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3D Balls in Rainbow Background
  • Writer's pictureJames Hawken

A little peace. Too much to ask?

Updated: Jun 3, 2023

Do you think things are going a bit mad? This track is me asking for the world to quieten down, just a bit...please!

I had the piano section sorted, as usual improvising, and needed a drum track. I tried several, even programming my own, but I wasn't satisfied with the 'feel'. So, I wanted a 'feel'. Where else would I find that other than from the drums of @EmilyDolanDavies (once again!)? Found a lovely, simple groove so I then had to re-record the piano along with Emily playing to get the nuances and rhythm working together with both of us.

Great! I've now got the 'feel'! But what is the 'feel'? What does the music suggest to me? The answer was a request, a request to the world and its hustle and bustle. Please be a little more 'quiet'. The phrase 'lower the hubbub' wrote itself across my internal page.

Right, now I have the idea for the track. I can't sing so I thought I'd write a poem and the rhythm of the track suggested it. My singing ability may be rubbish but I can write words in English (and Cornish as it happens) to scan to a metre and talk. So I conjured up Michael Rosen in my head and did my best to communicate the sentiment I was feeling. I then had to conjure up a narrator in my head for inspiration. Easy, think 'War of the Worlds', that brilliant allegorical Sci-Fi tale by H.G.Wells, specifically Jeff Wayne's classic sonic interpretation with the great voice and delivery from Richard Burton. If I could get just a nano particle of Mr. Burton's brilliance I might just pull it off. Well, I tried!

Now I wanted some hustley bustley ambience to set the scene. I'm not one for searching on the interweb for samples of field recordings, that's cheating, not original nor personal to me. What to do? I know, I'll go the the local town centre (Liskeard) and try to record the traffic and the hustle and bustle without attracting the suspicion of the pedestrians and getting arrested for sonic voyeurism or something (you never know with this ever so slightly to the right government). So, there I was loitering around the bus stop, going back and forth across the pelican crossing and pausing in shop windows, phone in hand. I hope I wasn't of interest to the security person watching the CCTV! Anyway I got it in the bag, about 40 minutes worth which I whittled down to about 30 seconds. I guessed my listeners wouldn't want a bloke talking to his mate about wanting a pee and going to the pub in order to carry out this bodily function!

So there you have it! I stuck all this together (sans pee conversation) and this is the result. If you share the same wish, I hope the track brings a sense of 'oneness' with other like minded people.

A bit of peace will do us all good!

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