I mostly compose music while on the move. It is so much more inspiring than when I am sitting. There is something about walking, in particular, which sets up a rhythm as a background to an idea. I remember that the crunching gravel in the bushland of the Australian outback, as I strode along, gave me a natural beat against which to set any ideas which started to develop. As soon as a good idea emerged I would hum the basic theme into a tape recorder and continue walking. Of course the rough sketches, when played back, sounded breathy and hopelessly inadequate musically and yet they were enough to remind me of the melody which I later developed into a fully recorded and finished piece. The whole process takes about twelve hours per track. This is much less time than it takes to record a song because no vocals are involved and there are no live musicians to sound check and record over again until the performance is right. Just myself, my imagination and my musicianship.
“LOCH NESS ENIGMAS”
Creating an album for myself is quite different to creating one which is the backdrop to a story with a narration. The starting point is completely different. Rather than beginning with no ideas and no directions in particular I had a story line with which to work. I listened carefully to the words of Adrian Shine, the scientist at the heart of the research into Loch Ness. As Adrian started to speak I began to get a feeling for the nature and tempo of each part of the story. The music emerged as he spoke and I was eager to get back to the studio to record ideas while they were still fresh.
When I joined Smokie the intro music consisted of a processed version of Holst’s “Mars”, from The Planet Suite. While creating a specific mood it seemed too limited for the band’s constantly changing material. So I began recording intros which were in keeping with the album tracks and, in particular, with the opening song. Over the years there have been fourteen of these and I am sure I shall be writing number fifteen fairly soon. At every Smokie concert there is an intro and an outro, which create a musical backdrop for the band to enter and exit the stage.
“WORLD OF MUSIC”
My music career has taken me to all parts of the globe, from which I have drawn inspiration for this album. The twelve tracks capture the mood of various territories, taking the listener on a musical globetrot. The album begins with the track “Kenyan Sunrise”, which was an outright winner in Unisong’s International Song Competition of 2001, and also features three other Unisong accredited tracks.
After I received a lot of comments from people about the diversity of my albums and, in particular, the fact that there always appear to be tracks which show a less serious side to my music, I decided to compile tracks of a similar mood which would suit those who don’t wish to be shaken awake. This album, a favourite amongst therapists, maintains a gentle mood which is ideal for relaxation and calm.
"THE CODE WITHIN"
This is my latest work and one of which I am very proud. The tracks vary enormously yet they contain a single theme - that of spiritual happiness and awareness. The mood is reflective yet positive. The universe is a great place to live and to create your own story. Follow mine by listening to the nine tracks on this album.