The Recording

The first recording I ever did (albeit at the most basic level) was in 1970. The previous year I'd bought a (then new to the market) Alba personal cassette recorder with the sole intention of taping Bob Dylan's first concert for three years at the Isle Of Wight Festival. As for the Dave Keats recordings, that period of my life is pretty well documented, even though other people seem to have most of the tapes these days.

Probably one of my more direct influences at the time was a guy called Lyndon Pullin. He was a blues singer/songwriter who hung out at the same haunts as myself, despite the fact that by that time we were both beginning to branch out in different directions. The now sadly late Lyndon and I spent hours together writing new material and driving his father crazy while we were running through the initial arrangements of our latest musical offerings in his kitchen. Just about all of these sessions were kept for posterity and despite their almost unbearable quality they're still a good testament of where my influences lay at that point in time.

A further insight into my musical tastes of that period are to be found in the hands of two friends called John and Tina. Weekends were spent at their caravan after drunken nights at the local pub with Lyndon Pullin, John and Tina, and a whole bunch of other people who played some instrument or another. And with us being the pub's entertainment for the night, as the evening grew older, the drinks flowed faster, the singing got louder, and John taped it all, including the extended jam sessions back at the caravan which always carried on well into the early hours of the next morning.

Except for a few one off occasions it wasn't until 1995 that I produced any more recorded work. Of course I'd still been writing songs over the previous twenty years which had taken my tally to a thousand or more compositions, and I'd written three books, (The Other Side Of Kwai, Comeback, and South Across The Border) but for the better part, the only recordings from this period were audience tapes of live gigs.

In 1995, after having given copies of Comeback and Kwai to friends as Christmas presents the two previous years, I went back to my roots and produced twenty copies of Shaenea for the same reason. I was by this time beginning to fulfil my ambition of having real recording facilities, with access to MIDI backing, and in brief, being in the position to turn out professional quality demo's at the tip of a hat. Shaenea was recorded in the middle of this transition period. The vocals were done on an old Tascam Portastudio and the backing was completely generated on my computer.