• News

    The Never Ending Pageant – video promo

    April 3rd, 2014

    I’m delighted to share with you a new video created by San Diego Film maker Craig Rian to help promote my upcoming studio album ‘The Never Ending Pageant’.

    Bookmark and Share

    The Never Ending Pageant

    February 26th, 2014

    Hello folks,

    My new album ‘The Never Ending Pageant’ is finally finished. After recording the main bulk of the tracks last year at Analog Chew Studio in Santee, CA, I recently returned to California to mix and master it at the legendary Hyde Street studios in San Francisco.

    Once again, my good friend, mentor and Grammy Award Winning Engineer Alan Sanderson was in the main production chair. There was also some additional work undertaken by world renowned Producer & Engineer Ken Allardyce at his studio in Nairn, Scotland.

    At the moment I don’t have a release date set in the place as I work on a few things in the background before hand. I also hope to have a video teaser (from San Diego film maker Craig Rian) up on-line soon with regards to it. WATCH THIS SPACE!

    Thanks kindly for all your continued support and patience.

    Colin

    Bookmark and Share

    Support for Dave Arcari – Lemon Tree, Aberdeen

    February 19th, 2014

    I’m delighted to be opening the stage for International touring artist and fellow Scottish performer Dave Arcari at The Lemon Tree, this coming Saturday (22nd Feb). Doors at 7pm ish and first act on at 730(ish).

    For tickets (£7.50):

    http://www.aberdeenperformingarts.com/events/dave-arcari

    Thanks
    C x

    Bookmark and Share
  • Blog

    Voices in my head be gone, I’m just the guy that writes the songs!

    February 27th, 2014

    Well, once again I find myself staring over the stormy sea, as I do from time to time. Not metaphorically you understand, but actually standing, shivering my balls off, staring over the freezing cold, bloody sea…..just before you think I’m getting all deep and ‘sensitive singer songwritery’ (a cool new word).

    I’ve actually found myself a moment where I can breathe and reflect on the last year, it’s been absolutely mental, really it has! Where do I start? I made a record, I moved back to Scotland, I finished said record after heading back to California and I interspersed all that with lots of travel, gigs, life and trying my best to be a good Dad and Husband.

    Ok, let’s back up a wee bit shall we? April 2013 saw myself and Grammy award winning Engineer Alan Sanderson……………you do know he won a Grammy right? Have I not displayed that enough online? Well, it’s good for us all and he’s a good friend, so, I’m rightly mighty proud of him. Anyway I digress, myself, Alan and a band consisting of Brazilian guitarist Pedro Talarico, Larry Grano and Rick Nash unpacked our gear, beer and cheer into Analog Chew studio in Santee. It’s actually the old Strate sound studio where some of Doricana was recorded (Good for something, Into my garden & Peace in my mind) back in 2008 (I certainly took my time with that bastard)!

    Myself, Alan and Pedro had actually started working on the pre production of the album back in the January where I basically presented the songs to Pedro (in his tiny bedsit 5 minutes after meeting him), we sat down and played them, most were born with their boots on but we ended up ‘tweaking’ some, and some more than others. Did I also mention that at this point I couldn’t even go for a pint/shit/lunch/dental appointment *delete as appropriate* without San Diego superstar film maker Craig Rian training his camera on me! We’ve had some journey, however that’s a whole other blog, pint, conversation…..quite possibly a DVD……if you get my drift!!!?

    Anyhow, these early sessions really set the tone for the whole record and as always, my good friend Craig Rian was there to capture the whole thing. I think it’s been an incredibly great learning process for Craig as he’s now filmed the recording of an album almost from start to finish. I say almost because, before the pre production there is the ‘magic’, the writing of the song and as people know, songwriters are usually quite aloof and unrevealing of the whole writing thing…..well, I certainly am, it still surprises me that I can actually write songs, but we’re away to launch release number 4 (2 albums, 2 EP’s), so I should probably be a little less surprised these days!

    During these pre production sessions we demo’d about 18 songs, my intention was always to have just the 10 songs on this new record (The Never Ending Pageant in case you hadn’t heard) but I turned up with an 11th song at the 11th hour and quite frankly, it was just too good not to put on the record. I say that because you never know when you’ll do it again, if at all.

