Shortly after first watching Amélie at the cinema, I purchased my grey Kawai ES1 digital piano - and alongside picking up the accordion - spent a lot of time composing during the couple of years just before I started uploading videos to YouTube.
I knew that these tracks held potential (one of the first composed of these, The Narrator, eventually became Waking Dream) - but I was also still so hugely drawn to the guitar, after having spent my teenage years in a band on the instrument... I can vividly remember back in the early 2000's, even after posting videos but before my YouTube channel really took off, how conflicted I felt over the decision of which genre of music, and which instrument, to pour my time into.
I recently rediscovered a treasure trove of this music on an old hard drive from this time period... piano ideas, orchestral tracks, and guitar sketches that I had written and recorded in the loft bedroom of my earliest YouTube videos. For years, my plan had been to take much of this music and perfect each track, taking them into the studio to eventually become proper releases.
However, as I have recently experienced, there is something bittersweet and beautiful about losing and then regaining your health that can have a profound effect upon one's perspective - with regards to the things that really matter. For instance, what I feel matters to me much more than 'perfection' in this moment, is that when I listen to these demos I can connect with who I was during the time period of all of this work. I can sense the aliveness of that time through the music, that the inspiration was flowing freely, providing me a feeling of invincibility that I have been really missing these past couple of years.
And so.. as a celebration of the past, and of recently reaching one year of cancer free - I am releasing almost 165 minutes of this demo material, untouched, as a behind-the-scenes look at everything I was working on throughout these early years.
This release, for me, is an act of hitting the reset button, before moving forwards with my music. I know that if I had not been so lucky with my own experience of cancer, then I wouldn't find myself sitting here today - and all of this music would never have been heard.
Instead, I'm very happy that all of the things I was writing and playing between the ages of 20-23 will finally be heard and enjoyed; this is my musical history. And although this music will be new to you, I hope it will prove as nostalgic for you as it is for me, especially for those of you who have been following my music since the time period in which it was recorded.
Demos and Daydreams (2003-2006) is a double album available now for Digital Download, containing 50 tracks of piano compositions, orchestral tracks and various guitar ideas - you can find this release in the store.
- More news and music soon!