Shipwrecked came from a stream of consciousness and has remained unchanged, unedited since the day I dumped those raw thoughts onto the page. Spilt out under the shadow of the single biggest event in my life and staring at an horizon which for the first time had no clear destination only waves of uncertainty where pride, anger, sadness, hope and a multitude of questions waged war for control of my mind.
I kept the first verse as unaccompanied words to stay true to the original way in which I wrote them… a confused cathartic scribble then built (I hope) the intensity by multi tracking myself (many times) to effect the chord change (It almost sounds the way I hear it in my head). A vocal dam holding out until the strings and finally the riffology crash down and all that emotional baggage fell out onto the crumbling bridge into the water.
This song was recorded at in the beautiful seclusion of Chapel studios in Lincolnshire. I had a strong feeling, almost an internal demand that a full band was needed for this track and so very appropriately due to the lyrical content I enlisted my former band mates Alan Williamson and Mark Gibson to actualise the rhythm section. This felt really special to be back in the studio with them again, a real treasured moment.
Some credits and details. All music and lyrics written and performed by Steven Battelle Produced by Steven Battelle & Dan Weller at Chapel studios Studio assistant Luke Farnell Super special guest musicians Alan Williamson and Mark Gibson Harmony vocals recorded with Rich Collins at Snug Studio Mastered by Dick Beetham Photography Rob Baker Ashton
Created some beautiful songs with a bunch of new friends in Nashville and in Nashville itself I’ve found a new place that really feels like a songwriters home – excited to return soon! Brief stop off in New York, always fills me with a unique energy and is on the small list of places I could really see myself residing at some point.
Landed in the U.K and walked directly into the peoples vote mark around parliament, right back in to the thick of vile U.K politics and then balanced that with a visit to the Queen pop up shop and then witnessed one of my favourite bands playing at the Barbican. Mew Frengers played in order was something amazing to behold, what a band! Check them out f you haven’t before. They actually impacted myself and Mark from LostAlone a lot in the early days of our band.
So seven days in LA, three weeks in Nashville and a day in NYC come to an end, many songs were born and are now being nurtured into a state the world can hear them.
Okay time to play a lot of vinyl (I’ve missed y record player) and then get right back into it all! New solo song from my second record out next week 🙂 Steven
Another week is almost gone here in Nashville and its been non stop evolution of writing and friendship forming, an enchantment of riches and such a pleasure to be a part of.
I’ll always write my own songs in solitary, by myself and in open seclusion but am now fully enjoying bringing my brain to the melodic dinning table of an other artists meal, takes me to places I’ve never been before yet feels familiar.
Excited to get back to the UK next week and prepare to unleash upon you the second track from my new record. Describe it? Well its vocal only for 40 seconds and then its a downpour of RIFF!
Another few days writing here in Nashville then New York before home! 🙂
I had the absolute pleasure of playing this 1962 Fender strat yesterday, you could feel the history in every note. I put down a riff I’ve had for a while on a really cool country song and it sounded insane. Just heard it’s national album day back in the U.K. or is it worldwide? I dont know about you but for me every day is album day! I don’t know but with that in mind I’ve put 20% code off on Exit Brain Left blue vinyl second pressing and the CD version. Use the code NASHVILLE at checkout
Had a great two days with grammy winning writer Bart Allmand (owner of the 62 strat) and Sarah Ross owner of incredible voice making a huge stomping country meets T rex track! Now heading into two days with a new artist! This trip is relentless but its what I love to do, another 7 days of non stop writing ahead!
A whirlwind of a week so far, working with a different artist every day, embodying the spirit of the personality and hopefully elevating the vision, thats my mission on these writing sessions.
Name checking Hagrid (from Harry Potter for the uneducated) has been a highlight.
Last night after some meetings in town we went to the super tourist area, Broadway which was an assault on the senses, a band in literally ever bar window and believe me every building is a bar! Neon and craziness everywhere. Was cool to visit the FGL house for food, Dan Weller (US Dan not UK Dan) is a member of the HUGE band Florida Georgia Line and so EVERYTHING we ate and drank was free! Nice!
