Good evening everyone! This is the first time i've ever written a blog, i'll do my best to keep it to-the-point and interesting for you all.
So, last week, myself and a few of my Robbie Boyd Band brethren enjoyed a brief jaunt in the beautiful region of north Italy. We played some great little shows in Milan and Brescia, and got some time to head to Music Manor Studios in Brescia (http://www.musicmanor.it) to lay down a new tune which will be hitting iTunes soon. Big shout out to our tour manager and owner of Music Manor, Mauro, for being such a legend all week. It's always an enjoyable experience playing overseas, but I particularly love the Italian ethos of eating, drinking and gigging late into the night. For the most part, we'd soundcheck, eat, drink, eat some more, and maybe be starting our set by 11pm if we were lucky - and this was the time that the venues were the busiest! Brilliant.
It was great to play at Zog Bar in Milan again (they serve these absolutely GIANT cocktails. Lethal.), always a great crowd there - and it was cool to get to hang out with Francesco Sàrcina (frontman of Italian band 'Le Vibrazioni') again. He's literally more rock and roll than the Rolling Stones. It's outrageous. What a guy.
I had my international debut as a bassist in the Blue Jeans venue in Brescia. Great fun. It's funny how learning a set on an instrument you don't normally play deepens your understanding of the compositions as a whole. Especially with bass - if you don't know the changes inside out, you're going to have a bad time, and its probably going to sound a bit awful. That's not to say I didn't make some mistakes. If anyone's got any video from that gig, i'm certain there's a few 'interesting' root notes being thrown into the mix!
Plus, Italians know how to do coffee. Seriously. Italian coffee will change your life. Mornings will never be the same again. Don't say I didn't warn you.
Here's a couple of snaps from my phone...
Here's the fantastic Peter Conway soundchecking at our headline gig upstairs at The Garage, Islington the other night. It's always a pleasure playing in Peter's band. Great music, great musicians, great fun. Thanks to all who came down. If you weren't there, why not check out Peter's SoundCloud? There's a couple of free downloads on there, including 'Hear Me Now' taken from the forthcoming album 'Stay', featuring myself on Lapsteel.
Go on. It's free. You know you want to. You know you want the tunes. You can't resist them. Face it, you're practically clicking the link now. You can't help yourself. It's like a reflex isn't it? Don't worry. It happens to the best of us. Its okay.
Also, don't forget to like Peter's Facebook page to keep up to date with gigs, releases, tours, etc etc.
April is looking like a busy month. Starting with a week's worth of playing Lapsteel at Spring Harvest, Skegness (http://www.springharvest.org/) with Lynsey Berry leading worship. Really excited about this. I'll be playing alongside some fantastic musicians and friends, and no doubt witnessing God do some really amazing things.
You should all have a listen to Lynsey's music too. She's a real talent, and is releasing her second EP very soon! (get the first one too, because I played the mandolin and lapsteel on it!) Check her out here; www.lynseyberry.com
Sticking with the church vibe, you can catch me every Saturday morning at Wimbledon International church, doing my best to keep my head above water with some incredibly talented musicians. The church is putting on a seven-week series with the emphasis on Heroes, and finding personal identity. If that sounds good to you, pop along! I'll also be found in the worship bands at both St Mary's, Marylebone and St Stephen's, Twickenham on varying Sundays of the month.
Perhaps the most exciting part of April though, is going to be heading to the studio with Bill Laurance from Snarky Puppy, to record some tunes that Bill and I have been working on. It's gonna be nuts. I'll be working with some great friends/musos on these tunes, and I can't wait to show you all the results. For anyone that doesn't know who Snarky Puppy are, check this out;
There you go. Is your mind blown? Thought so.
I'll leave it there for now I guess!