New Sounds and Where We’re At

Following the release of the “Life’s A Gift” album in 2015 I wanted to plough on with the next record. I had a bunch of songs that were inspired by and loosely based upon my childhood memories, both vague and lucid. Stories my parents told me, things I remembered, family anecdotes and the music I grew up listening to. I took all these things, embroidered, fleshed them out and used this as the basis for the next Unc’n’Chunk album. So once again we headed for Ranscombe Studios and got to work. As soon as I’d recorded the demos of two Suzi Chunk tracks, ‘Got Up And Gone’ and ‘Find The Morning’, I knew this would make a great (4th) single so we decided to release the first 45 on our own Trouserphonic label and on red vinyl too! The A side features the mighty Groovy Uncle horn section of Paul and Anna Jordanous and John Littlefair while over on the flip side Anna plays the mellow flute arrangement beautifully. We released the single on the 1st September 2016 and you can buy a copy here.

We are now about half way through recording our 6th album (count them!) and ideally I’d like to release it some time next year. However, financial setbacks are such that we may be looking at a later rather than sooner release date and I’m uncertain as to what format we’ll be looking at, though there is a strong possibility it’ll be put out as a download only album. That said, anything could happen in the coming months as all the songs are ready to go and I’m very much looking forward to getting back in the studio at some point. Thanks for your support. See you on the flip side!

One Vowel Away From The Truth

Once we’d seen in the New Year my thoughts immediately turned to making a new record. This would be the third Groovy Uncle album project after “Play Something We Know!”and Suzi Chunk’s “Girl From The Neck Down”. Both had been very well received (particularly the latter) though they are very different from each other and this got me thinking it might be interesting to make the new album a mix of the two – a bona fide Unc’n’Chunk record. I already had the songs written and knew which were Suzi’s and which were mine plus a couple to duet and once again I wanted to include one or two instruments and musicians I hadn’t worked with before. On the track “Consider It Done”for example, jazz musician Roan Kearsey-Lawson did some beautiful vibe playing which became the icing on the (already lovely) cake and he did it in one take! It took much longer to dismantle and reassemble the instrument than it did to mic it up and record but was well worth the effort. Roan also brought along a set of late 19th century tubular bells which added a nice touch to “Human Scaffold”.

A few months ago I demoed a song called “When I Saw Love” (which can be heard on Suzi’s Soundcloud site) and thought it needed handling in a Beatles-esque, “For No-One” style. Jon Barker does some fine harpsichord type keyboard work on it but I knew I had to find a French horn player. Via the magic of Facebook I was put in touch with Neil Mitchell, a classical orchestral player who was more than happy to be involved as this was to be his first solo on a recording. We worked together on the arrangement and his playing is majestic. It gives the song a melancholic yet uplifting quality which no other instrument could have achieved. Joining us once again is John Littlefair providing the horn section on “Must Have” and “It’s Not Like Me”. Always a pleasure to work with Mr L and I love his playing on these tracks. 
A number of songs this time feature the trumpet playing of John Whitaker (he of Stuart Turner and the Flat Earth Society among others) and I think his contributions really lift songs such as “Neptune Girl”, “Me And My Fair Weather Friend” and “Human Scaffold”. I’m particularly pleased former Singing Loins mandolin player Rob Shepherd agreed to work out a part for “November”. I’ve always been a big fan of the Loins and I like what he does here as it takes the GU sound to another place entirely. Peter White joins us again for some nifty keyboard work on “The Money Shot”.

,Of course Bruce Brand, Nick Rice, Mole, Marty Ratcliffe, Suzi Chunk and myself contributed a fair amount to the project too but more about that and other stuff later. The album is called “One Vowel Away From The Truth”  and we’ll be mixing it next month (July). Thanks to all involved.

A Thank You

After all the tremendous response to the album “Girl From The Neck Down” I thought it about time I composed an open letter to say a big thank you to everyone who has supported us over the past 12 months and beyond and to all involved in the project. Everyone involved was totally committed to the project from start to finish and there is no way I could have done it without you. My apologies in advance for any glaring ommissions. So, in no particular order….

Suzi Chunk, Bruce Brand, Marty Ratcliffe, Mole Lambert, Nick Rice, Allan Crockford, Ben Jones, Jon Barker, Phil Brown, Peter White, John Littlefair, Paul Moss, Ian Snowball, Jon Abnett, Peter Salmon, Paddy Faulkner, Lois Tozer, Jane Prangnell, Arthole Retrographics, Graham Seamark, Graham Sage, Mike Murray, Bill Kelly, Mark Radcliffe, Stuart Maconie, Lizzie Hoskin, SiriusXM, Stevie Van Zandt, Andrew Loog Oldham, Drew Carey, Kid Leo, Mighty Manfred, Genya Ravan, Jenna Antonacci, “Shindig!” magazine, Medway Eyes, Fizzer’s Radio Show, WOW Medway, Medway Broadside, Jennie and Colin Baillie, David Bash, Phil Moore, “Record Collector” magazine, Terry Lane @ Buzzin’ Media, Hard Rock Memorabilia, Rosemary Edwards, Jason Charles Rogers, Phil Dillon, James Crowther, Kev Wright @ The Sound Of Confusion, Andy Morten, State Records.

To everyone who has bought, downloaded, voted, championed and generally said nice things WE THANK YOU! Have a wonderful, happy, positive 2013. We intend to bring you much more in the coming year!  

Glenn