Paul Liddell has become something of an international act. He is currently playing gigs in Germany and Belgium and recently crossed the pond to play in the USA. By all accounts it's going very well. Hardly surprising, given his reputation as a superb live musician and his absolute artistic integrity. I've seen him perform live just once when he supported Matt Cardle in Birmingham. It isn't nearly enough.
Paul has a new single coming out in early September. It's called THE ENDS OF THE EARTH and is his first with new label Regulus. He isn't one for mushy love songs, preferring to take a wry, yet entertaining look at what is happening around him and shine a spotlight on injustice and society's other ills.
When Matt Cardle wrote LOVING YOU, he intended to record it solo. That was before he ran into Melanie Chisholm at this year's Isle of Wight Festival and was struck by the notion that it could be tweaked to make a great duet. Melanie (Mel C. of Spice Girls fame) has duetted successfully before, most notably with Bryan Adams on their 1998 hit When You're Gone. She has a voice that lends itself to harmonies and the collaboration with Matt works extremely well.
I went to see Jason Mraz last month at the O2 Arena when his world tour, whimsically named Tour is a Four Letter Word, hit the UK for its final night. The tour is to support his latest album, Love is a Four Letter Word, which has spawned various other "is a four letter word" themes, including a bonus album, Live is..... and then there's the tree planting scheme, Tree is.... well, you get the idea.
Talented live performer Gabrielle Aplin has released a new single, a cover of the 1984 Frankie Goes to Hollywood number 1 THE POWER OF LOVE. It is the theme tune for the John Lewis advert this Christmas and is doing nicely, currently number 5 in both the Amazon and I-tunes download charts. Production is rather simpler than the original with little more than Gabrielle's beautiful bell-clear voice and a piano played softly. As the festive season approaches, I predict that this will continue to sell well. Lovely, lovely version of a beautiful song.
Live albums can be a bit of an adventure. Some are great, but many don't work, not least because quite a few successful artists should really stick to the studio where there's a super powerful auto tune to edit out all those bum notes. They can be a good way to decide whether or not to pay money out to see an act live. As you listen, ask yourself this: are you making allowances for it being a live set, or are you bopping your socks off to an outstanding performance?
With his new album Matt Cardle has finally come out of his box and become his own man. He has a new recording contract with SoWhat? records that gives him the control he lacked with Columbia/Sony, a new album, "The Fire" and a sound that is totally, unmistakably Cardle. His three date album launch mini tour took place this week, setting venues alight in Birmingham, Brighton and culminating in the launch party at Scala, London. "The Fire" and lead single, "It's Only Love" are out simultaneously on the 29th October 2012. Take my advice and go straight for the album.
BRISTOL TERROR SCRIBES 5/5/2012, a Remembrance
By Sue Phillips
The Terror Scribes have never invaded Bristol before and so the town did not really know what to expect. It decided that the safest option was to keep its head down and pretend that this was just another ordinary day. A casual observer might have been forgiven for thinking that all was as usual. The quiver of fear that ran through the streets went unseen, unfelt... but it was there.
Here's a brief round up of many (not all) things Matt Cardle over the past few months.
So the Letters album went Platinum a while ago and Matt has been touring Britain promoting it. The warm up tour took in the Highlands and Islands, culminating at the legendary Koko. I was there and his voice was as good as I'd ever heard it. He kicked off with a new version of the title track Letters that was half acoustic, half rocking out and it set the mood for the whole show where soaring falsetto interspersed some belting performances. He was thrilled when the audience sang along to what were still new songs, not yet released, and left the stage exclaiming "Thank you Koko. Best night of my life!"
James Walsh has been a busy bee in recent times. It would take a long time to list everything the former Starsailor front man has been up to, but let's look at a few of the more interesting ones before he gets on and does another half dozen.
First he has an EP out and I can recommend giving it a listen. There is also the free track Man on the Hill to download from his website www.jameswalshmusic.com