Ah I was so sad to hear that Montserrat Caballe’ passed away, her album with Freddie Mercury has been a constant companion for me, I LOVE it and she seemed such a lovely person in all the interviews I saw her in. I took some time to listen to that record today, sat out on the swinging chair that become my favourite place for some reflection here in Nashville.
Big writing session today, catch you all after that! 🙂
3.10.18, I know its the 4th but we have no internet at the house so I’m posting a day late from Starbucks. Nashville Waking up on my third day here in Nashville and its definitely been a case of love at first vibe. This place is ALL about the music and being all about the music myself its a perfect marriage. I had a crash course in Nashville on day one with my great friend Dan Weller (USA Dan – U.K Dan was still 38 thousand feet up at this point) taking me to Gibson who have kindly given us a couple of guitars to add to the arsenal (thanks Heather) and then over to Fender were I was lucky enough to try out a new 2019 guitar which is still in the late stages of development, I loved it! I then had a meeting with Universal Publishing Nashville which was less like a meeting and more a meeting of musical minds, brilliant guys all about the music.
I’m living, writing and recording out of a beautiful house which back in the day would’ve been purchased out of a catalogue. It has a great vibe and I’ve a Gibson Humming bird and Les Paul Gold top in my bedroom, just for company.
6.16am 30/10/18 Spent the past few days in the studio with my friend Ray making and talking about music. Its been such a perfect experience and something I know for sure we’re going to do more of. Yesterday I shunned Uber and decided to walk the 5 mile round trip from my hotel to Griffith Park Observatory. I love that place, not AS keen on the walk up in the intense heat but its worth it! The views are incredible. I also took in the Centered in the Universe show in the planetarium which was amazing and inspiring. Heard loads of new melodies just sitting looking of the city and the lyrics were plentiful.
Final day in LA today before I fly to Nashville meet up with Dan Weller UK and Dan Weller US for 19 days of co writing with country artists.
27.9.18 – In the dead silence of the night……again. Writing about the 26th. Yesterday I went for a meeting at Universal music publishing in Santa Monica. The dude at reception was indeed a dude and when he signed me in the familiar vocal harmony layering of my song No Leopards started playing throughout the lobby. This provoked in me a studied look of every face that walked past and particular note to any head nods or foot taps. I played out a multitude of scenarios in my mind wherein a group of people would walk out and proclaim “this music is awful” and how I’d have reacted if faced with such awkwardness….anyway thankfully that never happened and I was walked to the office of my co meeter to indeed have a meeting.
I then took a writing walk down to the Pacific ocean and gave the pier a quick up and down. Hovered on the sand for a while writing lyrics. Something about an ocean horizon that really provokes massive levels of contemplation.
I cant sleep so I’ve decided to start documenting the strange existence I now inhabit. I’ll do this as often as and in often as I can.
Traveling songwriter 5:09amHotel in Hollywood, Los Angeles – Alone.
I’ve been on the edge of preparing for this trip for three weeks and I’ve only been home for six weeks. When I say preparing I mean both writing a multitude of songs, really focusing on my lyrics as well as having my suitcase mapped out and planned perfectly.
You see this, this lifestyle I now lead of traveling, writing, being alone and being surrounded is a whole different species of animal to the beast I previously both created, wielded and rode. In my band it was an adventure, a team of both band and crew out on a mission, the objectives of which were clear. Also what I didn’t realise until this past year is that the band was a cloak underneath its various apparatus I felt safe, I don’t feel safe anymore which occasionally I like but many times, like just before traveling to the other side of the world I’m not as keen on.
I’ve become re obsessed with Queen’s 1974 record Sheer Heart Attack and I just had the realisation here listening to Roger Taylor singing Tenement Funster of how when Queen toured that record in 74/75 they couldn’t do what I’m doing now, connecting to the outside world, speaking to people back home and being constantly stimulated by movies, music and news – keeping the mind occupied. Maybe thats why they made such amazing music.
Okay this is it for the first post of this kind, I feel a little more tired having focused on the screen. Rather like a Wes Anderson movie these writings may not be linear so abruptly we come crashing to the end and hopefully to me crashing out in bedfitcher (bed)
I also just made a playlist to accompany the words.