It Is Publication Day And Brand New Poppysong Recording + Video
Thursday, 22 August 2019
After the years of singing in the kitchen, creeping on stage at Bristol Old Vic and venturing out on the road to pubs, clubs, festivals and living rooms in the UK and beyond, followed by the hard slog crowdfunding years and all the writing, On The Road Not Taken finally makes its way into the wider world today
It feels like the world is a much darker place than when I first started to do this,…
Nearing The End Of The Road
Friday, 22 February 2019
Hello Dear Subscribers,
The end of the road is in sight! Since my last dispatch we have worked though the proofs of the book and these are now being collated at Unbound HQ. Also, excitingly, the front cover has been designed and I will be able to reveal this to you very soon.
This means the supporters list will close this Sunday night 24th Feb at midnight. After that it will not be possible…
Happy Christmas update from me
Friday, 21 December 2018
Hello Dear Subscribers,
I want to wish you all a very Happy Christmas and to update you on the progress of On The Road Not Taken.
Since my last update the book has been through two edits overseen by my brilliant editor Scott Pack that have really helped the flow of the story. The manuscript was then passed to my in-house editor, Ella Chappell who will nurture the book though the rest of the…
Latest news and BBC Radio 4 transmission.
Monday, 6 August 2018
Hello Dear Supporters,
It finally happened. In late June I was teaching a radio drama writing course at Ty Newydd on the Llyn Peninsula, when the pledge came in that took the total over 100%. There followed a period of intense writing, followed by the strange moment of standing over the laptop, hand hovering over the send button. I pressed it and the first draft went off to my editor, Scott…
Nearly there. Can you help make this happen?
Friday, 4 May 2018
Dear Subscribers. The book is now 87% funded. Please can you help me by sharing this little piece far and wide on socal media. Thank you. Paul
This was me on the main stage of Bristol Old Vic in Feb 2016 singing in public for the first time in 30 years.
Two years and many gigs later and I know more about singing, stories, the voice, music and stage fright than I thought was possible…
A Vlog From The Front Line
Wednesday, 11 April 2018
Hello Dear Subscribers. 86% funded now and I am deep undercover writing the book. Just popped out for a moment to post this brief missive.
I have something to shout about!
Friday, 15 December 2017
Hello Dear Subscribers. Thanks to everyone who has come on board during the living room tour and subsequent weeks, the book is now 82% funded! That means only 18% to go. At long last it seems as if the end is in sight.
I reckon I need about another 50 subscribers to reach the finish line, so if there is anyone you know who might be interested please tell them about On The Road Not Taken…
Living Room Tour Gig #6 Salcombe. 14th October
Wednesday, 22 November 2017
At Eastleigh I put on my headphones and disappear into my own world, missing an announcement that says my train has changed destination. That is why, after a diversionary ride though Hampshire, I have ended up here, in the Upper Crust on Southampton Central with an hour to spare, sitting by the window eating a mozzarella and tomato baguette. It occurs to me I could tell the story of my life…
End of Tour Update... individual blogs still to come.
Tuesday, 7 November 2017
I arrived home on Sunday evening after the most incredible month travelling across England and Wales singing songs and telling stories in living rooms and kitchens. I had never asked for help like this before and was awed by the generosity of everyone who opened up their homes and filled them with food, drink and lovely people. I told my stories and every night, after the gig, people came up and…
Living Room Tour Gig #5 Bishopstoke. October 13th.
Friday, 27 October 2017
With guitar on back I walk down the footbridge stairs at Eastleigh station. Glen is on the other side of the ticket barriers wearing an exotic hat, sporting a white beard and holding a walking stick. It is more than thirty years since we last met and we have both changed, but I recognise him right away. We head into town in search of a taxi.
Re-kindled friendships are one of the wonderful…
Living Room Tour Gig #4 Winchester University. October 12th.
Tuesday, 24 October 2017
Late afternoon sun on the meadows of the Itchen Valley. A blaze of autumn colour. A feast of memory. The train approaches Winchester.
It was on an autumn day 35 years ago I came here to take a degree in Drama, Theatre and Television Studies. By then I had stopped singing in front of people. Although I became immersed in recording and played the guitar whenever I could, I never actually sang…
Living Room Tour Gig #3 The Thunderbolt, Bristol. October 11th.
