"an intriguing yet strange work, and somewhat disturbing"
-- Planet Hugill
Summer 2019 I recorded my phone calls with my parents and wrote music around their voices. The result was a 7 minute piece for string quartet, recorded voices, and field recordings made around my London and Hartlepool homes.
Mixing personal phone calls, real-world sounds and composed music, Be nice to see you is a portrait of nostalgia and family, playing out through the voices of my parents.
Originally intended as a more general look at Hartlepuddlian speech and story-telling, Be Nice To See You gradually became a more personal project as it developed, concentrating just on the phone calls with my parents. Revealing only the parents’ side of the conversation, and fragmenting that speech, the listener is left to concentrate on the creative turns of phrase, and the musicality of the voices as they interact with the instrumental music.
Be nice to see you celebrates the skill and creativity to be found in day-to-day speech, expressing homesickness, and the desire to renew connections with where you’re from.
Solem Quartet Four Quarters out now!·
Solem Quartet's new album is out today. It's fantastic and I'm very glad to be included: my track setting phone calls home is on alongside stuff from Thomas Ades, Cassandra Miller, Purcell, Kate Bush. Happy company. Listen / buy here.
Solem Quartet album out soon·
The Solem Quartet have programmed my Be nice to see you on their debut album, out in a week. The album is structured around Thomas Adès' great The Four Quarters, and I'm up alongside some of my fav composers. Check it out, pre-order here.
Be nice to see you on BBC Radio 6 Music·
'Be nice to see you' out now on the BBC·
New Creatives North commission·
After recording string parts with the Ligeti Quartet earlier this week, and mixing a final draft on Tuesday, I've finished a piece called Ee well for the New Creatives North scheme, incorporating field recordings, new music for string quartet, and a load of illicitly recorded phone conversations with my parents. Online soon.
Listenpony #19, new piece for Ligeti Quartet·
Looking forward to this great lineup - Joseph Havlat, Ligeti Quartet and Ana Silvera! I'll be writing a piece for Ligeti Quartet, and there'll also be music from Freya Waley-Cohen and Josephine Stephenson, and new pieces from Egidija Medekšaitė, Rūta Vitkauskaitė and Joseph Howard. Tickets here.
Listenpony's 2019 is pretty much fully formed: 28 Jan, 29 May, and 26 Sep. We're working with some exciting people this year -- check it out at listenpony.com.