Introducing the Versatility Serenaders!

I can’t tell you how excited I am about this. The 1910s were a fascinating and rich time of cultural flux, chock-full of many different musical trends, and finally, here’s a band that tries to incorporate them all! Well, I can go on about it, but I’ll give a digest of our gig in July, right here:

Normally we wouldn’t be using microphones, but this engagement was in a place with zero acoustic, and a lot of liquored-up young hooligans, though bless em, I haven’t a word to say against someone who chooses to drink cocktails at a place that presents 1910s pop songs.

For more on this marvellous band, I refer you to its founder’s website. Click HERE.

In other news, I’m doing a CD of Early Music! With these fine fellows here:
Lovekyn II smaller
There are many tremendously worthy CDs of Renaissance music that seek to illustrate a historical point, or fill out a previously-unheard corner of music, but we’re just making something that is fun, has contrasting songs, and sounds good. To sell at gigs! Quite a few Campion pieces, because I love Campion. Almost everything will be Elizabethan. Lute, various wooden flutes and a very interesting-looking guitar (a replica of one that sits in a museum) will feature.

I’ll supply details of this as it comes, but we shall (touch wood) be recording on the 27th of this month.

I have to note here for anyone wanting to come to the gig at Stoke Newington on the 20th (two days’ time). That gig is cancelled. It appears that the venue wanted some (a fairly large amount of) money in case not enough people came! We didn’t know that! So it is cancelled.

But you can see us on YouTube!

I’ll be on BBC Four TV this Friday, making a wax cylinder! It was a real test for me; I’d grown up listening to cylinders and 78s in my parents’ collection, and always thought that if a modern singer did one, modern stylistic tics would give the game away despite the lo-fi sound. In the end, it was quite spooky, the nearest thing to time-travel I’m likely to experience.

Here’s a CLIP.

In any case, watch the series! 9pm, and naturally on iPlayer. Neil Brand is a tremendously engaging host. And a truly funny, very nice man, too. FINALFINAL_SOS TX card

In the meantime, I’m sure my mum will want me to remind people that I also do a mean Petite Messe Solennelle, and a very good Mozart Requiem, but I’d like to say that I don’t just do 1910s music. Heck, I can do 1940s. Here is evidence. Matt is wearing a genuine Demob suit, too.

Also something I wish to prove in my next album (after the WW1 album which has finally been mixed, and will be released early March!), which is that there was a different style to microphone crooning, a halfway-house of smooth, yet unamplified, singing. Very prevalent in hotel lobbies, even nightclubs. I’ve now spoken to enough 90-year-olds who used to sing in such places to know that microphones were by no means taken for granted!

Aaaaand, if anyone is in the Vancouver area, I’ll be doing a concert of 1940s and 1950s songs, unamplified, and in some nice frocks! Very appropriately, as it will be in the frock-tastic Museum of Vancouver!

A Remarkably Good™ website.