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(Message started by: Pete Atkin on Today at 10:11)

Title: New CD
Post by Pete Atkin on Today at 10:11
Just to report that I have really and truly and actually made a serious and significant start on recording for a new collection of stuff.   Several days of preparatory sessions with that nice Mr Wallace, setting keys, tempos, rhythms, etc., paid off in not having to sort those things out on the day, wasting the musicians' expensive time, so we got a lot done in a full day.  What's left to do now begins to become much clearer.  

Yesterday's combo for core tracks was Ian Thomas (drums), Steve Pearce (bass), and Simon Wallace (piano).   Plenty of muscle and energy, and loads of musical felicities all over the place (not to be confused with the Musical Felicities who'll be coming in later for BVs).  

One for the collectors among you: it turns out that Ian and Steve were both in the house band for Clive's last TV chat shows.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Ian Chippett on Today at 15:25
Great news. When you say, "a new collection of songs" does that mean "a new collection of old songs" like the Midnight Vopices CD or "a collection of new songs" like "Winter Spring?" If the latter, are they new songs as in songs written since "Winter Spring?" I'll buy it anyway but it would be nice to know. Will there be other musicians on the album apart from those mentioned?

Ian C.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Sylfest on Today at 19:41
Fantastic news, Pete!
Godspeed - make sure y'all get plenty of exercise and sleep and nail it good!

Er, shouldn't you be tweeting that kind of update?

Title: Re: New CD
Post by hannibalmcnee on Today at 20:49
Wonderful news.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Pete Atkin on 07.11.13 at 00:04
Hello Ian (and everyone) - No, it's not Songbook Vol.2.  It'll be mostly post-Winter Spring songs.  Most of them have had at least an outing or two at various gigs, so few will be completely new to absolutely everybody, and I may end up including one or two that have been missed out along the way over the years, but essentially it'll be a new CD.  I haven't yet decided on the final list.

And yesterday was just the first session.  There'll be at least another for basic rhythm tracks.  And yes, there will be other instruments added, not least electric guitar(s), plus self here and there.  Not to rule out other possibilities (horns, voices, who knows?), depending on what turns out to seem desirable. Oh yes, and budget.

And yes, Sylfest, I suppose I may get around to tweeting, but then again I may not.  I'm not yet convinced.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Mike Walters on 07.11.13 at 15:42
Terrific news. Both versions of 'Here We Stay'...?

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Pete Atkin on 08.11.13 at 09:45
Yup, core tracks down for both versions.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Mike Walters on 08.11.13 at 12:11
Even terrificer news. I have a marginal preference for the 'Wagging the Dog' version but love both and the contrast is fascinating.  And singing/playing it myself (badly) recently made me realise what a remarkable lyric it is, too.  

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Sylfest on 09.11.13 at 11:26
Callooh! Callay!

Title: Re: New CD
Post by phil_smith on 09.11.13 at 22:53
Wonderful. Hope if you add horns, they might include the lovely Mr Alan Barnes. And, on a separate note, finally got to see Coope, Boyes and Simpson last week [at The Trades, Hebden Bridge]. What a fine act. And their interpretation of "AHOLS" remains devastating, and a tribute to both of you, Pete and Clive.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Ian Ashleigh on 10.11.13 at 10:42
A new CD of previously unrecorded songs, as I said so eloquently in one word on Facebook - Exciting!!

Title: Re: New CD
Post by avner greenberg on 11.12.13 at 20:39
< Iím off to London this Thursday for another whole dayís recording when Iím expecting to complete the remainder of the core tracks>

Wishing you a most enjoyable and productive day Pete.
This is fantastic news!

Avner

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Pete Atkin on 11.03.14 at 19:19
Just a small update -- nine or ten of the tracks feature lead guitar from ... wait for it ... the legendary Chris Spedding, who has lost absolutely none of his abilities in all directions.   He even uses the SAME Fender amp which he used forty years ago - and not because he can't afford a new one.  He's back now living in Brighton having spent twenty nine of the intervening years as a session man in Los Angeles, and you don't do that by mucking about.

