Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Thank You

Thank you for the comments and emails, that's a big help!
The next stage will be to actually read my book. I am making a train journey later this week and I'll take it with me along with Matthew Bannister's White Boys, White Noise which will probably be a very interesting bit of reading alongside it. This sort of book needs to have a framework to hold it in.

I am mourning the end of my lovely Songbook module which has been written out of the course at the University of the West.
It nurtured Jamie McDermott of the Irrepressibles, Emmy the Great, and Rob Diament of Temposhark (who used some of the songs he wrote for their first album) amongst others, and gave the University a runner-up in the Peter Whittingham Song Writing Competition two years ago (Alex Lipinsky); this year The University of West won with Sherika Sherrard who had won an internal competition run by yours truly.
I think there was always a problem in that the course it ran within had a focus on people making money within the music business system, whereas my sole concern was that everybody who did the module wrote the best songs they possibly could, no matter how weird that was.
It embraced students with aspirations to write musicals, electronica artists, rappers, producers, folkies, soul, R'n'B, gospel, comedy and even poetry.
I am hugely proud of the guests that I invited to talk to them over the years: Pete Waterman, Billy Bragg, Linton Kwesi Johnson, JC001, Martin Stephenson, John Hegley, Billy Childish (three times), Michelle Escoffery, Enid Williams (Girlschool), Carroll Thompson, Edwyn Collins, Gina Birch, Paul Laventhol (King Kurt), Dubulah and Neil Sparkes from Temple of Sound, Katy Carr, Jamie McDermott, Bid (Monochrome Set), Pete Sinfield who writes hits for Celine Dion. And lots of industry types too.
I am sure I will think of more in the middle of the night!

Speaking of the Monochrome Set, I gather they are re-forming for a tour of Japan in the Autumn. They are just so absolutely brilliant (volume, tone, brilliance, they got the lot) that you must go to see them if you can. Lester Square put me on the guest list for the Cherry Red Records 40th birthday party and I saw them play a couple of years ago. I danced like a demented flea and came away feeling 18 again!

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