Finally, I sometimes get asked what my songs are about and I almost always fail to explain them properly. So here are some explanations to go with this year's release, along with the instruments I recorded for each song:
(Acoustic guitar, electric bass, piano, drums, tambourine, hammond, vocals)
Back in the summer of 2013 there was a series of Wednesday evenings where a group of friends gathered on a boat and floated around on the Thames near home. Everyone was going through something and the river was a tonic that soothed. That point in the evening where the sun was nearly down and the water was like a sheet of glass remains one of my favourite things. Add the fact that it was still warm and Pink Floyd was playing on the boat stereo, well, you get the idea.
Learn To Fly
(Guitar thump, hand claps, acoustic guitar, electric bass, 'cello, piano, vocals)
In 2011 I made the enormous leap from teaching to composing music for a living without really considering how to go about it. I was lucky to have a pal who gave me some work initially (thanks Mike), but I didn't really know where I was heading or how to get there. If ever there was a leap of faith this was it for me. So, of course, in the meantime I had doubts and paranoia and inner arguments about whether this career was going work, but (as with most things) the best way to learn how do something is to get on and do it. You can read more about the production of this song here.
Miracles and Accidents
(Acoustic guitar, piano, vocals)
I've learned in the last few years that you can never predict what's around the corner. Sometimes the most rewarding things come from the most unexpected places. So I say celebrate the unexpected.
(Piano, double bass, vocals, stair case, acoustic guitar)
I recently watched a documentary on Bruce Springsteen who explained that he changed his song writing style early on from writing about himself to making up stories, which gave him endless possibilities. I've always written in a semi-observational way, with my own experiences mixed in with friends, news etc. This song is an attempt to write from imagination rather than experience. Also, it started as the result of a production experiment you can read about here.
(Acoustic guitar, electric guitar, electric bass, drums, tambourine, vocals, piano)
This song was written on a bus (and in a school class room later that same day) while I was doing some supply teaching to supplement the income. It was summer, and Electric Circus is an actual place (and more specifically a bus stop near Surbiton). It's a straight up, breezy pop love song about leaning on someone when life gets too much.
My friend and long time music collaborator Pauly came over one evening to help with the backing vocals.
So that's all for now, hope you enjoy it!
The ramblings of a music man.