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January 2019 

Happy New Year everyone! January has been spent planning livestreams on Facebook and Instagram playing a selection of my original songs. The first stream kicked off last weekend with nine tracks on piano or 12-string and here's a link Livestream January 2019

I used PA for vocals and guitar, mainly just to balance out the volume against the piano, whch can overpower everything if you're not careful! However, I think I prefer singing into a mic as it seems to give me a bit more flexibility of expression - I'm not the loudest singer in the world!

 

 

 

 

Livestream preparation.

 

 

The songs were a mix of established and very new ones; some haven't hit the studio yet and some are midway through production for a Spring release. My plans for February are to keep streaming, but aim for 5-7 originals per set. Also, I'm going to 'theme' the songs so I have themes ready for Places, Emotions and Stories. Watch out for ads on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter!

Many thanks for all the feedback on the stream and to those who shared it around. Being part of a bigger community is much appreciated and also, the extra edge of a live stream really helps to focus on getting the best out of the songs, particularly if they are new and eary-stage.

All the best for 2019 and see you in February!

October 

Well, October has raced by and for me musically, it has been very much a month of preparation. I've started work on writing some new songs for a 2019 release, been rehearsing some recent songs ready for a visit to a studio in North East England (where they will receive a very different musical treatment) and also been getting ready for a performance on 26th November at Chesham Folk Club for performing some original songs in a show 'Songs from the Front', which is a commemoration to the centenary of the end of World War 1. This is in conjunction with John Bickley from the Invisible Folk Club, a web radio station that supports independent artists - go to their Facebook page for all the information, and do take a listen. 

Also in October, I have been involved in a great new musical collaboration, mainly playing piano and keys and suggesting songs. I'm really excited about it and hope to be able to tell you more in due course, but it's currently in the promotional planning stage. It's taken up quite a bit of studio time to get the right feel and passion, and look forward to telling you much more about it in the future. 

I've been focusing quite a bit on my Instagram site of late at Instagram.com/Alan_Garmonsway  This is where I often first perform my new song ideas as they are developing and it's great for getting some interactive feedback. Drop by and take a look, you'll be very welcome there.

September 

Things have started apace this September month! Having just spent a week travelling through France, I've hit on some inspiration for a few more songs, inspired by places like Biarritz and Carcassonne. So they are now being worked up on piano and guitar!

AVA Live Radio will soon be featuring 'To the Vendee' from my new ep 'The Bridge' during September, and I've also had 'Chosen Years' from the same album also played on an FM radio station in Gloucestershire, UK as well. In addition, Invisible Folk Club have published two further podcasts of myself and Anne Cunningham playing some of the 'Ridgeway' Album songs live and you can find these through the Invisible Folk Club website.

I'm getting more into collaborations, and as well working on new songs with Anne, I'm also collaborating with some US and UK artists on a range of songs, some self-penned, some original material from other artists and some classic tracks. It's a bit of an adventure trying these new things, but I've found that colleagues' new ideas and approaches can really change the complexion of my songs. All I'm doing really is trying to follow what is in the best interests of each song to make them as memorable as possible!

August 2018 

Hi, June and July were really busy months as I spent most of them in a recording studio getting my next ep down on digital. There are six songs, mostly written very recently and I played all instruments one-at-a-time, 70 individual tracks in all. The album is called 'the bridge' because the songs all relate in some way to bridges, either physical or (mostly) metaphorical, spanning different times of my, or others', lives. It will be out shortly and I'm really looking forward to sharing it with you.

In addition, I'm putting out a 'single' (2 tracks actually) which are instrumentals I wrote and recorded particularly for friends in France - a marriage tune and one about a small town in Deux Sevres, Western France. It's by way of a 'thank-you' for all the hospitality and friendship I've received there over the years.

August continues to be busy as I gear up for launching the album. Also, I've started rehearsing for a show in November called 'Songs from the Front'. These are original songs from a musical play I co-wrote a while back called 'Of Heroic Hearts', and we are combining some of those original songs with another colleague's songs from an album he is calling 1918. All of these songs commemorate the centenary of the end of World War One.

I've been focusing quite a bit on Instagram recently - take a look at my page on www.instagram.com/alan_garmonsway.

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DECEMBER AND REFLECTIONS

I thought it would be nice to take stock of this year, seeing as it has come to a close and we start another 'turning of the year'. 2018 saw me start out with a new album Ridgeway in the early stages of marketing, and nothing much else. So, I can happily add the highlights over the course of this year have been...

- a new website (this one!) where I can let you know what's going on and get your feedback,
- releasing two further eps, City Canvas and The Bridge. I've gone for ep's this year as I like to theme a few songs together if I can, but often with a full 12/13 track album, some of the songs often are lost, as promotion activities always seem to focus on one or two songs from an album. Hence ep's for me is the happy medium!
- a big focus on Instagram for me. I quite like the one minute video approach and the spontaneity that can bring as you're writing and  recording songs, so take a look at my page at www.instagram.com/alan_garmonsway . Also, I've started to pick the best of those one-minute sessions for the bestroomsongs YouTube page.
- revisiting some of the Ridgeway songs and also earlier songs commemorating the centenary of World War 1 through podcasts, broadcasts and live performances with colleagues from Invisible Folk Club (they have tons of music and information on Facebook and other social media sites), Anne Cunningham (co-artist on Ridgeway) and others,
- writing about a dozen new songs for further development in 2019, and
-  spending 3 days in a studio near Durham, UK where an ep of 5 of my favourite self-penned songs are being worked on at this pont in time. I'll be heading up there in March to finalise things, but that is sounding like a really nice collaboration and bringing in new ideas to some of my songs.

So, Happy New Year, may it be very successful for you and thanks to you all for your help, assistance, support and taking the time to have a read or listen. It's much appreciated and I'm setting my plans in place for 2019, so I hope you'll all be part of this.

 

NOVEMBER

I had a really busy November! It all started with a week visit to the North East of England to record four of my tracks for the next EP. There's still a way to go but was really pleased to see the old home town and catch up with longstanding friends.

I also performed some of my musical play songs with other friends 300 miles further south in a night called 'Songs From the Front', to commemorate the centenary of the end of World War 1. The photo is from that evening. December looks equally busy - more on that later!