I'm currently working on horn arrangements plus charts for the female BVs.   Still some vocals for me to work on, but we're pretty well on course to have it all done by Easter or thereabouts for an official release in September.

I'm planning to give it as much of a PR push as I can afford, which will also mean raising my presence on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc., so watch out.   I'm also doing my best to generate as decent a gig list as I can, which means contacting venues myself rather than waiting for them to approach me, so if there's anywhere you know of where you think I might reasonably hope for a booking, do please let me know (an IM is probably the easiest way).

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Andrew_Wager on 13.03.14 at 00:02
I was inspired by the exciting news of a new album to  make a rare posting. Pete's request for ideas for concert venues reminded me of something that happened a couple of years ago when I spent a much needed and very pleasant family holiday in a rented cottage in a favourite village of ours on the North Norfolk coast. Browsing through the visitors' book on the first day, my son suddenly called out "Dad, you'll NEVER guess whose been staying in this cottage recently....." Yep,it was  none other than the MV deity himself. As an  fan this was rather a spooky coincidence,but now knowing that Pete has a liking for this part of Norfolk can I suggest he tries for a concert booking at the Harbour Rooms in Blakeney. I might even have to book another holiday there myself if it were to come off.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by dr_john on 19.03.14 at 11:48
Possibilities in my neck of the woods: The Ropery Hall, Barton-on-Humber (in a converted ropewalk under the Humber Bridge); Lincoln Performing Arts Centre; Hull Truck Theatre; Scunthorpe Plowright Theatre. All decent medium-size venues with a local fanbase of right-thinking people.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Ian Ashleigh on 24.03.14 at 18:16
I think the Chequer Mead Theatre in East Grinstead will attract folk from an area centred around Gatwick

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Kevin Cryan on 13.01.15 at 09:33

on 03/11/14 at 19:19:00, Pete Atkin wrote :
Just a small update -- nine or ten of the tracks feature lead guitar from ... wait for it ... the legendary Chris Spedding, who has lost absolutely none of his abilities in all directions. † He even uses the SAME Fender amp which he used forty years ago - and not because he can't afford a new one. †He's back now living in Brighton having spent twenty nine of the intervening years as a session man in Los Angeles, and you don't do that by mucking about.

I'm currently working on horn arrangements plus charts for the female BVs. † Still some vocals for me to work on, but we're pretty well on course to have it all done by Easter or thereabouts for an official release in September.

I'm planning to give it as much of a PR push as I can afford, which will also mean raising my presence on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc., so watch out. † I'm also doing my best to generate as decent a gig list as I can, which means contacting venues myself rather than waiting for them to approach me, so if there's anywhere you know of where you think I might reasonably hope for a booking, do please let me know (an IM is probably the easiest way).

http://i.guim.co.uk/static/w-620/h--/q-95/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/pictures/2015/1/12/1421071633586/Chris-Spedding-012.jpg
A rare creature Ö Chris Spedding. Photograph: Roger Goodgroves/Music Pics/Rex

Ian Gittins of The Guardian reviews the "semi-legendary and utterly anonymous" †Chris Spedding at the 100 Club, London (http://www.theguardian.com/music/2015/jan/12/chris-spedding-review-100-club-london-old-school-r-and-b)

Kevin Cryan

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Pete Atkin on 14.01.15 at 12:06
Thanks for that link, Kevin.  

It's probably about time I posted some kind of an update on the new album.

It is now mixed and mastered, the licensing is under way, and the artwork is almost ready, so manufacturing is imminent.   Once we have copies, the PR process can begin.   If you want coverage (and we do) it is necessary to give editors a decent lead time before official release, a more or less arbitrary but necessary date, which will probably be in early May.  I know that sounds a long time away from when I started this process, but it is actually happening.

