…was a busy year! I started it by submitting the History Of Song module presentation video for my MMus course and then continued straight into a series of enjoyable and successful collaborations with some highly talented writers for the next module. After that came the biggie double module, a 12-song portfolio of studio recordings, which formed the final submission. For me this was the whole raison d’être of doing the course.
The portfolio formed the basis of two demo CDs I was able to take on a promo visit to the US, a trip for which I have to thank Graham Turner for taking the time to organise, and Daisy Manners for being such a lovely companion.
The Taxi Rally in LA was a smörgåsbord of enlightening seminars and networking. After that came some great collaborations in LA, which will hopefully be finished in the New Year, and closing the show at The Mint with renditions of Evening Sun and Juniper Juice. Apart from that the line ‘LA is a great big freeway’ proved to be entirely true!
After LA and a hair-raising night-time drive from Nashville airport we met up with Lorna of Lorna Flowers Productions in The Gulf Shores for two days of enjoyable shows at The Frank Brown International Songwriters Festival and Lorna then generously introduced us to the ways of Nashville. There were some interesting experiences at an Alabama gas station, being caught speeding by a cop and running out of gas (literally and metaphorically) the afternoon before Thanksgiving. Playing two songwriter rounds in Nashville was also a highlight for me.
It was great to get some good reactions from publishers and supervisors on the trip and from the UK as well, so I’m hoping that next year will be a period of consolidation.
On top of all that we at London Songwriters held 13 highly enjoyable and successful meetups and we are looking forward to 2013’s events.
Oh…and I got to go to Munich for Chelsea’s Champion’s League triumph
All the best for the coming year!
Here I am in LA waiting in a queue for the Taxi Road Rally registration. It should be an interesting and hopefully fruitful three days of seminars and networking. After a couple of further days in LA we will be flying to Nashville and driving to Gulf Shores, Alabama for the Frank Brown Songwriting Festival and then back to Nashville
It’s my first time in The States and I’m amazed it seems quite real rather than like in the movies But then I’m amazed when I go north of Watford that they have normal things like petrol stations and supermarkets.
It’s been a mad busy time since I last wrote. I finished my Masters Degree with a 12-song portfolio, which received some great feedback. London Songwriters continued with regular meetups culminating in a highly successful appearance at The Bloomsbury festival, where we had a stall and provided individual open mic performances in the street.
The busyness continues!
Hard to believe it’s been three months since my last update but that’s what songwriting Masters Degree course deadlines, impromptu day trips to Munich for the Champions League Final and 18-day holidays to Provence do!
It was a rush to get my five collaborations in for the MMus but they were demo’d successfully and the module passed! Very pleased with all of them and the inevitable rewrites will make them even better.
The latter will undoubtedly form part of the culmination of the MMus which is a 40 minute recorded showcase of 12 or so songs by the end of September. A daunting schedule of recording awaits me this summer, so, new bass, acoustic and electric guitar strings have been ordered and fitted, software upgraded, songs short-listed, rewriting quill sharpened…
Flights have also been booked for a trip to LA and Nashville in November…my first visit to the States!
Meanwhile myself and my co-organisers continue to lead the London Songwriters Meetup group. A fantastic talk by pro-songwriter Jez Ashurst in June on the realities of the music business was highly appreciated by all those who attended.
And now…the studio is calling me…
What a busy month!
I attended a number of industry events, one of which led to an offer to publish one of my songs. Four days later I also received another offer for a different song, which resulted from a SongLink pitch.
I attended two more city Showcase events and am continuing to co-write with a number of partners, mostly on a modern pop tip.
There were two London Songwriters events, both of which were well attended and highly enjoyable. The second was at the Garnish School Of Sound in Hackney, featuring the ‘Hit Formula’ devised by the knowledgeable and entertaining songwriting teacher Alex Von Soos.
Yesterday was the second in BASCA’s very informative Professional Development series of seminars chaired by Stuart Worthington and featuring a panel of Sarah Rodges, Julian Nott, Jake Gosling, Malcom Buckland and Kevin O’Byrne of Kobalt Music. The subject was…publishing!
On top of all that the sun is shining and for the moment Chelsea’s fortunes have seemingly revived! Write on
I attended a masterclass hosted by City Showcase at the offices of PPL in London on Wednesday. I didn’t know what to expect but it was great to be sat with 25 other songwriters in a room with a panel of four industry experts. Sean Devine, Tim Fraser, Paul Tipler and Julian Hinton spoke about what general attributes were important to a song’s success and took the time to critique pretty much everyone’s songs by the end of the evening. It was nice to have my song Evening Sun appreciated too.
For a cost of £9 per year I would recommend joining City Showcase to all aspiring artists and Songwriters.
I have a number of collaborations already on the go or in the planning stage – very excited at the prospect of what songs might come out of it all!
March’s London Songwriters Meetup is set for Sunday the 11th with special guest speaker Sophie Daniels from The Institute Of Contemporary Music Performance.
I spent last week at Corsham Court attending a series of introductory lectures for the latest module of my Master’s degree in Songwriting. They were full of useful information from Davey Ray Moor, Joe Bennett, Richard Parfitt, Jez Ashurst, Caryl Parry-Jones, Cliff Jones, David Stoll, Chrysalis Publishing and the incomparable David McAlmont, who sang an amazing set of past and present showstoppers to close the week.
My recording laptop died in the middle of it all, so that will be away with HP for ten days or so – frustrating! The hard drives are perfectly fine and no data is lost (so far!) but it’s disappointing that something as fundamental as the motherboard or CPU or video chip should go after only two years.
Sunday saw the latest London Songwriters meetup group get-together and thanks to everybody who contributed so splendidly to a wonderful afternoon of collaboration, networking and songshare. Looking forward to next month!
It’s been a busy start to the year. The deadline for my Bath Spa MMus Master’s Degree songwriting module submission passed on Friday 13th at 23:59…hopefully the essay and accompanying webcam presentation will at least get a pass after all that intensive work (edit 31/1: it did!). This module covered The History Of Song in the context of the influences on my own songwriting. I got everything in there from Flamenco, Jazz Standards, Bacharach, The Beatles, Springsteen, The Cars, Norah Jones through to Hannah Montana, Allstar Weekend, Jessie J and Katy Perry.
15th January saw the latest London Songwriters meetup go well at our new venue, The Freemasons Arms in Covent Garden. Next one is booked for the 12th Feb.
Was out and about last week, taking in a Ralph Murphy Masterclass at the ICMP, an ICMP Songwriter’s Circle at The North London Tavern and finally on Friday a City Showcase open mic at The Regal Room. Some particularly fine songwriting and performances at the latter!
Time to get down to some writing!
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If anyone wants to publish, license, cover or perform any of the material please let me know!