extensive airplay in the U.S. and Europe, finished in the Top 5 of the International Blues Foundations “best self-produced CD” category in 2015, and has recently been nominated by Blues Blast Magazine for album of the year in the “Acoustic Blues” category!
Over the course of his career, Matt has also shared the stage with many notable acts, including; Hubert Sumlin, James Cotton, Pinetop Perkins, Louisiana Red, Eddy “The Chief” Clearwater, Willie “Big Eyes” Smith, John Primer, RJ Mischo, Delbert McClinton, The Arc Angels, Dr. John, Kelly Hunt, and Joe Price. Perhaps most notably, in 2010, Matt Woods and The Thunderbolts opened for Pat Benetar and REO Speedwagon at the famed Iowa State Fair Grandstand in front of a crowd of 10,000+!
A consummate live performer, Woods performs original music as well as many rare, once-forgotten covers with passion.