The album is called THE COLOURS OF THE NIGHT and will be available on CD and download, distributed by Proper and therefore available through all of the usual outlets, including, of course, the Hillside shop.  The CD will be in a digipak with a 20-page booklet including all the lyrics and notes on all the songs from Clive and me.  The tracks in order are --

1 The Colours of the Night (pka Here We Stay Mk.I)
2 We Will Love Again
3 The Way You Are With Me
4 The Beautiful Changes
5 Time To Burn
6 The Closer Someone Is
7 Slow Down For Me
8 Nothing Can Touch Us Now
9 I Know The Way
10 Cottonmouth
11 You Better Face It, Boy
12 Last Ditch (pka Here We Stay Mk.II)
13 Me To Thank

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Glenn on 14.01.15 at 13:29
Great news. The sooner it gets out there the better.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Mike Walters on 14.01.15 at 16:34
Can't wait.  And will be very interesting to hear The Beautiful Changes and Cottonmouth with this line-up.  

Title: Re: New CD
Post by SeŠn Kelly on 06.05.15 at 13:51
And two Here We Stay's - very kind of you Mr A!  :-)

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Douglas Fergus on 29.05.15 at 11:21
The Colours Of The Night available to pre-order on Amazon with scheduled release date given as 6th July.
Having said that, I plan to order direct from Hillside.

Douglas

Title: Re: New CD
Post by S J Birkill on 06.06.15 at 08:15
http://www.peteatkin.com/images/colours-331.jpg


I'm pleased to announce that Pete's new CD, The Colours Of The Night, is now available for advance order from the Hillside Music (http://www.peteatkin.com/hillshop.htm) online shop. Order today - shipments from our Bristol facility are expected to commence on or about June 28th.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Gerry Smith on 06.06.15 at 09:29
Got mine already!!! And absolutely outstanding it is too. Thoroughly recommended. The most significant release in a very long time, in my opinion.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Douglas Fergus on 06.06.15 at 16:11
Sorted!

And what a terrific setlist from last night.
Wish I'd been there - sounds like it was a great gig!


Title: Re: New CD
Post by dr_john on 10.06.15 at 21:41
WARNING: Listening to music - any kind of music whatsoever, no matter how apparently innocuous - can seriously improve your life.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Douglas Fergus on 12.06.15 at 11:47
Received my copy from Hillside already and it is quite wonderful.
IMO Pete and Clive's strongest release since The Road Of Silk, but maybe that's a reflection of the air of pervading sadness as I listen to what is likely the last big project collaboration from this pair of geniuses.
How on earth their music has eluded mainstream popularity is beyond me.
Anyway, for those of you still to obtain this delightful album.........enjoy!

Douglas

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Cary on 15.06.15 at 22:15
Just happened upon the press release here (http://www.planetearthpublicity.com/go/news/PETE_ATKIN_AND_CLIVE_JAMES_SONGWRITING_SWAN_SONG_ON_THE_COLOURS_OF_THE_NIGHT.html)

Title: New CD & Hillside shop
Post by S J Birkill on 16.06.15 at 18:08
Attention All Shoppers!

Pete is taking a short vacation, so he'll not now be despatching any product until June 29th.
But the on-line shop remains open for orders: your CDs will be despatched on his return.

http://www.peteatkin.com/images/shopimage640.png (http://www.peteatkin.com/hillshop.htm)

Steve

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Douglas Fergus on 17.06.15 at 11:32
I've listened to the album right through about 6 times now and IMHO it is right up there with the classic 70s material. The up-tempo numbers are ridiculously catchy, but what is remarkable is how Pete has sequenced the individual songs, bookended by the two versions of the title track and "Me to Thank" as a coda.
Very clever stuff.

Douglas

Title: F**king review
Post by S J Birkill on 29.06.15 at 03:25
Online music magazine folking.com (http://folking.com/pete-atkin-the-colours-of-the-night-hillside-cdhill09/) runs a short review of the new CD, by Dai Jeffries.

