I was recently invited to perform at the opening of a Museum exhibition. Now, having been in the Music business professionally for nearly 35 years, this might be something I could take offence at! But, this is no ordinary exhibition. It is The Rams Collection. Curated by Andy Ellis, author of several Derby County books and a lifelong Rams fan, it is an extraordinary hoard of Derby County Football Club memorabilia that reaches back into the 19th. Century and takes your breath away, particularly, if, like me, you have supported The Rams all your life. Collections like this are fascinating. It is not always the ‘grand pieces’ that draw the gasps, it can be the discarded golden goal ticket, one of so many thousands that lay strewn across the terraces following a match. It evokes a memory, a passion from the past, perhaps something that provokes conversation between Father and Son, as the younger generation finally gain an insight into what it was like to support the club in yesteryear. During discussions about this exhibition which I sat in on with Andy and Peter Bonnell, Curator of The Quad, I saw some amazing stuff! -But i won’t spoil the surprise, come along to opening night and see for yourselves!
It was C. V. Wedgwood who said: ‘Without passion there might be no errors, but without passion there would certainly be no history‘. – Well, there’s no passion like that of a football fan, and DCFC’s history will be on display at The QUAD, Derby for all to see for 3 months during the summer. I’ll be taking a small band to open the exhibition performing tracks from my DCFC CD “Fan Fayre for the Commons People” live for the first time, comprising Mike Koch my musical cohort from B.C.Sweet and Witch Cross on guitar, my lifelong mate Stef Cybichowski (After the Fire, and soon to be BCS!) on Drums and special guest Tom Leary (Lindisfarne/feast of Fiddles/Clem Clempson) on fiddle. Derby County Club Captain Shaun Barker will be doing a DJ set to follow.
For our part, while I’m over from Spain, we’re hoping to turn it into a fun little ‘micro-tour’. – On Saturday June 7th, Me, Mike and Stef under the name of ‘Straight Shooters’ will be performing an exclusive set of Bad Company and Free numbers at the Uxbridge Arms in nearby Burton -on – Trent, and we’re looking at a venue to host us on the Friday night too. to complete a hat-trick, if you will!
Occasionally, my passions collide. Take Music and Football. They collided spectacularly when Nigel Clough took over at Derby County FC, inspiring me to create ( with a few fans’ help) a whole CD of songs dedicated to the Mighty Rams. The Fan Fayre for the Commons People album was hard work, but a labour of love.
But the weekend saw The Rams, via the unquestionable generosity of my partner, French Artist and fellow ‘Ramatic’, Miki, reward me for my efforts. As we prepared to listen to the commentary for the Derby v Portsmouth game on Saturday, I was ‘window shopping’ for a new fretless bass for the studio, studying one in particular with some intensity and incredibly kindly, if a little recklessly, she said: “If we win, I’ll buy you that bass.”
Now, anybody familiar with DCFC will know that listening to, or watching their games is a nervy affair at best – though our fabulous start to the season has tempered the fear somewhat – but to add into the mix the chance of winning or losing an instrument??? aaaaargh!!!!!
Anyway, to Miki’s bemusement and my delight, The Rams demolished Pompey in the first half, and ran out comfortable winners at 3-1.
So, thanks lads, for a great win, and a brand new fretless Wishbass!
THE RAMS ROCK!
The Musos among you can check out more of Steve Wishnevsky’s amazing instruments HERE.
This week I’m trying to do some more preparatory work on my next solo album, whilst also being “on call” for Mike from BC Sweet who is putting the finishing touches to one of our new tracks. I’m in the “workmanlike” stage of my project, where I’m detailing every dodgy piano note, repairing bits here and there and generally trying to knock into shape ideas that are not yet complete songs. It doesn’t feel particularly creative, but it’s a necessary part of the process. Once I’m back in the swing of things it should move along nicely, but the sunshine has a way of luring you away from the studio!