Monday, 16 October 2017
Newport station looks bleak this rainy afternoon as I step on to the platform and discover a missed connection. Avoiding water cascading though holes in the roof, I make my way to a bench next to the closed down WH Smiths kiosk. Next to me is an old man in washed out fleecy trousers. He looks at me for a moment then raises his hand in an invitation to high five. As I return the gesture he snatches…
Living Room Tour Gig #2 (in a hall) The Isle of Portland, Dorset 26th September 2017
Monday, 9 October 2017
I wake early and lay still, enjoying the deep silence of the woods outside my bedroom. When it is light I lift the blind to see the hills shrouded in a fine mist. There is such a sense of peace in this place and the welcome so warm, it is hard to say goodbye. Pete drives me though the Dorset countryside to Bridport where I will catch a bus to the next gig.
This is where I came on holiday…
Living Room Tour Gig #1. Axminster, Dorset 25th Sept 2017
Friday, 6 October 2017
I leave home with a small guitar and a backpack and lock the front door. I have been sleeping badly and last night only managed three hours, so went out running along the River Taff this morning to wake up and for a while it has worked. Now, stepping into the taxi, under a brooding grey sky, I am overwhelmed by a wave of tiredness that lasts from Cardiff to somewhere down the line in Somerset…
Live in Bristol 11th October
Thursday, 5 October 2017
Hello Dear Subscribers,
Firstly, a big thank you to everyone who has come on board recently.
The Living Room Tour began last week with two gigs in Dorset. I willbe telling the story of the tour in blogs and the first will appear here soon.
The big news is that next Wednesday 11th October I am performing songs and stories from On The Road Not Taken in my favourite music venue in Bristol…
Please can I appear in your living room?
Wednesday, 23 August 2017
Hello Dear Supporters.
Firstly, thank you to everyone who has signed up in the last couple of months. I am very grateful.
It is time to get this show back on the road.
Do you have a space in your home that fits 15 or more people? Would you like to host a very special, pop up musical event?
The idea is very simple; I come for free and perform an intimate song and story show in…
Tuesday, 11 July 2017
Hello dear subscribers. It has been a while I know. I have been living though an intense few months writing words, running workshops and writing music for different shows, including the soundtrack for an adaptation of The Borrowers running at Polka Theatre in Wimbledon until the end of August.
And then I moved.
After 13 years love, loss and laughter, children growing up, plays written and…
One Third Of The Way There + Hal An Tow
Wednesday, 10 May 2017
Hello Dear Subscribers,
The book is now one third of the way to publication thanks to your generous support. Things have slowed down a bit in the last few weeks as I took time off the campaign trail to start writing a musical about tattoos, trigger samples in a live broadcast with the BBC Concert Orchestra, and go to the wonderful Isles of Scilly to read poems to older people, run a writing…
30% and Thank You All
Monday, 10 April 2017
Hello Dear Supporters,
We have now reached 30% of the funding target with 112 people signed up. So a big thank you to everyone who has come on board so far. It was never going to be easy and is going to take a while, but I am determined to get this book out into the world.
So in the months ahead I am planning to run a series of writing workshops and events to promote the book…
Friday, 17 March 2017
Often, it feels selfish, in these dark days of Trump/Brexit/refugee crisis/Syria/famine in Africa, to be writing a book about Me. Then I look back over the messages received after On The Road Not Taken went out on Radio 4, and I see people who I don’t know, telling their own stories back to me. I hope that is what happens with the book. I tell one story, but there is space for the reader to relive…
25% hurrah + bye bye shed + sunglasses + smoothies + Poppysong
Monday, 13 March 2017
And then the counter on the website showed that the book was 25% funded. So time for a wide ranging vlog of profound thanks.
Making a Music Video
Tuesday, 7 March 2017
Here is a blog I wrote last year about making a video to accompany the song Brislington Diamonds.
Nearly at 25% funding. I may have a special video party to celebrate the moment. Meanwhile I hope you enjoy this...
It is a sunny Saturday afternoon. I strap on my guitar on Bristol’s harbourside. My daughter and her partner fire up their cameras. I start singing along to a song that…
New Extract. It is June 1975 and I want to buy a record...
Thursday, 23 February 2017
Here is a short extract from my work in progress memoir On The Road Not Taken. I am 13 years old and have saved up enough money to by a record. It is a big event having this much money and so stands out as a memory. Because there are two narratives in the book running concurrently, one from childhood and one set in the present, I am experimenting with writing the past story in the second…
Tuesday, 24 January 2017
Thank you very much for subscribing to my book. I am very grateful. Here in the shed I will be posting blogs and videos that only you can see and these will tell the story of the book writing process as I progress. I will share the highs and lows of the adventure as I head down the road towards the beautifully designed hard covers that are just over the horizon. So far I have been out on the road…