Just keep walking…and more adventures in music.
So as you have most likely gathered if you follow my music or blog. I’ve been keeping busy with gigs, my most popular blog to date and yes walking. A large amount of walking. Now don’t get me wrong I’m far from complaining.
I love walking and have been ramping up the distance’s I’m getting in. It’s odd to say that anything under 7 or 8 miles feels like not enough and I’m doing that now a few times a week.
I’ve found a couple of great walks right on my doorstep that take in the River Yare and the Wherrymans Way (a 36 miles route taking you on foot from the city centre to Great Yarmouth) that winds it way Yarmouth bound towards the North Sea. It also takes in the world famous Norfolk Broads. A national park even Bowie found worthy of giving a mention.
It’s an interesting landscape that surrounds the river’s banks. Much of it land drained by net works of drainage ditches and water pumps. Many of which take the form of now defunct wind pumps powered by towering windmill’s. The ghosts of which can be seen now boldly on the horizon line minus the all important sails and in some cases roofs.
One such trek took me to a small village Hardley and it’s staithe. A circular walk of approximately 8 miles. It took in woodland, quiet country lanes and low lying marshland and the aforementioned river always dominant.
Towards the end of the route a large and looming building of cathedral like proportions dominates the landscape on the other side of the water flanking the banks with cylindrical towers and tall chimneys. It’s the British Sugar Factory at Cantley. Likelihood is if you enjoy your tea sugared it’s probably from here. In the sunlight though this time it gleamed like a silver version of the emerald sight that greeted Dorothy in the wizard of Oz. Ok maybe that’s just my imagination but you get what I mean. An austere but at times arresting sight on such a green and pleasant landscape.
Above me I am greeted by a lone Marsh Harrier taking advantage of the warmer air circling higher and higher into the atmosphere.
Further to my right a silhouette of a rare but fully clad and fully sailed windmill stood against the hazy blue spring sky. To my surprise, as I closed in on this other grand building along the roadbeds and river banks. This I shortly find out is Hardley Mill. A fully restored wind pump you can get inside and see just how it functions and has clearly been lovingly restored.
It really is a beautiful area with big skies and you can almost feel the history. Imagine the Wherries as they made their way back and forth between the city and the coast the trade and supplies way before roads and lorries were so relied upon.
Music wise I haven’t been lazy. Firstly there’s a booking I’m excited to announce at Epic Studios here in Norwich on November 23rd I’ll be playing a show with not only one of my all time favourite songwriters but someone I’m happy to call a friend. Ian Prowse. Ian hails from Liverpool. Ellesmere Port to be precise and was frontman and principal songwriter with early 90’s band Pele he’s now solo artist and frontman of the equally brilliant Amsterdam.
He’s famous amongst other things like being dubbed the Scouse Springsteen for penning the song “Does this train stop on Merseyside?” A song that John Peel said never failed to make him cry.
Tickets are already on sale for this a solo show from Ian. Get tickets here:
It’s part of Ian’s 25 Years of Fireworks. Pele’s debut album tour.
Something else that’s finally taken shape is the ‘Fan Clip’ video for my track “Let’s Jump Ship”.
Last year I asked people to film a clip of themselves sing or dancing or indeed as you’ll see anything we could put together as a video. They didn’t disappoint. Its an eclectic mix pf phone clips, camcorder footage and in some cases even more sophisticated clips and not to mention the costumes and crazy, beautifully mad ideas.
There’s even a couple of cameos from Erica Nockalls violinist on the track and The Wonder Stuff violinist to comedian Mark Watson larking about on a phone clip! Don’t let me keep you see yourself. I’m blown away and hope you enjoy it too.
And if this wasn’t enough there’s still much planning and preparation to be yet done for The Endless Coastline Charity Tour. I’ve even been checking the accommodation for Stage 1 is all ready. One man and a tent, no swearing and up in just 9 minutes. Success!