Friday, 28 September 2012

Gigs & Books!

Travelled to see The Fratellis play at Leadmill in Sheffied last week, they rocked the place. So good to see this outstanding British band back together again, if only for a few gigs.

Jon Fratelli is one of those amazing songwriters who seems to go completely under the radar of the heaving masses for some reason. With the exception of the wonderful 'Costello music' debut album, his work has gone largely unnoticed. For the record, aside from the excellent Fratellis follow up, 'Here we 'Stand'. Jon has previoulsy collaborated with Lou Hickey as 'Codeine Velvet Club' using his real name of Jon Lawler, for a stunning set of songs in sort of rock/jazz fusion which deserved far greater recognition than it got, plus a great solo album, 'Pyscho Jukebox'. Roger Daltrey is a big fan, which is cool by anyone's standards! His work both with and without The Fratellis is brilliant, check him out.

The Leadmill itself is a great venue, reminded me very much of The Tivoli in Brisbane, small intimate with a really great atmosphere. It isn't a place I'd visited previously, but I should have, it has a great pedigree and a deserved place in the history of British music, shame on me for not getting there before now, the brawl that broke out during 'Chelsea Dagger' only added to the authenticity! Ah I remember the first time I had a beer too!
Speaking of The Tivoli in Brissie, I hear an old acquaintance from my mis spent youth, Rick Astley, will be playing there shortly, enjoy Rick, it's a great venue!

Another gig lined up shortly is 'The Killers' in Manchester in November,really looking forward to this one too, Brandon Flowers solo album in particular has just grown and grown on me over the past couple of years, now one of my favourites. My good friend, Mrben09 has managed to trump me however, with tickets to see them in Las Vegas during the Christmas break, lucky fella! Ben has interesting views on a number of subjects and is happy to share them in his blogs, well worth checking out.
Given the mountain of literature I've read on the life of Elvis Presley, I would have imagined there was very little left to learn, until I read this book. 'Last Train To Memphis' is the definitive account of the man and the musician. Painstakingly researched, informative and entertaining, the writer, Peter Guralnick, has drawn on accounts from people who were actually there and who are very much part of the story he is telling. For the first time the myth of Elvis is stripped away leaving a description of a likeable albeit completely driven young man. It is very difficult for anyone under a certain age (including me) to fully understand the impact Elvis had on 1950's America and shortly afterwards...the planet! To quote John Lennon "Before Elvis, there was nothing!". This book goes a long way to explaining how he redefined both popular music and popular culture.
It is a quite stunning biography, one of the best I have ever read. I would highly recommend it to both Elvis fans & anyone who has an interest in the history of pop/Rock music. I'm certainly getting mileage from the above text, used it to review the book too!
Anyone who has followed this blog will know that we are having an interesting time obtaining royalties from Australian TV AirPlay, PRSformusic said we should expect payment in September, running out of days guys! We're going to have take matters into our own hands soon and travel back down under to get them! We may have to confiscate tinnies and have been warned!
On a serious note, our music has been played both on TV and radio without a single penny touching our accounts, I certainly dont expect to retire on the royalties, but I'd like to put them towards a beer!...cough up!
The new EP continues to take shape, albeit slowly. We are putting the finishing touches to a track titled 'One Day', recording session scheduled next week with our two, yes you heard it here first, our two female vocalists, more news on that to follow.

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Until next time, take care and keep smiling