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Stephen Burgess on 04.07.15 at 16:26
The current issue of Uncut magazine (August 2015) has a review by Andy Gill of the new CD, unfortunately I don't think it is available online so you'll have to resort to picking up a copy in the newsagent like the old days. He gives it a 7/10 and says that it "represents the final chapter in the almost half century partnership of Pete Atkin and Clive James,a union that produced at least one masterpiece in Driving Though Mythical America". He highlights 'The Beautiful Changes' as being one of the best tracks along with 'The Closer Someone Is'. A generally positive review. Certainly, in my humble opinion, it is the best work that Pete and Clive have produced since the albums of the 1970's.

Title: More reviews
Post by Pete Atkin on 14.07.15 at 14:44
HiFi Choice magazine (July 2015): 4 stars (out of five) -- and they don't review many albums at all.

And thanks to James Kerr for advance notice that the upcoming edition of Record Collector magazine gives us a maximum 5 stars!

Title: Record Collector
Post by S J Birkill on 15.07.15 at 17:47
Pete Atkin

The Colours Of The Night *****
Hillside CDHILL 09

Grin and tonic? It's Pete and Clive's last round.

The subtext to this unexpected new release from Bristol folkie Pete Atkin is the imminent demise of his lyricist, Clive James. They say death is a good career move, but the much-loved poet has been making the most of the time he's been given, rekindling his 70s partnership with Atkin by supplying further words for him to put to music.

The welcome result is like finding a much-loved pair of shoes at the back of the wardrobe, the air of familiarity underscored by a revamped version of The Beautiful Changes, a song that titled a Julie Covington album of Atkin/James songs in 1971.

One set of new lyrics has been given two radically different musical settings (Clive apparently didn't like the first), and hence boasts two titles, The Colours Of The Night and Last Ditch; both approaches work. But it's the closing Me To Thank that tugs most at the heartstrings, given the all-too-real prospect of James' departure.

Atkin's back catalogue has traditionally been elusive: the See For Miles label's collapse was followed by incineration of his Demon reissues in the Tottenham riots of 2011. So grab this while you can and revel in a classic and much underappreciated partnership of Australian wit and a dry British musical delivery.

Michael Heatley

(Thanks to James Kerr for the copy of this review -- SJB)

Title: Re: New CD
Post by avner greenberg on 15.07.15 at 20:44
And many thanks to SJB for posting this. A generally good review, but "dry British musical delivery"? Objection, your honour!

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Pete Atkin on 17.07.15 at 10:17
I mean I really, really don't want to seem ungrateful, but, really, I mean, "Bristol folkie"???!!!

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Sylfest on 17.07.15 at 17:32
Can I put in a request for one of those good old slaver shanties?

Title: Q Review
Post by S J Birkill on 17.07.15 at 18:14
Pete Atkin
The Colours Of The Night: Songs by Clive James and Pete Atkin
Hillside, out 6 July

****

Superb final chapter in creative partnership between Brit singer-songwriter and Aussie broadcaster.

Singer-songwriter Pete Atkin has been making records since the '60s, but it's his collaborations with Clive James that he's best known for. James -- poet, critic and author -- brings wit and emotion to Atkin's melodies and the two have worked in harness since 1971's excellent The Beautiful Changes, creating records of low-key excellence. And now, as James's health is in doubt, they've reunited -- with long-term cohort Chris Spedding among others -- to make this superb, twilight-ish record, where songs such as Time To Burn and Nothing Can Touch Us Now offer an almost wry lyricism (there's a revisiting of The Beautiful Changes too). If you buy one album by an underrated '70s singer-songwriter with lyrics by a great TV critic and wit, make it this one.

David Quantick

Title: Uncut
Post by S J Birkill on 17.07.15 at 18:15
Pete Atkin
The Colours Of The Night
Hillside

7/10

Songwriting duo's last hurrah

This represents the final chapter in the almost half-century songwriting partnership of Pete Atkin and Clive James, a union that produced at least one masterpiece in Driving Through Mythical America. The literacy, emotional intelligence and musical aptitude that marked their best work is evident here in songs like "The Closer Someone Is", about the way we seek memories of old lovers in new partners, and the title track's recognition of the poor bloody infantry. Chris Spedding's back to lend force or filigree, as required, and Alan Barnes' sax wreathes sultry smoke around some songs. The best lines, though, come from the 1970 song "The Beautiful Changes": "Too late is the way a man finally learns/the light of salvation recedes and returns." How did Clive know, so long ago?

