Updated: Oct 31, 2022
How are ye getting on?
Catastrophe Hits is one year old today. That's right, they grow up so fast, I know. Promoting it has taken in one lockdown, two radio sessions, four tours through five countries, five singles, and a cast of nine incredible musicians (and wonderful folk) lending their talents to the songs over the course of twelve months. It's been emotional. It was the first record that I've written songs on that's charted too, which is mental. It has been such a pleasure to be able to get out and tour it (almost) properly. It has been so wonderful to see all of you at shows too. To have that connection again. Big up Olive Grove Records and Last Night From Glasgow for punting it into the world.
Anyway, before I get too misty-eyed, and to ✨celebrate✨, if you've yet to get your hands on a copy of the album, you can get one from my webshop with 25% off for the next week (until 7 Nov) if you enter the code CATASTROPHE at checkout. Treat yourself here. It's well guid. Award winning, no less.
Since my last blog, Charlotte "Big Red" Printer and I have started a podcast for Glad Radio called Still Doing The Music, Aye? in which we interview folk from the world of music about the challenges facing them in an absolutely shagged industry. It's not all doom and gloom though. It's fulla laughs.
Three episodes have been released so far, featuring interviews with bona fide legends Jill O'Sullivan, Audrey Tait, and Amandah Wilkinson. Get it on Glad Radio or like/subscribe wherever you normally get your podcasts.
I'm not long back from a whistle-stop tour of the Island of Ireland doing some duo shows with Linzi Clark.
Our first night was at the excellent Subterranean Sounds in Waterford. I know I've said it before, but as an independent artist there are few things greater than DIY promoters who have an engaged audience who trust them. Gary and Patrick are sound lads indeed, and everything about the show gave me cause to believe it would be excellent. Soundcheck gets off to a slightly less than optimal start with the smell of an electrical fire, the source of which seems alarmingly like the guitar amp. Amp swapped and soundcheck done, we're treated very kindly by the good folk at Luca Records and Momo restaurant and have a lovely wander round Waterford.
Phil Grimes is a smashing venue and it's refreshing to be able to verbally express myself in between songs in a way I couldn't here, after the past month and a half. I think fondly of how the manny who replied "it's fuckin excellent" to my question of "what's it like to watch the island next door tear itself to bits?" must be enjoying the relentless UK news cycle since the gig.
The show is excellent fun and everyone is absolutely lovely.
We head to Kilkenny the next morning and towards an instore at the happiest little record shop in the world, Rollercoaster Records. We set up and I realise I've no plectrums and head back to the car to grab them only to find a rather stressed, heavily pregnant woman leaving a very, very apologetic note and her number on my windscreen for scraping my wheel arch. It's not the best way to prep for a performance, let me tell you. All I can think of to say is to thank her for the details and "ah well, you're driving for two". I remember that I'm promoting a brand new single and play it on a borrowed telecaster that won't comply with my alternative tuning. You should check out Paul Savage's Savage Cut of So Long! (I'm Not Around) here. You should also visit Rollercoaster if you're ever in Kilkenny. You probably have if have you have been, if you know what I mean. It's class.
We're straight in the newly-modified motor and high-tail it northwards and to Warrenpoint and our evening show with The New Leaves. It's a pleasure all round and again it's lovely just have another audience in close quarters to chat with and play stripped back versions of my tunes.
I sold the last copy of the eponymous first Broken Chanter record on vinyl at this show. I'll try and find some more, but I think that's them away. Which is nice. We go for a chips afterwards somewhere that apparently had The Worst Toilet In Ireland. Luckily I'd had my scran before I received the report.
A flying visit but a thoroughly enjoyable and worthwhile one.
Next up, I'm doing a wee solo outing celebrating the launch of Linzi Clark's debut album on gorgeous vinyl on Olive Grove Records. It's on Saturday 5th November at the Old Hairdressers in Glasgow and it's going to be a lovely evening indeed. Pre-order the very limited vinyl here and get yourself a ticket for the show here. I've done a lot of shows with linzi over the past year and i’ve had the pleasure of getting to know this LP well. It's a proper delight full of humour, sadness, and incredible pop songcraft. Get one, you'll no regret it.
I'm delighted to say that I'll be performing at next year's Celtic Connections Festival at The Hug and Pint in Glasgow on 31 January 2023. This will be a ✨full band✨ show and my first in the city for almost a year. You should get your tickets while you can, here.
I'll be heading out to do some duo shows in February with Linzi, too. Get yourself a ticket for one of the below here.
21 Feb MONTROSE - Montrose Folk Club @ Montrose Playhouse
23 Feb GALASHIELS - New Word Order @ MacArts
24 Feb NEWPORT-ON-TAY - Rio Community Centre w/ Linzi Clark & Adam Ross (Randolph's Leap)
25 Feb COATBRIDGE - The Listening Room @ The Georgian Hotel
Right, that's plenty. Hope you're doing very well indeed.