In Jan 2012 I recorded a BBC Wales radio session for Bethan Elfyn in Cardiff. The producer Darren Broome and I stayed in touch and worked on a track together for the Pulco album (The Mapleson Cylinders) that I was beginning to make at the time. I was also in the process of putting together ‘The Man Of Lists’ for release that year so I sort of stopped working on the new album while I got that finished.
I was recording on a hand help Zoom H4 recorder at the time which I found difficult to work with so when I received iPad for my birthday I decided to put the Mapleson album on hold and start Clay Cutlery instead. The Mapleson songs just weren’t coming together either so I thought it best to leave them and do something else.
Having had a years or so away from the songs I decided to have a listen to them again recently and they didn’t actually sound that bad so my plan is to release them bit by bit as free singles over the coming months, the first of which is Hardships & Kings.
Click the link below to hear the tracks and get your free download
This week we are mourning the loss of the Welsh Music Foundation. As an organisation it provided support and industry advice to Welsh bands & musicians for over 14 years and is a huge blow for music in our country.
This week however also sees the release of a new book called ‘On Making Music’ by my friend and BBC broadcaster Adam Walton. The book is a wide-ranging guide for original music-makers, encouraging originality and covering many different aspects of being a musical artist in 2014: songwriting, recording, getting gigs, making money, DIY releases etc.
I firmly believe that some of the industry support and guidance lost due to the demise of the WMF will be regained through the knowledge and experience that has been put in to this book.
It took Adam a year to write and is 400 pages long. In his own words ‘It’s exhaustive but hopefully not exhausting’
The book features contributions from, and exclusive interviews with, a range of influential artists: Alan Holmes, Andrew Falkous, Angharad Trwbador, Badly Drawn Boy, Charlie Francis, Clive Langer, Colin Newman, David Gedge, David Wrench, Deke Leonard, Donal Whelan, E, Elliott Smith, Frank Black / Black Francis, Georgia Ruth, Gruff Rhys, Huw Stephens, Ian Brown, Jarvis Cocker, Jeremy Gluck, Jim Bob, Jimi Goodwin, Jo Riou, John Hywel Morris, John Rostron, Jon Langford, Julia Ruzicka – Prescriptions, Kim Fowley, Kristin Hersh, Liam Gallagher, Manda Rin, Marcus Warner, Mark Daman Thomas / Shape Records, Mark Foley, Martin Carr, Matt Robin, Matthew Evans, Mike Peters, Neil Innes, Owain Trwbador, Owen Powell, Paul Draper, Paul Gray, Polly Thomas, Ray Davies, Rhydian Dafydd, Richard Hawkins, Richard Parfitt, Ritzy Bryan, Stephen Moshi Moshi, Tjinder Singh, Tom Robinson, Turnstile Music, Van McCann…
The book can be downloaded HERE
Adam says that the intention for On Making Music is for it to be as accessible and affordable as possible so he is kindly making the guide available as a donation based download !!
I think that ‘On Making Music’ is set to become something of a standard resource for all of us who record and release music here in Wales and beyond and I recommend that you grab a copy NOW !!
Writing The Wrongs is inspired by our joint love of home recording and home recorded music and it also features some lovely strings courtesy of Ian Thistlethwaite.
The full story behind the album and the circumstances that brought us together can be found over at the Poundstore Riot WEBSITE
Over a period of time we assembled a 29 minute piece entitled The Wires 2012. The album is a sound art collage created from Jude’s new poetry collection of the same name.
Jude works as an archivist on the Reuters collection and her book interprets selective international news stories of 2012 in a continuous stream.
I took Jude’s recordings of the work and collaged them with audio recordings of my day-to-day sounds and events including a ride on an open top London tour bus, preliminary completions for the Urdd National Eisteddfod and the Star Wars exhibition at LEGOLAND Windsor.
The album is out NOW Via Pethau Garw and can be ordered from the Bandcamp link below
For more information regarding Jude and her work please visit her website
In the 17 years since the first Derrero album was released a lot has changed in the way that way music is distributed and consumed. Back in 1997 the ‘Blue’ album came on Cd & Vinyl and that was your lot.
Once the band split that was pretty much the end of the story for those songs ! They became a distant memory in the minds of those that fondly remembered the band.
After Derrero played a short set together two years ago I proudly announced that I’d take responsibility for making our old albums available again in a digital format and then promptly forgot all about it until now !!
This week however marks the return of Derrero !!! or at least the return of our music.
If you are still of a mind to be interested in such things all of the 3 albums & 3 EP’s that Derrero released between 1997 – 2002 can be downloaded for free at the link below
If you do grab a copy of one of those releases please take a moment to give us a mention on the social network of your choice.
Get your Derrero HERE
Here is a FREE album for you album that I’ve been meaning to post for some time now.
The Crog Loft Music Club features a load of demos, field recordings and rarities that have been up on Soundcloud for ages.
It’s nice that Myfi’s Bags & Song For Nel are now available after all this time
Anyway, you can download them for free now at the Pulco Bandcamp site!! Enjoy
I’m working on a special print copy at the moment but you can get your hands on my words, so to speak, from the link below .
BUY MY LOVELY BOOK HERE
Here is one of the poems from the book so you can see how ace it is ;0)
A Gulf Of Understanding
In North Wales
We sit here
Safe within walls
Having lives, moments,
Existing in bubbles
Of self preservation
That blanket our
Barred window bodies
We heave with relief
When we survive another day
Making a deal
Out of the trivial
In domestic routine
Coloured and whites in the basket
Tomorrows football boots cleaned before school
But how weird is
this world of reasonable fortune
Which blinkered as we are
Forms the gulf of our understanding
When at that exact same moment
The cake bakes,
The kettle clicks as it boils
Or Eastenders starts
At that exact same moment
On the other side of the world
Or the opposite side of the road
Someone else dies
In the latest Cloudcast Liam and Dan Nichols, singer and washboard player with Railroad Bill Skiffle Group choose their favourite skiffle records from the 1950s. There’s also a bit of skiffle history thrown in.!!
You can join the Riffs & Quiffs Facebook group, HERE
And I recommend you check out Cloudcast #11 HERE
The package includes a full colour postcard containing credits and a download code, a story and picture A4 sheet and a mechanical head badge housed in a poly bag !! All this for £2 inc postage
(Update - 10.06.14 – There are a couple of copies still left !!)
The B’side of the single is a cover version of an ace tune by Ben Mason. His new album Dogs N Yaa can be heard here
The show is presented by my old friend and collaborator Jude Cowan Montague who along with Rob Edwards and guest artists, mix news analysis, art & poetry to discuss and creatively respond to stories making the headlines around the world.
Last week (Feb 01) The team played some of the collaborative sound collage stuff that Jude & I have been working on as well as a piece that I wrote exclusively for the show.
You can listen back below
The News Agents can be heard every Saturday between 2.30 & 3.30 pm over at Resonance FM