Andy Gill

Revelations:
Pete Atkin on his songwriting partnership with Clive James

"We've been writing songs together since 1967," Pete Atkin says of his long partnership with Clive James. "But our productive collaboration has now come to an end as a result of Clive's health." Diagnosed with leukaemia, emphysema and kidney failure, James announced in 2012 that he was "near the end". But he's hung on to publish a translation of Dante's Inferno, a volume of verse about his own imminent mortality and to reconnect with Atkin, with whom he collaborated on six albums in the 1970s and a further set of new compositions in 2003. Atkin describes thair final work as a collection of "entertainments", his music animating James' literate lyrics about change, obsession, divorce and mortality: "There's a strong narrative element to the songs, setting up a situation and exploring it. Everything Clive does, he does to the highest standard. He's never just tossed off a lyric in his life. He's very serious about it." Despite the circumstances, he insists there was nothing sad or maudlin about their final collaboration: "I still can't believe my luck hooking up with Clive all those years ago. He's spoilt me and I'm going to have to start writing my own lyrics from now on."

Nigel Williamson

Title: R2
Post by S J Birkill on 17.07.15 at 18:17
Pete Atkin
The Colours Of The Night (Hillside) www.peteatkin.com

***

Though they've never enjoyed any significant commercial success with their songwriting partnership, it's abundantly clear that Pete Atkin and Clive James have relished working together across the best part of five decades.

Undoubtedly the release of this record is a poignant moment for them both, given that it's likely marking their final collaboration, with writer and broadcaster James suffering terminal cancer. I doubt that lack of sales truly matters to them -- in the 70s they were signed to RCA but wriggled from their contract with a final album of humorous vignettes -- since James notes their collaboration as 'far and away the most fruitful artistic venture I have ever been mixed-up in'.

He claims to have ignored a record company executive who labelled their collaborations as 'folk', preferring instead to describe 'a blend of jazz, rock, pop, Tin Pan Alley, Broadway and anything else'. They also oft have a classic crooner's sophistication, as though they're being sung at a classy nightclub from somewhere back in the mists of time.

That elegance of composition sees us through the melancholic sadness of some of Clive's words, not specifically meant to reflect his own stage of life but absolutely resonating with his situation. And anyway, in their laments of loves lost they still have a life-affirming charm.

Ian Abrahams

Title: Hi-Fi Choice
Post by S J Birkill on 17.07.15 at 18:18
Pete Atkin
The Colours Of The Night
CD, Hillside

****

Back in the early seventies before Clive James became a TV star, his first gig was writing lyrics for the singer Pete Atkin. They collaborated on half a dozen albums and the Atkin-James team for a while rivalled the Elton John/Bernie Taupin partnership, which emerged around the same time. Terminally ill with leukaemia, James -- who describes their songwriting partnership as: "The most fruitful artistic venture I've ever known" -- has now reconnected with Atkin on one final, farewell collaboration.

James' literate lyrics, about subjects such as obsession, divorce and mortality, boast a strong narrative element, setting up a situation and exploring it like a series of three and four minute novellas. Accompanied by a chamber combo that includes Chris Spedding on electric guitar, the music animates James' words with an eclectic set of arrangements ranging from folk to jazz-rock and Tin Pan Alley pop nostalgia.

NW

Title: Re: New CD
Post by Kevin Cryan on 15.08.15 at 20:14
Posted by Dave Clarke (https://www.facebook.com/dave.clarke.37051?fref=photo)
to The Pete Atkin and Clive James Appreciation Society (https://www.facebook.com/groups/121229350012/)


Quote:
A 5 star review for The Colours of The Night in the new issue of Maverick magazine, out today.

https://scontent-lhr3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xft1/v/t1.0-9/11863233_10154120163225410_77148138745866138_n.jpg?oh=c79effa377f3cbd9d0236ba16ea9202d&oe=567A8471


Kevin Cryan



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