So here I sit in the sunshine, 29 degrees, not a cloud in the sky (well the odd whisp … artistic licence) and Freedom Day has arrived! What a crass handle to put on it. It should perhaps be better labelled ‘Act responsibly and in the interest of all’ Day … probably not snappy enough! I’m intending to tread carefully as we (hopefully) get out of this thing. For the sake of all those in the Performing Arts, be it front of house or in the background & supporting industries I’m hoping others will do so too – peoples health and wealth is the responsibility of us all.
So my new album ‘Birdland Reappraised’ is out there (again thanks to all involved)! It’s available on all major platforms. There’s a link on the ‘buy music’ tab (it also takes you to streaming sites). Thank you if you’ve already purchased or streamed. It’s received some lovely reviews particularly so in FATEA, RnR Magazine and Louder Than War, thank you Philip Thomas, Morgan Hogarth and Craig Chaligne respectively. I’ve posted the reviews on my site.
Following my venture into video during lockdown 2 with ‘Split Note Thelonious’ being the first and with the help of Tim Bond @ Bookmatch Recording Studio I’ve put another couple of videos online for two songs from the album, one for ‘A Promised Land’ and one for ‘No Shim Sham’ (which features the lovely Charlotte Cooney dancing to my song). Plans are underway to do another video soon. Please check them out.
In terms of gigging it’s still early days. I managed to get a band gig in over in Cambridge a few weeks back but unfortunately paid the price by doing my back in! So a few trips to the Chiropractor have followed! I then managed to slice the second finger on left hand (not good for a right-handed guitarist) so playing was a ‘no-no’ for a while – back and finger getting there now. As if that weren’t enough I’ve also been ‘pinged’ and at the time of writing am in isolation having come in contact with someone who has Covid. Thankfully I’ve tested clear, phew!
On a brighter note the other day a surprise dropped through the letterbox, a copy of the debut album of fellow singer songwriter I’Claudia (Storms & Silverlinings). Were it not for Claudia my album would not have been recorded at Bookmatch, so I have her to thank for that. I played some Mandolin and Mandocello on her album and popped a backing vocal on too. Please seek her out she is wonderful as is her debut album.
I’m back into writing mode myself and currently working on songs on subjects as diverse as the year of 1963 in the USA, the artist Toulouse Lautrec, the inventor Lewis Howard Latimer, the love between writer James Joyce & Nora Barnacle, the current situation we find ourselves in (which I’m trying to slim down from the current novel length draft it currently is!) and others. Those who know me know I write in block sessions and not one song at a time – multi tasking I’ll say no more!
Looking forward to playing as a 6 piece band at the Old Riverport Jazz & Blues Festival 16 – 19 Sep in St Ives, Cambs for the first time and seeing some other great acts, especially the amazing ‘Barefoot Doctors’!
Finally I’d like to say a huge thank you for buying, streaming, liking my new album and supporting me. Let’s raise a tentative glass to ‘Act responsibly and in the interest of all’ Day and hope that “the times they are a’changing”. Take care all