Sunrise Over Sea (2003)

Released: 8th March 2004
Recorded: 2003
Length: 71:11
Label: Jarrah Records
Producer: John Butler


1. Treat Yo Mama – 4:47
2. Peaches and Cream – 6:47
3. Company Sin – 4:39
4. What You Want – 5:21
5. Damned to Hell – 1:49
6. Hello – 4:26
7. Bound to Ramble – 6:08
8. Seeing Angels – 6:14
9. There'll Come a Time – 3:36
10. Zebra – 3:57
11. Mist – 2:25
12. Oldman – 5:10
13. Sometimes – 11:05 (Includes :28 of silence)
Later copies included at the end of the CD version:
14. Something's Gotta Give – 10:14 (Includes 7:07 of silence and ambience)

Additional songs featured on the Limited-Edition vinyl release:
1. Losing My Cool - Also featured on the 'Somethings Gotta Give' CD single
2. Something's Gotta Give
3. Across The Universe (Lennon/McCartney) - Also featured on the 'What You Want' CD single
4. Treat Yo Mama (Country Funk Mix) - Also featured on the 'What You Want' CD single


Sunrise Over Sea is the third studio album by Australian band, the John Butler Trio. It was released in March 2004.

In late 2003, John Butler entered Woodstock Studios in Melbourne owned by Joe Camilleri, the leader of Jo Jo Zep and the Black Sorrows. He had a new band consisting of percussionist Nicky Bomba and upright-bass player Shannon Birchall. After recording the album, Bomba returned to his own reggae band and was replaced by drummer/percussionist Michael Barker.

John Butler told the Australian edition of Rolling Stone released in April 2004 that he wanted greater freedom to pursue his vision. "Essentially what I learnt out of this process was, more so than ever, I'm the keeper of the music. I have the intuition and the foresight to pick the right players to my music. I've learned it's not always about having the same players for five, six or 10 years, it’s having the right chemistry for these songs at this time. Some of my favourite Jimi Hendrix music is off-the-cuff stuff with Band of Gypsies."

The title Sunrise Over Sea is taken from the lyrics to the second track, Peaches and Cream. The album debuted at number one in the national album charts in 15 March 2004 and achieved gold record status in its first week of release.

The Zebra EP was released in December 2003 and made the ARIA singles charts in early 2004. The song was voted No. 7 in the Triple J Hottest 100, 2004 and also was the first John Butler Trio single to gain significant airplay on commercial FM radio across Australia, although it was still quite popular on Triple J. John Butler would win an Australasian Performing Rights Association award for Song of the Year in March 2004. The track also appeared on the popular US Crime drama 'Numb3rs' as the opening music (Season 3, Episode 6).

In 2005 John Butler and co-founder Danielle Caruana (his wife) inaugurated the JB Seed grant program. "The Seed aims to help Australian artists from any background, creating art and music across any genre, to establish themselves as self-sustained, professional artists." Caruana also plays independent music, she plays under the name Mama Kin.

Following the Boxing Day Tsunami, the John Butler Trio appeared at the Wave Aid fundraising concert in Sydney, to raise funds for aid organisations working in disaster affected areas.

The John Butler Trio played at all venues for the Big Day Out music festival, starting in Auckland, New Zealand on 19 January 2007, and finishing in Perth Western Australia on 4 February.

All the songs on the album were written, arranged and produced by John Butler, except for "What You Want" where the string section was arranged by Shannon Birchall and John Butler and was scored and conducted by Shannon Birchall.


John Butler - vocals, guitars; banjo (tracks 5, 7, 8), lapsteel (track 1), E-Bow (track 9), string arrangements (track 4)
Shannon Birchall - double bass; electric bass (tracks 9, 12), vocals (tracks 7, 13), piano (track 3), strings (track 4), string arrangements (track 4)
Nicky Bomba - drums; vocals (tracks 7, 10, 13), tambourine (tracks 4, 6), shakers (tracks 3, 9), djembe (tracks 1, 11), sticks (track 3), tikky tak electric guitar (track 3)

Additional Musicians

Michael Barker - congas (tracks 1, 3, 10), tambourine (tracks 1, 3), marimba (tracks 8, 9), darumbukka (track 1), marching bass drum (track 7), cymbals (track 7), kooky spoon solo (track 10)
Danielle Carauna - backing vocals (tracks 1, 2, 4, 13)
Michael Carauna - Hammond organ (track 10)
Dave Pensabene - backing vocals (track 10)
Tim Neil - Hammond organ (track 13)