I’ve also been distracted by my football team’s (Derby County) legendary victory over our bitterest rivals (Nottingham Forest) and felt compelled to record a version of “Wish you were Here” to commemorate it! You can download it here:
We’ve been quite busy with BC Sweet too, involving a lot of travelling, so that’s kept me away from the studio at times. Still, I have time to get cracking on my usual stuff, as my next show with BC Sweet isn’t until mid October.
Don’t forget music-lovers, I have a host of product out there: including 2 full albums as digital downloads, “The Long Walk Home” and “The Songwriter Diaries” COMPLETELY FREE! Plus, available to buy from Shop:Kev, My DCFC tribute CD “Fan Fayre for the Commons People”, and my latest CD, the 18 track “Blue Odyssey”.
Click on the picture links to explore, listen, download and buy!
A week or so ago, I went to see my beloved Derby County play Barnsley at Pride Park stadium with my Dad. Now, whilst I’ve been to Pride park before – even sang there – it was the first time we’d sat together for a match since the heady days of the early 70’s, witnessing the magic that Brian Clough and Peter Taylor brought to the club. The venue was different then, of course – not a shiny modern stadium, but the intimacy of the old Baseball Ground, almost on top of the treacherous pitch, daunting for the opposition.
To sit with Dad again felt like completing the circle. After all, Brian’s sons appointment as Manager and my football education through my Father prompted me to write “Derby Pride”. Fast forward several years since that song and Nigel’s appointment, and we’ve witnessed everything- hard times, spectacular falls from grace, a shining period of sublime total football, followed swiftly by total collapse. The phrase “no-one said it was going to be easy” hardly seems to cover it. If we didn’t know it before, we know now – Nigel Clough has a long hard road ahead. Watching the game with Dad, I saw some reasons to be optimistic. We kept a clean sheet, loanee Jamie Ward looked an industrious lad, but we were making too many unforced errors, almost beating oursleves, as it were. Nevertheless, at the time of writing, we’d managed to grind out a massively important win this weekend against high-flying Swansea. This club will rise again, but it will take longer than some can stomach. But then, supporting Derby County was never for the faint-hearted.
What it is for though, is Fathers and Sons.*
* View/12YO – AND daughters!! 😉
For those of you who didn’t get a chance to hear my interview on the BBC iplayer, I’ve made it available here permanently, with the addition of a couple of extra song samples: The Co-Op Cow from Fan Fayre for the Commons People, and 96 on Sixth from Blue Odyssey.
It has a run time of just under 25 minutes and in addition to my interview with Colin Bloomfield and the above-mentioned tracks, also features snippets from Derby Pride, Who Dat?! and Commons People.
Thursday’s Sport at 6 on BBC Radio Derby hosted by Colin Bloomfield saw me interviewed at length about Blue Odyssey, Fan Fayre for the Commons people, The Mighty Rams and my trip across America earlier in the year. If you missed it, you can catch up via the BBC iplayer:
Call it the spirit of the season, call it whatever you like, but here at Moore music towers, we’ve decided to make a special Christmas offer to all Rams Fans, in honour of the release of my new album and the resurgence of DCFC, and Mr. Common’s goalscoring prowess.
Yes, if you buy my new CD Blue Odyssey, you will be able to purchase my DCFC album Fan Fayre for the Commons People for just 5 Euros! This offer only lasts until Christmas, so get busy! If you’ve already got a copy, this is a great opportunity to buy one for a loved one, or even your wife!
(N.B. This offer does not apply to the Limited “Red Dog” edition)
Just go to MIKISMART, order in the Blue Odyssey CD + Fan Fayre CD window (where the Mikismart link takes you)
UP THE RAMS!
In addition to my musical pursuits, I’ve recently got back into art, and now you can choose from a selection of prints, and even T-shirts, from some of my recent creations in our shop, MIKISMART.
You’ll also find there an extensive selection of my partner Miki’s paintings for sale, both as originals and prints, not to mention my Derby County CD, “Fan Fayre for the Commons People”.
My new album Blue Odyssey, released next month, will also be available from MIKISMART on mail order, as a 6 panel digipak presentation, featuring 18 original songs.
Advanced orders of the new CD will receive a free download of my song “The Turre Stomp”.