On Music

Silence

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As a child, I was fascinated by silence. That is not to say the times in which I was quiet were plentiful; quite the opposite in fact – even as a child it was difficult to shut me up, much to the eternal frustration of my mother. Despite a propensity for singing and chatting, at […]

On Being an Indie Fan

Six Songs of Me

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Quite some time ago, early last decade, the Guardian ran a popular segment on their music blog called Six Songs of Me that was always an enjoyable read. Of course what self-respecting record collector wouldn’t want to share their choices and wax lyrical about the songs that shaped them. So here we are.   What […]

Guitar

Monster 25

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1994. I wanted to be a writer. 15 years old. My dad was a football fanzine writer. I decided I could be a writer. Standard Grade English was, if not my best school subject, certainly my favourite. Some bright spark thought the school needed a newspaper, so I joined the team as the music reviewer. […]

On Being an Indie Artist

What’s in a Name?

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Names. They can mean everything or they can mean nothing to the band so titled, or indeed to their audience. They can be serious, political, witty, pithy, nonsensical knowing, ironic, or just ever so simple. Some artists must regret the choice as the weight of their decision dawns on them after the first few years. […]

On Being an Indie Artist

Singing

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“Don’t sing Neil, it sounds terrible”, stressed my mum, as a 12 year old me hollered out the final chorus of R.E.M.’s Everybody Hurts.  “You take after your mother’s side of the family when it comes to singing.  We just can’t.” Ouch! For a wee Scottish boy who, since seeing the Beach Boys in concert […]