In these extraordinary times, we have had to swiftly adapt to unprecedented changes and ways of living as we attempt to keep one another safe from the threat that is COVID-19. While all entirely necessary, it’s natural that this will impact upon us in different ways.
As a relative, I miss my family. As a friend, I miss all of those I’m privileged to have call me the same. As someone who loves my freedom and independence, I miss striking out on adventures, having something as simple as a coffee in a new place, or meeting people for a pint and a chat in a favourite pub. As a music and theatre fan, I miss the excitement and thrill of the live experience.
But what we get in return for staying home is our safety and that of others – invaluable, and of paramount importance. It’s also a way of showing respect and gratitude to those on the front lines who leave their homes daily to protect us and care for those who are sadly suffering with the virus. It’s for all of these reasons that I wouldn’t have it any other way. Simply put, it’s the right thing to do.
What those of us who can, and therefore should, stay home get is a chance to rest and reflect. To do or explore something new, to discover, or rediscover whatever we might wish to, if we so wish.
As an artist who writes, sings, makes music and takes photographs, I have noticed some interesting things about my responses to the experience as I continue to stay home.
My writing, when I can produce any, appears to insist on either the documentation of the factual, or abstraction in the extreme. This is making for some interesting output which I continue to fashion into a slow but burgeoning piece of work as time goes on.
I find, on the whole, that my instinct when it comes to creating has leaned strongly towards the visual through the medium of photography. There is a body of work there too which I hope to publish in the future.
In the meantime, what I can share is music.
Before the remarkable and worrying events of the past number of weeks, I had recorded songs for release, was actively performing and had a number of gigs on the horizon, all of which have naturally, and quite rightly, been cancelled. While I look forward to the day when I can pick all of that up again, what is most important now is staying home, staying safe, and acting in the best interests of one another.
While writing and photography are carrying the mantle at the moment in terms of new work, where I’m finding the most pleasure and comfort with music is in taking a trip through some of my favourite albums, and picking songs from them to cover. As I continue to record these offerings, I’ll add them below.
Full credit to each of the artists who have created these songs, all of which I’d rank among my favourites.
I hope you enjoy listening to and watching them as much as I did researching and performing them.
But most of all, I hope you are well as you read this. That you are taking care of yourself and connecting as best you can with those you love, no matter how far apart from them you find yourself.
Stay home. Stay safe. Stay in touch.
Dexys Midnight Runners – I’m Just Looking
Slade – How Does It Feel
Pulp – Sylvia
Paul McCartney – Junk
David Bowie – Thursday’s Child
There Are Worse Things I Could Do from Grease, originally performed by Stockard Channing
Frankie Goes To Hollywood – The Power of Love
Blur – This Is A Low
Kate Bush – Wuthering Heights
Manic Street Preachers – You’re Tender and You’re Tired
David Bowie – Lady Grinning Soul
Suede – The 2 of Us
Manic Street Preachers – Further Away
David Bowie – Where Are We Now?
Supergrass – It’s Not Me
The Kinks – Some Mother’s Son
Elliott Smith – I Better Be Quiet Now
Super Furry Animals – Demons
Supergrass – Moving
Amy Winehouse – Wake Up Alone
Manic Street Preachers – Born A Girl
Supergrass – St. Petersburg
The Beatles – I’m So Tired
Manic Street Preachers – Enola/Alone
Super Furry Animals – It’s Not The End of the World?