    The funny thing is, I always say that after I release a record…….’…never again, I am done, I am fulfilled creatively…’, blah, blah, bloody blah…I wish, but it’s like a drug to me, it goes away for a bit then I slowly write a few songs here and there and then BOOM it comes hammering back at me, gnawing and clawing at me, sometimes I actually try not to write songs because I know if I end up writing a good one I’ll be like aaaargh, I’ve got to record that just in case I get hit by a bus tomorrow (superb Scottish optimism at it’s finest).

    Getting back to these 18 songs we demo’d, where did they all go? Well, we dropped some because they were a little too bluesy, they were good songs all the same and ended up being pretty decent demo’s, but it didn’t fit with the direction the main songs were taking the album. I’ll get back to the bluesy ones at some point (I woke up this morning derum duh dum with a whisky in my hand derum duh dum ………anyone?).

    Some of the other ones just didn’t quite work, they may have had great choruses or a great lyric or good energy but they just lacked that little bit of spark or magic that was needed for it to be worth our while pursuing it. This level of QC, I’m lead to believe isn’t common place in the indie artist field! Actually, we had one song which everyone thought was going to be the ‘hit’ but fat boy here just couldn’t quite hit the chorus, t’was a little too high and the verse t’was a little too low……sigh, I’ve since rewritten half of it and may well look at it again in the future on a cold and stormy night! The problem initially lay at the fact I had written it for a rather talented singer friend of mine by the name of Terry McDermott, you may have heard of him? The Voice? Season 3? Scottish?

    Anyway, fast forward to…….or in fact………hold the press, I seemed to have gone off on some sort of ‘Billy Conellyesque’ ramblings, I hate when I do that but I can’t help it, I tend to write as I speak…….. when I can in fact be arsed doing one of these blogs. Where were we?? Ah, right, April 2013, Me. Alan. Heading into Analog Chew. Santee. California. Bunch of songs. Band……right?

    Over the course of the next week, we proceeded to record the basic tracks for the album, usually doing two a day. The following week we added overdubs of acoustic guitars, vocals, harmonies, keys, strings etc. The guys involved in the overdubbing that weren’t involved in the initial basic tracks were the brilliant Dave Curtis on keys, the amazing Rick Schmidt on Lap steel / dobro and the beautiful and wonderfully talented singer Taylin Rae on harmonies!

    Everyone involved pretty quickly realised we were making something quite special here. I know we all say that and ‘yeah man, we’re making the most amazing piece of music ever known to manfuckingkind’, much bumping of chests, cracking of whisky bottles and popping of champagne corks later and you realise it’s pretty much the same ol’ shit!

    Anyhow, I’ve already recorded one fairly well received album (Doricana, you heard of it? right?) and I can tell you, it wasn’t the same feeling making that as making ‘Pageant’, there was an emotional connection that we all felt, maybe it’s because everyone knew I was heading back to Scotland, maybe the planets aligned, maybe everything just came together for a reason because we’ve been working towards it for 7 years and used Doricana as a test run (sorry if you really like that record…..I do too), maybe we got lucky or maybe just maybe every single one of us in that room has just got better and better and we peaked at the right time? No, ach, who knows, I’m not here to assess, I’m just the guy that writes the songs!

    So, a little later in the year, myself and my family moved back to Scotland. I don’t know if you have moved house before? I’ve moved house 37 times, yep, 37 bloody times, I’m actually 37 years old…in my fairly pish mathematics that works out at 1 move every year. So, as you can imagine, I hate moving house and if you’ve moved house, you’ll know it’s a jumbo pain in the arse, especially if you have to move to another continent!! So, myself, the bairn, the wife and the cat, all moved back to Scotland. Where we spent the next few months getting settled, working, living, growing older and basically setting ourself up for the next chapter of our life.

    However, at the back of mind this record was tugging and nagging at me ‘…come on Colin, you really need to finish me off, you’ll never be as good as Bob Dylan if you’ve got a bunch of half assed finished recordings and demo’s from Alan Sandersons front room…’, damn those nagging voices!

