After the weekends return to Widnes Ring O Bells, where I first performed in 2004, my good friend Greg Oldfield, host and class A soul rebel mentioned he had a video of that very gig and here it is. Many thanks Greg for sending it on. Its twelve years old, the between song stuff is a little cringey, the performances are definitely more punky, more angular, and less tuneful if you want to get picky, the hair in face thing yes that too a kind of camouflage. Its a long video , the whole gig some 40 minutes or so, but if you fancy a trip down memory lane well here you go. Oddly I did ‘Billy Fisher’, the poem that opens the gig, this last weekend in Widnes – its now delivered as an introductory poem to ‘No Reply’ a song about the end of love as I knew it, a kind of what goes around comes around thing. Widnes has long been a favourite place of mine to play, the crowds may be small but they’re perfectly formed, there’s a respectful appreciation there, people listen and engage and as a performer you can’t really ask for more. Here’s to more of the same. Greg Oldfield, who was also on the bill in 2004, played with me at the recent gig too. He is a very fine soulful singer songwriter you should have on your radar, heres a SOUNDCLOUD link to his work. Hope you at least have a little look at this video and feel free to share do. For the record the setlist for the night was…
I Work For God
Jesus Stole My Girlfriend
Everlasting Teenage Bedroom
Punk Rock Dreaming
Confessions of a Sperm Donor
We Tried To Drown Our Music Teacher in 1974
Calm Me Down
We Didn’t Paint Our Nails When We Fought the Germans
Rob and I just did a couple of lovely intimate shows, one in Widnes the other in Chester, if you were there or there about thanks for the support, we really enjoyed them. Shame the English Motorway System was in total meltdown, a five hour drive to Widnes and a 5 hour drive home from Chester on Saturday didn’t help but I’m not about to start moaning here. The good news is we are playing all of the SILVER MEADOWS album live for the first time on THURSDAY 17th November 2016, at Naked Lunch the fabulous vegan cafe at 431 Smithdown Road, L15. Its one of my favourite places to be having recently been refurbished and re modelled following the sad passing of Ged Connor Brennon, a lovely friend and a wonderful raconteur. In many ways having the gig at the cafe is a tribute to his legacy. Please come early as spaces will be limited, the night kicks off at 8pm, so best make a dinner date of it do. The band who recorded Silver Meadows, Bobby Kewley on bass and Paul Tsanos on drums will playing, with the fabulous Rob Steadman on keys. It should be a great night, and the first time we’ve played the album in its entirety with the band. I’m really looking forward to it.
Silver Meadows is available right now from the usual download sites, iTunes, Amazon and Bandcamp and on CD from the website. You can also stream the album via SOUNDCLOUD but please do consider a purchase if you can bare to part with a tenner, every little helps.
The Stage Play/Musical for SILVER MEADOWS is now finished, we’re still shopping it around and talking to various actor/director/producer types re next steps. We have plans in place but I’ll leave sharing them for now until they are a little more concrete as these things can be somewhat precarious. The Stage Play was written by Liverpool writer Ian Salmon and is based on the characters from the songs and the episodes within them, he has strung together a narrative that reflects them quite brilliantly.
The latest demos for the new album are being added to Soundcloud, I’ll probably end up re recording these in the new year once the new band has a had a chance to play them live, the new band is very much in embryo, once its all sorted I’ll be making announcements, so to speak and hopefully putting shows together for next year as well as a few local dates sooner than that. The new album is very much themed around the midlands, reflections and stories, past and present. Heres ‘The Malvern Winter Gardener’, a song inspired by the venue, Malvern Wintergardens, which was a staple live touring band stop off for most of the 70s and early eighties, I went several times as a teenager, getting there was always possible, getting back was the problem, I’d have to call my Dad to come and pick us up and wasn’t always best pleased, or blag a lift off someone else’s..I’ve cast the protagonist of the song as a faded rock star, living out his days in Malvern, working as a gardener and looking back on his triumphs and tragedy, my discussions with local musicians seem to have found there way into the song all be it in a round about fashion…hope you like it, and do feel free to share.
Also recently added is ‘Golden City’ a song with San Francisco pretensions disguised as a Chinese takeaway here in Blackpole… a song about change, new life, new hope, new fears…
I’ve also added the Silver Meadows album to Soundcloud for anyone who wants to hear the songs in their entirety [and hopefully buy the album], available most easily from the site here or via any number of download sites, iTunes Amazon etc – its also on BANDCAMP
Rob and I have a couple of shows in the immediate pipeline, on Friday 21st Oct we play Ring O Bells in Widnes, I’ve played there many times over the years and its always a great little gig. On Saturday 22nd we play OXJAM in Chester, its an early show at 7 pm, big charity line up, in clouding Reid Anderson who is quite the most special of talents, you should come along and check him out, he’s on just before us, the venue is The Golden Eagle