19-8-2021

Shows come and shows go but the music sticks around

The instability of the Covid era works like this. A show will come in out of the blue then dissappear into thin air like a bubble bursting as soon as it surfaces. Ive had 3 or 4 of these tenuous, transient offers in the last few weeks. Here one second gone the next. My gig list currently has 2 shows on it - they seem to have survived so far. Im not looking any further into the future than that. Everyone in the business is hedging their bets at the moment. So am I. In a way, we artists who operate on the fringes of the mainstream always done it - hedged our bets while trying to organise the future. Weve become expert at it. Nothing new there. Covid has just intensified things by putting what was already shifty onto even shiftier sands. I learnt long ago that it's best to just focus on the things I can influence, like finishing a song or an album, enjoying the day job, being with family...stuff like that. The latter is a tough call because half of my family are locked up away from me in Fortress Australia. At this point my writing begins to slow because its very hard to put how that feels into words. I move away from the pain, tell myself that Im not alone, compare my situation to the far worse situations of others who have no-one and nothing. Not a even a country. "Im lucky compared to them" I tell myself. Its a strategy I have to both pull myself up by the bootstraps but also to not feel something thats too hard to feel. But working on music - I have that, always. Its what gets me to the feelings I have that dont have words, and that I spend half my time moving away from. Shows come and shows go but all I really want to do is write music and record it so I can hear it back to see what it sounds like. What I sound like. Thats it..the shows can wait. Below is a picture of how I am hard-wired for survival. The music sticks around

 

 

5-7-2021

Working Musicians

Currently finising off the recordings we did in Studio 150, Bethlehemkerk in April. I always like to let a recording session go dormant for a month or two before coming back to it. Its a kind of litmus test for whats been commited to tape/drive - if I still like it after all that time its worth working further on. If not it isnt. Most of the tracks have been delivered to my mixer/producer Zlaya. All I know at the moment is that we created good energy together in that studio and thats what we have captured in these recordings - the whole team working IN the song together and in the moment. Thats what I hear when I listen to the session bounces. Its good.

 

22-3-2021

New album(s) on the way

Ive written swags of songs during covid and am heading into Studio 150 Bethlehemkerk in Amsterdam to record a bunch of them in April. The 9 or 10 tunes I plan to track in there belong together, but more to the point they lend themselves to being recorded with a big spacious room sound. 150 is a former church and Im looking forward to getting in there and "playing the room" with Madelief van Vlijmen on bass/piano/keys and bvs, Mischa Porte on drums/percussion and Stefan Wolfs on pedal steel and guitars. We plan to use the ambience of the big church like an extra instrument and extra band member. I thought long and hard about not hiring expensive stuido time (150 is high end of the market lush), especially in the current shit climate, but this bunch of tunes is really going to benefit from true ambience in a way that cant be done with digital modelling. I have a whole bunch of other material that Im happier to faff about with at home via file swapping without the added cost of big studio time, but these tunes are screaming room and depth. Ill be working on the home-recordings in parralell so have 2 rekkids at least, maybe 3 on the way. In the meantime, the little combo I have together for the Studio 150 sessions in April is sounding very exciting and imparting serious vibe to the material. There is an environmental theme on the new to-be-recorded record - I feel I have found a musical language that covers my feelings about it without sounding redundant or cliche. What a relief! Working title STAR & COUNTRY

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23-2-2021

Survive in style champions!

 "Letters of Gold" airplay in France, Germany, Scandinavia, Australia, America and the UK  as well as some cool reviews from all of those territories and a 600% rise in streaming figures in the last 3-4 months. 600% of nothing in financial terms is still nothing but it nevertheless signifies a rise in the number of people who are actually finding their way through the clutter of the net to the music I make. This vid here is the song  "No Sleep Until the Work is Done" which got playlisted briefly on a commercial syndicated radio station here in the Netherlands called ARROW CLASSIC ROCK. Thats a station that plays Stones, Zeppelin, Aerosmith etc...you get the drift. I dont know how they snuck this tune in amongst all of that or why even but thats kind of beside the point. The song has fraternised with the big time...it didnt stay there for long but it was there. Its not a rock song either.

 

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