I started to write this record three years ago and it's been a rocky ride. The seven tracks reflect the way I viewed the world at the moment they were written. Tales of murder and betrayal, hopelessness and isolation, joy and realisation and blokes in pubs; a social rollercoaster.
So, today I am joyous. The record that has been bubbling around for what seems like an eternity is released.
The songs have been created with as much authenticity and reality as I could muster. They are about people and places that made an impact on my soul. If you want to know more about the them, it's probably best to come out and see us live; I promise you will get where I am coming from.
I don't think any artist is truly 'solo' and certainly it's the case for me as so many very cool and talented people have helped in the creation of this work.
The studios, musicians, engineers, designers, photographers and producer are all credited on The Knife, but it's difficult to truly weigh the gravity of the performances. Space does not permit me to mention in detail everyone, but suffice to say that every person involved is most valued and humbled that they agreed to play with me. There are many pictures of the recording in the gallery section of this site.
Andy produced, engineered and played upright bass on the whole record; his constant presence throughout the creative process really helped move me to a different space. He also taught me how to sing straight plus play and record acoustic guitar. Ace.
The lyrics of the first track, Broken Man were written by my great friend, long term collaborator and musical brother, Tim Wright, with whom I have shared much joy and occasionally, crushing heartache.
The most influential person however, co-wrote one of the tracks, sang lead and backing vocals throughout the album but more importantly, gave me the strength and belief to change my path from 'balls out' rock and roll to the far more difficult delivery of a simple song in a very exposed way. She was so important, that in May, I married her which is probably a big relief to Andy :) Thank you Suzy Starlite.
We have worked hard to produce the finest sounding record we could using the best equipment, recording techniques and mastering. When listening to the 180g vinyl - by far the best medium on which to appreciate the album - you feel totally connected to the songs.
If you download, I implore you to use Bandcamp as here you can choose the quality you want from the best 24 bit / 96 kHz all the way down to mp3 at approximately the same price of iTunes and Amazon.
Since I was a full-time musician first time around, things have changed and now we release music in a very crowded arena. I hope you enjoy the record, and if you do, please buy so we can come to visit you in your hometown and make some noise.
So now I can sleep easy, well until tomorrow, when we start to record the next one :)
Thank you for reading; see you next time.
Blues at the Bay, 718 Yarm Road, Eaglescliffe TS16 0JE Stockton-on-tees, UK
Saltburn Blues Club, Markse Mill Lane, Saltburn-by-the-Sea, TS12 1QA, UK