Since last posting I have been away for 9 weeks from November finishing the tail end of the Wicked UK tour, spending 4 weeks at the Millennium Centre in Cardiff and 5 weeks at the Palace Theatre Manchester. It was great to come back to this show as Wicked was the first West End theatre tour I ever did back in 2015 (and first ever real musical theatre experience I had, period), so it will always hold a special place in my heart. I have enjoyed depping on the show in London since 2015, but the opportunity to be playing it night after night gives you time to truly chisel away at the part and figure out what works best musically for the show. The drum part is quite malleable in one sense, yet simultaneously quite specific in others - so it’s a case of sifting out the areas than can be left to your interpretation and trying to bring out the best in it by making it sit as best as possible, and creating excitement and character when it is due. Fortunately Wicked is a show that allows this kind of exploration and for you to get deeper into the show each time. It’s very fluid (there’s next to no click tracks too) and you always have to be engaged. I had a fantastic two months with a great bunch of guys, and it was a pleasure to join the production for the end of its tour (and play on my own set up!).
I mentioned Patchwork Jazz Orchestra’s debut album last time I posted, which we recorded back in December 2017 at Air Studios and have been working on last year. Well, it’s finally finished and we are releasing it on March 1st with the album launch tour kicking off in a few days time! It’s called ‘The Adventures of Mr Pottercakes’ after pianist Liam Dunachie’s composition on the album, and features seven other tracks from different members in the band including two compositions by myself. The album really does sound fantastic and we are so pleased and with it. We’ve had some great reviews already and we’re really looking forward to finally being able to share it with the public. Visit the band’s website www.patchworkjazzorchestra.com to get your hands on a copy.
Below is a short clip of one of my compositions ‘Barcarolle’ from the session. It was the first thing we recorded when we got into the studio. I can still remember the excitement of it all and hearing our pieces back in the control room for the first time. Good times.