    So, come the turn of the year (January 2014) and after a great recording session up in Nairn, Scotland with MOD Gold medal winning Gaelic singer Margaret Stewart and world renowned engineer Ken Allardyce (Supertramp, Fleetwood Mac, Celine Dion), I pulled the trigger and we booked the wonderful Hyde Street Studios in San Francisco to mix and master my new record ‘The Never Ending Pageant’. I’ve got ‘previous’ with this studio, 11 of the 13 songs from Doricana were actually mixed on this wonderful old Neve desk. You’ve got to love analog…..no, analogue….no, analog…whatever.

    I knew this desk was wonderful but I also knew that this studio is WHAM BAM right in the middle of the Tenderloin district which quite frankly is the big yellow boil on the arse of San Francisco. The stench of shit, piss and god knows what else is prevalent and the daily walk to the corner store is a journey unto itself…..in fact, by the end of the week I was actually out busking for the good folks, junkies, crack whores and drug dealing gangsters of the place. Man that was great fun, didn’t get any tips! Stingy buggers!

    Myself, Craig Rian, Alan Sanderson and Pedro Talarico were all involved in the mix / master session, Craig filmed all the important, interesting bits. The rest of the time we just chest bumped, cracked bottles of whisky, popped champagne and proclaimed this to be the most amazing piece of music known to #ManFuckingKindYeBas!!!

    Haha, naturally I jest….. well, time will tell! ;) I honestly don’t know when it will be released, I’m hoping for Spring but I want to make sure we don’t make an arse of it like we did with Doricana (long story, full of clichés and the usual crap, maybe buy me a pint sometime?).

    Till then, I will enjoy the silence in my head and the lack of self created pressure on my part to make another record…….well, till next time!

    Bookmark and Share

    New Album, Pastures New, errrrrrm DVD release????.

    May 18th, 2013

    Once again I find myself back in ol’ Blighty for a few weeks, I will be here a lot more soon, more on this later

    Where do I start with regards to the last few months…..well, I finished recording my brand new studio album out at Analog Chew Studio in Santee, California. Once again, Mr Alan Sanderson is on Production and Engineering duties and did a terrific job. Alongside him we had the Brazilian Wizard Pedro Talarico who is a very valuable member of the team (it truly was such a great team effort). Actually, before we pop the corks, throw this bad boy in shrinkwrap and start selling it to the masses at StarBuck’s we have a few very small things to record / tweak (blah blah blah) in an overdub sense but it’s pretty much done.

    Thanks to Jerry Sisti and Zach at Analog Chew who were incredibly hospitable and profesional. Special shout out to his brother (John Sisti), who took some amazing photographs of the session (will air some soon). Everybody involved did an amazing job. The general consensus is that we have created something emotional, something special, however…thats not really for us to decide, is it!? Much chest bumping, high fiving, whisky cracking etc has been had but we still have a lot of work to do in a mixing and finessing sense. Also, I’m working on a special guest or two! More later.

    I won’t say too much about the new album at the minute other than we recorded 11 songs, a couple have been in my set for a while but most are new. The album title is also the title of one of the songs…….. I know, I know, I always feel that it’s a bit of a cop out when acts do that but the title just fits the general vibe of the album, plus the title is great and the track is really great too………hmmmm, well that’s really not up to me either (right?), the wife has told me to rein it in a bit (as always….she’s Scottish) as I get too excited (not visibly of course being Scottish) and tend to bump my gums about it, more with regards to what a great job everybody did than anything else. :) One more thing I shall say is, I stepped out of my comfort zone for some of these songs and I left everything in the studio……….I was knackered for about 2 weeks afterwards:)

    OK, the main reasons I can’t say too much about the release of this new album yet is that I first have the ‘small’ matter of moving from San Diego, California back home to Aberdeen, Scotland. After several years myself and the family are heading back to our homeland. I’ll be posting a date and venue for a ‘See you soon’ soiree of sorts in San Diego, CA for all our Southern Californian friends.

    Finally, Mr Craig Rian continues to follow me about like Paparazzi to Kim Kardashians arse, he filmed the whole recording process and we continue to capture great stuff for the mooted DVD release. What can I say? It will be done when it’s done!!! :)

    I hope to see you somewhere down the line sometime, somehow…….. soon.

    Love
    C x

    Bookmark and Share

    2012, taking the foot off the gas downhill!

    January 16th, 2013

    Apologies for the lack of blog action on here of late. Life has been something else for sure!

