Top 5 of 2011
1) Upside Down
So I started putting together the new band, ‘Secrets for September’ though I put the plan in place in 2009, this year I got it all together, Gumtree and lemonrock found Dave and Marina (As I had Mike on board in a preliminary way) and the first track that we got together was Upside Down. And with a bit of Roger’s Moog magic chucked in for good measure this was almost as perfect track as I could have ever been involved it. They say the proof in the pudding is the eating, well in music its more in the how many wish to put their money where there mouth is, and though you could and still can listen to the track for free on the bands web sites, myspace, soundcloud etc we still managed to sell enough downloads to get to No 2 in the Amazon rock chart and No 1 in the ‘Hot New Releases in Rock’ on Amazon. This was completely overwhelming to me having never seen such a reaction to something new so quickly. By far my proudest musical achievement in my 20 year career.
Secrets For September - Upside Down
2) Arthur Brown
On the 12th may, Arthur Brown visited to drop off some tapes for me to look after and transfer, it just so happened on that night I was also down to play a solo gig at the Picturehouse, Arthur came along as we met at the venue before travelling to my place after, and while we were there we decided to do a couple numbers, we went through the arrangements that evening, then after my set we did 2 Numbers, Devils Grip and That’s How Strong My Love it. It was a pretty faultless performance, and to play with my favourite singer of all time whom happens to be one of my best friends in front of many of the closest people to me was just a perfect moment.
3) The Wall
Anyone that knows me knows my love of everything to do with Pink Floyd, The Wall has been a major part of my life for the last 30 years, I have listened to pretty much every bootleg of the floyd’s 30 odd shows many times, and know the lp backwards, so to witness the show, for the first time stood on the barrier at the very front was just stunning. Amazing show, a million times better than I could ever describe. This added to it being in Dublin making it our big holiday of the year was really fab. First time me and Lee-Anne had ever been on an aeroplane together.
This year saw 2 of my friends both re join the bands that made them both huge names in music, the first was Roger re joining the Cure, I kind of sussed it was going to happen a few months prior, but by the time that Bestival came about it was almost common knowledge that he was back for good. So to be invited to go to the gig to be part of the atmosphere and to stuff Pizza on Robert was just an immense thing. The band were on amazing form, this is amplified by the CD that was just released of that top gig. The Cure are in a great place right now.
5) The Mission
Ditto the above, seeing Simon back in his job was great too, The mission were a massive influence on what I did for a number of years, some gigs they did were stunning, but some were pretty awful too, Bristol and London were different, something I’d never witnessed was the original line up, it was much more raw that the more polished later era of the band, being that Brixton was Martins 50th Birthday meant that we had to pull the stops out, we nearly never went but in the end all came good and we had a great time.
I experienced so many other great things in 2011 Secrets for September in everything I have done stands head and shoulders above it all what will 2012 bring ? well who knows, I will give my old Goth band All living Fear one more blast for its 20th Anniversary but more importantly focus on Secrets.