New live album out today!
‘Through The Lowlands’ is the product of almost twenty years of half-baked plans. I met the Hatton Brothers back when I’d just left school, frequenting the open mics and toilet venues of South London. They were everybody’s backing band, and they were the best rhythm section around. Over the years we moved to Kent together and set up a record label. Dave produced a handful of my albums and eventually they opened their own brilliant music venue, The Lighthouse. We’ve always talked about making music on stage together, I didn’t think it would take this long.
Then one night I saw Duncan McKay at their venue, playing the muted trumpet. He blew me away. I found out later he’d played with the likes of Primal Scream and Richard Ashcroft amongst many others. But I didn’t know any of that when I was watching him. I just knew I wanted to hear that sound on my songs. So I started thinking of an excuse to play with him, and I had the idea to do this live show and record it.
Tom Farrer jumped on board to play the Keys. He’s one of my oldest friends and we’ve been collaborating in various forms since we were kids. I knew he had to be involved with this project as soon as it started taking shape. Then there’s Dave Kirk on the pedal steel guitar who’s a bit of a local hero and a bona-fide pedal steel virtuoso. The brilliant Joel Magill of Syd Arthur and The Dawn Chorus Recording Company bought the microphones and the wires along and took on the technical side of things.
The gig was recorded live, in front of a sold out crowd at The Lighthouse back in December. We barely had any rehearsals. I wanted to keep it raw. I didn’t want the band knowing exactly what they were doing. I wanted them to still be discovering things during the show.