The second CD, which was limited to 50 numbered copies has now sold out but I am making more (not numbered) available. I’m doing this because I ordered too few of them after I put the first one out. I thought of this as an experiment and a different approach to making an album (and as with all experiments they must be allowed to fail). I realise that £10 is a lot to ask for a 4 track CD and I sold very few of the first one and wasn’t really expecting to sell many of the second release so only ordered 50. I wanted to make the second release more value for money by putting more tracks on it but didn’t realise it would sell so quickly. I know some of you probably still want one but might not have the money right now so I am going to order more CD’s and get more in for future releases.
I know there have been some disgruntled people on the forum and I apologise, the last thing I am trying to do is rip my fans off or give you ‘bad’ music, I am trying everything I can to survive and am grateful to everyone who has bought the CD’s. I know fans come and go and I don’t expect everyone to like everything I do or buy it but I can’t change who I am or keep doing the same thing over and over again.
It’s been a long struggle for me over recent years and sometimes I think it is a miracle that I have managed to keep going, but it’s not a miracle, it’s YOU! Many of you are new but so many of you have been supporting me and buying my music for a long time now and I know who you are and have got to know your names from the countless labels I have printed out! I thank you all from Olliemorr and Bere to The Blue Astronaut and The Quaker Goes Deaf, far too many to mention, you know who you are!! All of you far and wide from America, Belgium, France, Italy, Germany, Sweden, Japan, Chile, Australia and all the rest (not forgetting old Blighty!!), I thank you all and especially those of you who always buy two copies of everything I release just to help me out.
It’s been tough over recent years with the collapse of the music industry and illegal downloading. It’s been financially crippling but I have managed to pay back over £8000 to my distributors (for returns from shops and distribution companies that have gone bust) over the last 3 years and am now only just beginning to get back to being able to put a proper record out again and go into a studio with a band. I’ve had to sell CDr’s, lyric books, studio equipment and instruments to manage to keep going. I’m not complaining, I wouldn’t change a thing but some people still think that because I was on Jools Holland and did 5 Peel sessions I live in a world of incoming royalty cheques surrounded by a sea of guitars and a swimming pool!! Well, nothing could be further from the truth. I don’t have a record deal and I don’t ever want one again. When I had the money, I bought recording equipment and taught myself to use it because I always wanted to remain completely independent. When I didn’t have the money I had to sell stuff, I’m an artist, it’s what we have to do. So what, times are tough for everyone, I would have liked to play in goal for West Ham but I’m beginning to think it will never happen.
As far as six by seven is concerned, I have tried countless times to put the band back together. Most recently I buried the hatchet with drummer Chris Davis and we were on the point of going to play gigs last March when he had to pull out at the eleventh hour due to commitments with his own band. The rest of six by seven know where I am if they want to play gigs again. I’m so happy ex members James Flower and Pete Stevenson are up for joining me with this new project and we are starting something new and I wish the best of luck to Chris Davis and Sam Hempton with their bands.
Things are changing, the download rip off generation is disappearing and a new culture is emerging and people are starting to understand that musicians cannot survive if everyone just takes their music for free. The guys at the top have to decide if they can afford another Bentley but the guys at the bottom just die. That’s not what this e mail is about though, I’ve downloaded music myself, we all have. I’m trying to find ways of surviving in an ever changing industry and pay the musicians who play with me and apologise for mistakes I have made.
I also wanted to thank you for your support. I consider myself to be a lucky man. I love you all.