It all started off when I used to write songs in my head when I was a child although my musical taste back then was variable. I had Tears for Fears, The Monkees and Musical Youth as my main influences so the results thankfully never left the confines of my over-active imagination.
I started to learn the guitar when I was 14 and as you do at that age, started a band before I was anywhere near proficient. We kept going for just under 3 years before we all went our separate ways, all going on (obviously) to bigger and better things. For instance, the drummer can now be seen in the Money Shop adverts promoting pay-day loans with extortionate interest rates.
A spell in Cambridge followed and the short-lived experimental ‘live-tronica’ duo ‘Grey’ temporarily ruled the roost (for one night only in a dingy cellar bar). As I recall, It seemed to go pretty well although we did have to play all our songs twice to fill up our allotted time. Luckily we were playing to inebriated students so no one noticed. – I’ve actually just noticed that this very website is very ‘grey’.. This is purely a coincidence.
Soon I was off to the Big Smoke which signalled the start of the Dark Mink Years. ‘The Mink’ were a collective of musicians who formed and played in many guises. With Deletia, we released an EP called Thinking Dogs for the Stupid which received some nice press, a ‘Single of the Week’ in Scotland’s The Guide magazine and a play on the radio from the Legendary John Peel (which if I’m honest, is all I’ve ever wanted to achieve).
I was also in the Mink Troubadour Kamikaze Squadron. Our novelty song ‘Underpants’ was probably our best known composition. This was released on the Blang Label Compilation. It received 100% negative reviews from the critics, caused a child to turn feral in Devon and also got played on Radio 1 by Huw Stephens.
At this time we were also running The Smelly Ball with our friends Flipron. The Smelly Ball was a kind of musical variety show featuring our favourite bands, wedding DJs, the original Smelly Ball Raffle©, improvised theatre and normally one special celebrity guest each month (Bill Oddie, Brian May, Slash, Steve Tyler, King Charles I and some bloke who once appeared in The Office – to name a few). It was called The Smelly Ball due to the first venue being in a pub cellar right by the River Thames in the height of summer so we were forced to hang joss-sticks around the venue to try and eliminate the smell of overflowing sewers.
The short-lived, harmony-centric Evil Speakers followed. Although we never really released anything, people did say some nice things about us (once) and we did get played on XFM but this was after we had already called a halt to the band, which was a bit odd.
For the last few years I’ve been playing guitar for prog-folk-post-skiffle aficionados Satan’s Cock. We are known for our energetic performances and also for our extensive knowledge of all types of food Condiments and chutney.
This brings me pretty much up to date except I haven’t mentioned Untitled Fruit Company. Well, if I have to sum it up in one sentence; It’s me faffing about with a load of musical instruments, samplers and laptops in my spare room.
The actual Concept was to use all the samples, sequences and part-songs I’ve written over the last few years and finally create finished pieces of music from them. The songs themselves had to be short, simple and based on loops and simple riffs rather than the complicated chord sequences and time signatures that I’ve been obsessed with in the past. I’ve finished two collections of songs which are now available to download and have contributed music to the PS Vista game ‘Frobisher Says’ and PS4 game ‘Super Exploding Zoo’. I plan to complete a few more songs and sound-scapes before my creative well completely dries up which could be any day soon.