Monday, October 22, 2007

The Ballad of Chris de Burgh.

The third Songs from The Blue House album, Tree, is now out and unleashed, free to wend it's wandering way wherever it may go. A couple of review copies have already wended their way onto Amazon for instance, which is not bad for something which is officially not released until November. Sadly, the budget didn't extend to flying reviewers in to The Blue House, playing it to them once under laboratory conditions and then escorting them out under cover of darkness bound by a secrecy clause and besides, James hasn't dusted in there for ages. With it's posting to reviewers comes the inevitable wait to see what they all thought, and so far we're doing quite well - batting a steady seven out of ten average with a couple of very kind remarks which we'll doubtless cut & paste into ads and flyers in the hope of enticing people into our fold. With reviews though, you either take them all at face value or none of them - you can't be picking and choosing the ones you want just because someone has ventured an opinion you don't agree with, after all we did ask them in the first place. An uncomfortable situation has arisen, however, with regard to one of the songs "In MyArms" which I'm responsible for and which we regularly introduce live as being our attempt to be the first forty year-old boy band. It was originally recorded for what I like to refer to as my "solo album" and which several other people have referred to as "a bunch of demos" - entitled 'This Much Talent', I did it at home with Gibbon on bass, keyboards and drum machine wrangling, and originally featuring a faux-naif twelve string solo by Wendell Gee as well as a three part harmony climax (giving plenty of room for the good-looking one who can't sing to stand at the back looking wistful, should any real forty year old boy bands chance upon it and put it on the soundtrack to a major movie, which wasn't the original intent, but would certainly go a long way to helping with the overdraft should it come to pass and, as we all know, all things must pass). Our reworked version has prompted two seperate comments so far that it is "A bit Lady In Red". This I find worrying, on so many levels. We've tried to hick a couple of things up a bit on the album, and we've included a few in-jokes for the musicological literati to spot, but this one really passed us by. The really disturbing part is that, having had a listen back, they may have a point. It's an instructive lesson in how perception varies between people and now I'm concerned. Not so much about the songs on this album, it's more the one I had lined up for the next one about a spaceman who goes travelling, gets on a boat for which the ferryman is demanding payment before he reaches his destination (on the other side, as it were) and then sleeps with his children's Nanny. We might have to work on the arrangement for that one.

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