Behind The Song Nottingham Sounds

Race To The Top

Stunning MCs like taser shocks, I got a jet pack flow, I’m taking off
A breathless hip hop sprint to the finish line. A collaboration between The Afterdark Movement and Deeper Than Forever ft. Bru-C and Kayfficial

Download      mp3 demo

Behind The Song

All credit to Afterdark’s Bru-C for the concept of trading ever shortening lines with DTF’s Kayfficial. Afterdark sax player Ed Reisner came up with the initial riffs and chord sequence. I suggested stretching out the chord sequence for the bridge to build tension and made a few tweaks here and there. Former pupil Sarah Kerry produced and played live drums and Nina Smith added and arranged backing vocals.

A Blog's Life Former Pupils News Nottingham Sounds

News May 2016

I was honoured to have my rap track My Ride (download it here) featured on a recent episode of the NUSIC New Music Podcast (ep 127) with a whole bunch of great Nottingham artists including Mez who did a ‘real’ Nottingham rap and A Dee – who I worked with briefly when he was a member of Deeper Than Forever.

Download the episode here

I also got to throw in my 2 cents on a songwriting roundtable with heavy hitters like Gary Ewer, Ari Herstand and Kevin Thomas over at the One Minute Song website

Read the post here

Nottingham Sounds

Supergroup Bootcamp 2015

Last week was super busy, but super productive. I spent all week working with Nina Smith on a musical ‘bootcamp’ for County Youth Arts Supergroup project. In previous years this has led to the creation of New Communication and Deeper Than Forever. This year’s crop promises to be just as talented.

We set them a number of high pressure challenges around songwriting, performing and rehearsing…

And it was great to see a bunch of young people who didn’t know each other bonding so well by the end of the week…


Get more info on County Youth Arts music projects here

Former Pupils Nottingham Sounds

Deeper Than Forever: Now It’s Over (BBC Introducing)

Here’s an video from a BBC Introducing gig a couple of years ago. Deeper Than Forever is a band I worked with that came out of the County Youth Arts ‘Supergroup’ project and Now It’s Over is the first track we wrote together.

And here’s the band’s first ever gig at the Palace Theatre – with me filling in as session guitarist!

I’ll hopefully be starting work on a new supergroup project in September 2015.

EP Diary

EP #2 Diary – Part 5

As winter starts to draw nearer I feel like hibernating. By about 4:30pm I feel like I’ve been sedated. At the weekend I grabbed my son’s electric and forced myself to do some lead guitar and luckily my ‘neighbour’ was quiet enough to get something down. It took way too long (of course) and I became conscious that I was losing the groove after 3 or 4 takes but it was taking me 20 or 30 to really get happy with my note choices. I spent 2 hours recording 30 seconds only to totally rerecorded it the following night. I’m unimpressed with my soloing but it does the job of lifting the track in a few spots.

I still have a bits of vocals to do, but last night I was involved in a serious accident while travelling back from the sessions Nina Smith and I have been running with Deeper Than Forever. The bus we were on had a head-on collision with a car – killing both it’s occupants instantly. The bus passengers suffered various injuries, Nina lost a couple of teeth and I injured my throat hitting it on the seat in front. So apart from just dealing with the shock/aftermath, I’m probably not going to be able to sing/teach properly for a little while. But maybe I’ll be able to prepare Fingernails for mixing if I feel up to it.

Former Pupils Nottingham Sounds

Deeper Flint Communication Forever

The last few weeks have been a manic series of gigs – everything from a solo gig, a 6 year olds ukelele club playing in the open air, to Deeper Than Forever‘s BBC Introducing/Single Launch at the Old Library in Mansfield

The guys did brilliantly, and you can hear the single here…

…and on the NUSIC podcast here. The group I worked with last year New Communication were also on the bill. They’re turning into a formidable live band.

Both bands were featured on the BBC Introducing radio show along with Heather Flint, a former member of New Communication who was debut her new solo EP Interest in Me

Check out more former students here

Former Pupils Let's Build An Airport EP Nottingham Sounds Showing Up

I Am Studio Face!

Did two cool musical things today (apart from teaching and buying Billy Joel CD’s from Fopp!).

First – I launched a facebook forum for Beatles Songwriting Academy. If you’d like to help me with questions, advice, links or opinions as I blog through all 211 Beatles songs please head over there and join up!

Second – I had an evening session with Deeper Than Forever recording a ‘live in the studio’ track which should be out tomorrow. I was blown away with this band of one-take wonders most of whom are still at school/college.

Here’s a vid of their first ever live performance last month.

A little while ago I noticed Let’s Build An Airport had gotten a review on iTunes! By a complete stranger! And he liked it! “Beautifully understated soundscapes with lovely melodies and chords that might just crumble at any minute” indeed!

Get Let’s Build An Airport here

Church Music FAWM Quotes Showing Up

Church Of Snark

Edited another FAWM kid’s composition ‘Midnight Curry Blues’ and then writing in the evening with Deeper Than Forever (a great live vid on the way from them).

Was reminded today of a post I wrote that was popular AND got me in a lot of trouble – Top 10 Reasons NOT To Write Songs For Your Church and a funny old FAWM song that I did write for and about my church (in fact I think this was my first ever FAWM song) If You’re Here This Morning.

Apropos nothing, here’s a few snarky (but probably true) quotes about ‘christian music

The church has been accused of many things, but being musically diverse is not one of them

Kyle Campos

Christian music is a genre that doesn’t sound like anything

Brandon Ebel, quoted in Andrew Beaujon: Body Piercing Saved My Life (p.62)

Quentin Crisp once said, “A lifetime of listening to disco music is a high price to pay for one’s sexual preference.” I can’t imagine anything worse than being forced to pay for my salvation by listening to worship music for the rest of my days.

Andrew Beaujon: Body Piercing Saved My Life (p.158)

And here’s an ‘exception to the rule’ Gungor