    Well, 2012 was a hell of a year for me and I don’t mind telling you that it’s been the best year of my life so far. As you may or may not know, I became a Father for the first time back in March and that came with it’s own set of challenges. My time has become very limited and precious. So, it was my intention to take the foot off the gas a wee bit in 2012 and as you may have seen, that didn’t quite happen.

    I managed to maintain some kind of live presence albeit in a much more regional sense throughout California. I was also blessed to win another San Diego Music Award for Best Acoustic Act in August, it was particularly special as my wife and daughter were both there to share it with me. We also captured it on film, this will be featured on my upcoming tour DVD that I’ve been working on with Craig Rian since 2010, we are excited to share this with you later this year……..oh I also release a limited edition live EP called ‘Doon tae the wid’, this was taken from a gig Idid in Sacramento during the 2011 Sacramento and Woodland Highland Games and Celtic Festival. This was also used as further promo for the upcoming DVD.

    2012 was finished off nicely with an appearance at the New Year party in my hometown of Stonehaven, Scotland. I was the opening act for Scotland’s ‘Red Hot Chili Pipers’ in front of 6000 folk, it was a brilliant night all round with the exception of the long lines for the bar, the guys will get that sorted for Hogmanay this year, that I have no doubt of. Special thanks to Michelle Ward and June for their support and drive.

    So, currently I’m in the middle of demoing new songs for my new album, I have loads of songs but I’m in the whittling down process where I decide what my best 15 are, then we demo them and then whittle them down to 10. I’m also on the look for some funding, so, if anyone is interested in possibly coming in on an executive producer basis give me a shout, I’ll bring the beer…..if not then I guess I best crack open my piggy bank again!!! ;)

    Love
    Colin

    PS, I promise to update this a tad more this year.

    Bookmark and Share
  • Tours+Shows

    Upcoming Shows

    May 18 @ 01:00 PM — Marykirk, UK
    Marykirk Raft Race - Details and gig TBC
    May 24 @ 10:00 AM — LIVE at Captain Toms - ONLINE
    Participating in Episode 2 of \'Live at Captain Toms\' LIVE TV video stream. Filmed in Captain Toms in Aberdeen. Runs from 10am GMT to Noon
    May 31 @ 12:00 PM — Laurenckirk, UK
    Balmakewan Beer Festival, FULL BAND GIG - Details TBC
    Jul 25 @ 09:30 PM — Stirling, UK
    The Settle Inn, 91 St Mary\'s Wynd, Stirling FK8 1BU, United Kingdom
    Jul 27 @ 12:00 PM — Stonehaven, UK
    Party in the Park, Mineralwell Park, Stonehaven -TBC

    Click here to see Colin's events calendar.

    The articles below cover upcoming and past shows.

    Support for Dave Arcari – Lemon Tree, Aberdeen

    February 19th, 2014

    I’m delighted to be opening the stage for International touring artist and fellow Scottish performer Dave Arcari at The Lemon Tree, this coming Saturday (22nd Feb). Doors at 7pm ish and first act on at 730(ish).

    For tickets (£7.50):

    http://www.aberdeenperformingarts.com/events/dave-arcari

    Thanks
    C x

    Bookmark and Share

    The Lemon Tree, Aberdeen. 8th Dec. James Grant

    November 6th, 2013

    On the 8th of December I’ll be opening the stage at the Lemon Tree in Aberdeen for acclaimed Scottish singer songwriter James Grant. Doors at 730pm, I’ll be playing a wee set sometime shortly after that.

    Tickets for this can be obtained here:

    http://www.aberdeenperformingarts.com/events/james-grant

    C x

    Bookmark and Share

    Scottish dates September / October 2013

    September 13th, 2013

    On the 25th September I will be opening up for American singer songwriter John Emil at Caffe Borsa in Dundee, the show kicks off at 9pm. Tickets are £7 and can be purchased here:

    http://www.ticketweb.co.uk/event/john-emil-tickets/71083

    Bookmark and Share
  • Music+Shop

    music+shop

    November 1st, 2009

     

    Doon Tae The Wid (Live EP) Now Available For Purchase!

    Click a song title below for complete song information.



     

    Doricana Now Available For Purchase!

    Click a song title below for complete song information.



    Bookmark and Share
  • Photos