Friday 14 July 2017

Givers & Takers hits the iTunes blues chart at number six. Click the image to check it out 🙂

SINGLE release day! Givers & Takers is now available. Get it here.

I’m up at a decent time to add a landing page to the website, post Facebook profile and page banners and a bunch of other social media stuff to spread the word…and, of course, an iTunes link.

Once that’s all done I set up for a Facebook livestrream and although the broadband connection is slow, at least it doesn’t completely drop off meaning the livestream goes relatively smoothly..although as you’ll see from the ‘play again’ video below, there’s still a few glitches…

There’s poster art and tickets to be sorted for a newly booked Aberdeen show at the Blue Lamp on Friday 15 September – tickets available here.

A big box of old photos I pulled down from the loft has been hanging about the office for a while and for some reason I decide to tackle the job of scanning them….a few hours later…

A quick look at Apple Music shows that Givers & Takers has gone into the Apple Music/iTunes blues charts at number six! This morning’s work has paid off 🙂

That’s one position higher than last year’s Hellbound Train EP which debuted at number seven and had the benefit of a load of PR, promo and a month’s worth of pre-orders…


Sunday 12 March 2017

AFTER breakfast I work on a web development and photography proposal out of a meeting last week.

Once done, I’m back onto the tracks from the live album. Getting the various playlists from iTunes onto my new phone is a bit of a carry on until I work out that, if you use Apple Music, it’s necessary to switch off iCloud music on the phone/device. Then you can manually choose playlists to sync – once done, back into the phone/device settings to re-enable iCloud music. What a fanny dance! And the process ain’t documented anywhere,

In the studio I do a quick video edit of one of the songs that hasn’t made the cut for the album, Stagolee. Nothing wrong with it – we just have to be ruthless with the track selection. The video footage from Urbancroft is looking good and the resulting video is pretty sweet….uploaded, but not shared for the moment. You’ll have to wait for that 😉

I take a walk and use the break to listen through the track mixes and proposed running order. We need to have that decided and all the metadata (ISRC codes and other release info) off in advance of tomorrow’s mastering session at Chem19.

We take a wander along to see Betty and Joe then home to make dinner and tie up a few loose ends work-wise. Been a pretty hectic weekend.

Friday 10 June 2016

The Hellbound Train EP goes into the iTunes blues charts at number seven. Hell yeah!

The Hellbound Train EP goes into the iTunes blues charts at number seven. Hell yeah!

WELL…EP release day, video premiere day…and a show in Edinburgh tonight that needs last minute promo.

So you can imagine my annoyance when the hotel wifi decides to go on a go-slow. Just gotta bash on though and somehow we manage everything….first I deal with the new release.

Then liaising with The Blues Magazine for the online premiere of the Hellbound Train video and co-ordinating it with my Facebook page, we get that all going before moving onto some last minute promo for tonight’s (Friday) show at Sneaky pete’s in Edinburgh.

We get checked out the hotel and leave Aberdeen behind. When we stop for a coffee I do some online stuff and, on checking out iTunes see that Hellbound Train has entered the iTunes blues chart at number seven. Result! It’ll probably only be there for a day, but it’s up there in the top ten with some big names 🙂

Arriving in Edinburgh, we drop our bags off at Lesley’s, pick up ticket money at Ripping Records then load in at Sneaky Pete’s.

There’s a good crowd in when Lee opens the show at 7.30pm and by the time I kick off my set the place is pretty full. A great crowd.

I have a real blast playing and after two encores manage to get off the stage. Covered in sweat, whisky and buzzing from everyone’s enthusiasm. Great to catch up with pals old and new too.

Back at Lesley’s we eat, drink and chat til after 2am then….zzzzzzzzzz….

An amazing night at Sneaky Pete's :-)

An amazing night at Sneaky Pete’s 🙂


Thursday 24 March 2016

The spinach pasta turns out good...pretty green!

The spinach pasta turns out good…pretty green!

NEED to bite the bullet today and get everything prepared for the Hellbound Train EP release (10 June).

First job is to get everything registered with PRS/MCPS and PPL. I already registered Good Moonshine (aka I Went to America) and Travellin’ Man as these have been part of my live show recently.

Checking them out before I add Hellbound Train and Pearline, though, I see that I Went to America – the ‘otherwise known as’/other title – has a publisher’s name beside it. I assigned a bunch of instrumentals and a few songs to them, but this ain’t one of them! I call my pal Duncan at MCPS for advice and he recommends I amend the share splits and it should sort itself out.

Once done with the PRS/MCPS registrations I move onto PPL (Phonographic Performance Limited) which collects and distributes the record company/recording owner’s royalties as well as the performers’ royalties. All yours truly in this case as I am the label,publisher, writer and performer of all parts…other than drums on Hellbound Train which come courtesy of Paul Savage (Delgados).

Once all that’s done I upload the master audio files to my aggregator (the modern equivalent of a distributor) along with all the metadata – basically info on the song, writer, IRSC (International Standard Recording Code) codes and other stuff to make sure the tracks are identifiable in the wider world and royalties etc (hopefully) all go in the right direction.

Time for a break, so I make some pork gyoza for lunch and put together some spinach pasta dough for tonight’s dinner.

While cover art was finished yesterday, I need to pull together a digital booklet to include with iTunes downloads…adds a little value and is an incentive for folks to download the full EP rather than just a few tracks. iTunes has very strict guidelines/criteria for digital booklets.

Sometime after 8pm I’m ready for a beer and finish up for the day. Almost there with the EP prep – just a coupe of pages to finalise in the iTunes booklet which I’ll upload tomorrow. That’ll give me 11 weeks to get a good lead in to iTunes and the other download/streaming services and the PR can start next week. Still need to decide if any physical promo is needed or we can do it all online…

I rustle up a tomato sugo with chicken and the spinach pasta turns out good….