Recording Finally Completed!

It’s been quite a journey… Sometime in 2019, I was enjoying a post-session pint in a pub just off London’s Baker St with my good friends and colleagues, cellist Justin Pearson and saxophonist Chris Caldwell. Our conversation turned to some settings of poetry by Gregory Warren Wilson that I had written for chamber choir and solo violin, and how some day I would like to record the music, solely for my own satisfaction rather than something that would be commercially released. Justin made the intriguing suggestion that, if I reversioned the piece for cello, he would be happy to record the music. A plan was hatched, and so the journey began. Jonathan Darbourne, who would direct the choir, assembled a ‘scratch’ choir of 16 voices, the recording venue was booked and producer and recording engineer were hired. And then along came COVID…

After a few thwarted attempts to bring everyone to together thanks to the 2nd, 3rd waves, etc of the disease, we finally convened at St George’s Headstone in March of 2022. At the first rehearsal, the choir hadn’t sung more than a couple of bars when I realised that I should do something more than merely keep the music to myself. And so a second plan was hatched… I’ve known Greg as a violinist as well as a fine poet and visual artist for a number of years but we both were very keen to develop a creative relationship and suddenly here was an opportunity for us to work together, setting his poems to music. 

And so, two years on from that initial recording with the wonderful choir and Justin, we now have more than an album’s worth of settings of Greg’s poems. It’s been a wonderful, rewarding and at times challenging experience writing and recording the music. But along the way, I’ve been lucky to work with some wonderful artists who have all been so generous with their time, enthusiasm and encouragement. So thank you to: Jonny Darbourne and the wonderful choir, Justin, Grace Davidson, Jean Kelly, James Gilchrist, Anna Tilbrook, Frances Gregory, The Delta Saxophone Quartet, Johnny Herford, Matthew Fletcher, producer Mike Ponder, engineers Adaq Khan and Martin Atkinson. We couldn’t have done it without you!