For me, 2021 has been a surprisingly good year musically. I got my Mojo back, I've written more songs than I have done since the early 1980's and the feedback on them has been remarkably good. We even went out to Portugal and recorded half an albums worth of material, with my old mate Boz Boorer producing. We are planning to go back in the new year to finish it off. I just need to write a couple more numbers and rehearse them. I've never taken lead vocals in the band before, not particularly liking the sound of my own voice. However I wrote a song for Lee Thompson of Madness, who is a mate and when I played the demo to everyone, they said that I should do it myself. This gave me a bit of confidence to try and develop my own style. I'm never going to be Marvin Gaye, but I've written songs that suit what I do. One of my mates jokingly calls the new material SKRAP - a cross between Ska and Rap (at least that's what I think he was saying ;)
A couple of weeks ago, I set myself a challenge. To write, rehearse, record and make a video of a new song in two weeks. When I explained this to my bandmates, they were sceptical, however it has come out rather well. For the video, I used an old video my mum had of me starring in a Heinz Beans Commercial when I was six (yes really, it even won an award at The Cannes Festival). I also spliced in some old video footage of Mill Hill and old pictures. It is an unashamedly nostalgic piece called Sunday in the 70's. I got a a mate, Richard Logue, who collects vintage tellies to help out with some great footage of one of his tellies in action, which gives it a really authentic feel.
Anyway, here is the number. Enjoy.
That's enough of my own music, what about the gigs I've seen. Surprisingly, not having seen a gig for 15 months, in June live music started up again. I've seen some banging gigs. Here are a few highlights.
My first gig back, I chronicled here. It was Ray Gelato at Ronnie Scotts and was wonderful!
Here's a selection of a few. Real highlights were The Average White Band at Festival Hall, Madness and Squeeze at Wembley Arena and The Specials at The Roundhouse. It is just good to be out enjoying ourselves again. Lets hope that 2022 is a classic year. When the plague subsides, get out there and support the local music scene. There are some great places to see music. Follow the Barnet Music Facebook page to find out all of the best local gigs