It's December.... 2020 is almost done!
It is unlikely that any of us could have predicted what a strange and turbulent year this would have been when we celebrated New Years Eve, hugging, shaking hands and singing the 'Auld Lang Syne' with our nearest and dearest on the last day of 2019. We could never have imagined that planning this New Years Eve would involve 'tier systems', mask wearing and having to eat a 'substantial' meal in every pub we enter for a pint. One thing is for sure, this one will be a very different affair, more a feed up than a knees up!
My views on the coronavirus restrictions are no doubt shared by millions up and down the country as we try to navigate through the mountains of rules and regulations just to go about our everyday lives. It's a pain in the arse to be honest and we just hope that it doesn't go on too much longer.
Musically, the end of this year is looking a lot busier for me than I had imagined even a month ago, when we were ushered into yet another lockdown.
I have a sprinkling of festive gigs and a small wedding to look forward to and also some exciting music releases which I have been working on.
Firstly, I have been promoting the single 'Legs' from my album 'Lanes', with both a live and lyric video, which I released last week, to some lovely reviews. It's a song that I am very proud of both in terms of the songwriting and the production that Dave and I achieved - with help from some stellar musicians. It's an important song in the context of the album and I am glad it is getting its time in the sun (or snow!)
I am lucky to have had some amazing artwork by the excellent Jack Burrell (Belle Illustration) to help promote it, and you can watch the lyric video here:
Belle Illustration: https://www.belleillustration.com/
During the rest of December I will also be working on a brand new release for next year; a new concept song which I am excited about sharing - details to follow!
Before then, I have two Christmas videos to release, one a cover of Liam Gallaghers 'All You're Dreaming Of' and the other a Christmas song which was written last year, but did not get released due to other projects. This year I have decided to put it out into the world because I think 2020 needs this vibe. Now, some of you who know me well will know that my old laptop packed up back in October. I was able to rescue everything, but some of the files were not able to be edited, so I was left with how this song stood when I worked on it last year. It's not the perfect recording as I was unable to use all live instruments, but it gives a good idea of what I was going for, and for the purpose of being behind a video, I think it works well. It is called 'No More Crying - It's Christmas' and will be available to view on 18th December.
My Liam Gallagher cover will then be released on 21st December in time for Christmas!
So as you can see, I have been keeping relatively busy during lockdown 2.0 and I have also really enjoyed doing the live streams each week. For musicians, and people that live alone like I do, the streams really help give my week some structure and contact with the outside world (via online). I have had some great support from followers who love the concept, so I will also be doing a special festive edition at a date to confirmed very soon. Thank you to everyone who has joined me for those shows.
So what are we left to reflect on as we hurtle towards another new year (and a No Deal Brexit!)? I think my take out from this year is never take anything for granted; people, time or your freedom. If this year has proved anything, it is that we are all just fragile beings, with less control over what happens to us than we probably ever thought. In the same breath, I think it is important to note that we have to keep fighting for our freedoms, justice and fairness. And in a year when I was part of my favourite project I have ever done, based around kindness with 'Be More Kind' I think that message is as important as ever.
For 2021 we can have some hope. Whatever your views on the vaccine - (I am a sceptic but not an anti-vaxxer) there does seem to be some optimism for a return to many of the activities we love. I would echo Russell Brand in saying that I am not in favour of a return to how things used to be. In my view society was hugely unequal, divided and selfish before Covid. Some of that has been borne out in the various lockdowns and restrictions, but I harbour a forlorn hope that we can take some good out of this situation and perhaps strive for more fairness in society, business and life in general. We must hope, otherwise what point is there?!
I shall be releasing 2-3 singles throughout the year so stay tuned, and also hopefully a few music videos along the way. Touring plans are likely to be shelved, but expect the odd live gig popping up from time to time. Until then - see you on the live streams!
Some dates for your diary:
LEGS LYRIC VIDEO: OUT NOW
18TH DECEMBER - 'NO MORE CRYING IT'S CHRISTMAS VIDEO'
20th DECEMBER - CHRISTMAS GIG - THE CROSS KEYS, SAFFRON WALDEN
21ST DECEMBER - 'ALL YOU'RE DREAMING OF' LIVE VIDEO
TBC - CHRISTMAS SPECIAL LIVE STREAM