Neil Young’s 1974 album, On The Beach has always been one of my favourite records. I always loved the stripped down instrumentation and production and many of the songs are like uncut poetic gems, all the more beautiful for their raw unpolished quality. Like Springsteen’s Nebraska, this album captures the full scope of a songwriter at the peak of creativity, uncensored and essential. Here’s my version of the song, For the turnstiles, one of my favourites from the album and a song that playfully evokes mortality and the exit or turnstile that awaits us all at one point or another. In hommage to his original banjo part, I played the song with slide guitar and fretless banjo.
Living through lockdown is a challenge for all us in different ways but I’m lucky to have my studio at home allowing me to carry on working.
I’m participating like most artists in playing a few live shows and songs from my home and I will carry on doing so until lockdown ends. At least in this way our confinement isn’t entirely deprived of music and art that we need daily to lift the spirits!
As many of you know I’m an unconditional fan of the late, great Reunion island songwriter, Alain Peters. I recorded his song, “Mangé pour le cœur” on my 2014 album with cellist, Vincent Segal but I hadn’t yet recorded a song of his for my collection of covers, Songs I Love. Now that I’m more than half way into vol 2 of the series, I felt like it was time to go back to the Créole master to pick another of his beautiful songs to play.
This year, I’ve also been working on a new Hear My Voice ep for my label, Beating Drum with singer and percussionist, Oriane Lacaille and so I took the opportunity of her stay with us to record the Alain Peters song Caloubadia together.
Orianne’s father the great accordionist and singer Rene Lacaille grew up and played with Alain for many years in the 70’s. Singing Caloubadia with Oriane, allowed me to connect to the rich cultural roots of that magnificent island the other side of the world and pay tribute to one of its greatest songs.
I had the joy of singing in Paris in the wonderful Art Nouveau church of St Jean de Montmartre.
With Anne Gouverneur on violin and Maeva le Berre on cello, we sang and played songs from my recent ep Hear My Voice as well as many old favourites.
The concert was entirely acoustic with no mics nor sound system. With our voices and instruments resonating to the full within the beautiful acoustics and with such a beautiful quality of silence, the two nights were truly unforgettable.
Although I generally prefer that no trace remains of the concert outside of our memory of it and that’s the beauty of a totally acoustic show, I still wanted to share a little fragment of the concert with you.
In order to give you some sense of the acoustics and of the nature of playing without amplification, we just placed one single omni directional microphone on the ground in front of us to capture the performance.
If you have headphones, put them on and dive in to the sound and enjoy!
Vidéo by Tim Hilst
Good news folks! I’m happy to tell you all that I’ll be releasing a new album later this year, it’ll be my 7th solo record.
The album is called Shapes of the Fall
I’ll be telling you more about it soon, right now I’m still busy finishing up the writing of the new songs but I’ll keep you posted as we head into the studio to record!
Et j’ai le grand plaisir de vous annoncer une belle date parisienne le 16 novembre 2020 au Trianon pour célébrer la sortie de mon septième album en automne prochain, Shapes of the Fall
La billetterie est déjà ouverte: FNAC SPECTACLES
My new music video for “Could have been you” from the new EP Hear My Voice
Directed by the great Jeremiah and myself
Hear my voice Ep is available HERE