Welcome back Autumn

And so it is on this grey and dreary day that we welcome back our wandering friend Autumn, with a wan smile and a misty ‘hello’. We bid adieu to the green leaves,  blue skies and sun-stroked picnics of August as we stoke the fire, dust off the stripey scarf and hurry to a warm embrace. Pray we to the glacial god of winter for a white blanket on Christmas, not a blizzardy burial.

What better a way to celebrate today than with a themed album release! Earlier in the year, I worked with composer Louis Mander on this set of original compositions and arrangements, largely inspired by the English folk tradition and, of course, this beautiful country in autumn. It was also the first opportunity I had to bring my new instrument, the ‘Sympolin’, to the outside world. This very special violin, commissioned by me and designed by David Bruce Johnson, is based on the Hardanger fiddle of Norway and the viola d’amore: whilst it plays like a modern violin, it also has 8 sympathetic strings which give it a ghostly, glassy sound.

So, without further ado, please allow me to present to you ‘Autumn Twilight’ (also available in the Discography section):

On the jazz side of life (always look on the jazz side of life), I was very privileged to be invited to play with Tobie Carpenter‘s group ‘The Lobbus’ last week, featuring the incredible emerging talents of Chris Young, Nadim Teimoori, Lluis Mather and Hamish Livingstone. Here’s a little snippet from the beginning of the gig:

September Rain

Let us today be joyful for the abundant gift of water that pours down upon the Megalopolis of London. Let us not complain about the rain that so many would readily give everything for. Happy September!

I’ve been away in the Styx (also known as the Black Forest) which is a stunning place. I thoroughly recommend you be brave and head in a Bavarian direction. Get on your dirndl and sally on over. Back here in England-land, there have been a couple of exciting releases which I’d like to share with you kind folks.

My good friends AZEDIA recently released a live video of their song ‘Something’, which I was very privileged to be involved in. Take a peak here:

Slightly further along the musical spectrum, we find the very talented Miss Lucy Claire, a London-based composer, releasing a new EP on which I did a little fiddling. ‘Suite’ is a gentle fusion of electronica and classical music, creating a powerful, ethereal atmosphere and a thoroughly engrossing listen. Check out the new EP here.

On a sour final note, my stolen electric violin and bows are still out there. Stay vigilant. Please.