Monday, 7 January 2013




Hi David, I listened to your albums 
both at home and in the car. 

Good music, keeps being interesting. 

Thanks for listening Dick. 
The Whisperer was kind of demo as I had not recorded in the studio for almost 10 years. I was just playing gigs in pubs and small clubs. As my animal behaviour work reduced in the recession I had more time to spend with my music. 
Then, with a handful of songs tor record I looked around for a local studio. I found Mr Smith who proved good on one level (I did have to ask him to reduce the reverb) and difficult on another level (had his own idea of how I should sound) 

Mr. Smith - the producer - maybe did put in reverbs a lot? 

Do you have the loose untreated tracks for remixing?

In some cases I have early demos but mainly me as vocal and guitar. I have stems for my song, ‘We know how it ends’, but only because there was talk of a remix.

Here are some questions for a blog (MySpace, Facebook, Hyves)

When writing, which comes first - lyrics, or music?

You will read in some of these blogs of mine (if you have time)  that sometimes I am playing a chord sequence and adapt it into a song (like Galileo) or words/poems come first like Small acts of Kindness.


In the case of the latter - what do you come up with first: tempo, chords, melody? 

Chords usually, but in the case of Love Thing I had a melody idea – the lyrics came to me in a flash – and I was playing with unusual reduced string capo positions. In home Fire I liked a chord sequence and had the idea for a road home song. With Spitfire is was the idea of analogy/metaphor – my wife as the Spitfire character (she can be feisty) and me as the slow burning fuse – I was born in Germany because my father was in the British army after the war and my wife in England – so, I had the opposing planes!!! 
Do you write down stuff on paper or computer? 

Or do you record new ideas?
I scribble lyrics down on scraps of paper or note pads – I write the chords down and try and go over it a lot until it is right. Valentine Light was being played and revised over a two year period during live gigs before I recorded it. It went from folk to alt country.

On average, how much time does it take between first inception and actual finalizing the idea for recording? 

Can be weeks or can be years. I have only just mastered home recording.

In the studio, do you use click-tracks? 

All of ‘The Cat that solved the String Theory and other stories’ was recorded to click tracks because my timing can be awful unless I am in a groove. I found it very difficult at first to sing without my guitar but now I understand it is better when other musicians are putting their instruments into the mix….

Did you record all the tracks separately or was there a live connection between two or more of the tracks?

Almost all were recorded separately although sometimes I stayed in the studio after a main session and rushed down a new demo (ie Do my Dance and Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter and He chose the road).

The idea was when Expat Records approached me to release an album the guys said – let’s do a great studio job that is radio playable in the USA. We hoped my music would break there but all the ideas from Expat have come to nothing. I am looking for a UK European label for a release of my new songs.
I have gone back to my acoustic roots now and recorded tracks ‘unplugged’ style as you can hear from the House of Teaspoon sessions on SoundCloud.

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