Hello and Welcome!
Please kick the fire into a blaze, pour yourself a glass of your favourite beverage, pull up a comfy chair and have a look at what's going on in the world of singer songwriter, guitarist and fiddle player Patrick Evans. You'll find the latest gigs, news on new songs and recordings and links to events of interest as well as to my musical friends. Please visit my blog where I'll be posting thoughts on song writing, guitar playing and fiddle playing as well as tips on how I go about it. I'll also be passing on info on artists and recordings I think may be of interest.
So, sit back and enjoy! 

 

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Patrick's Blog

House Of Angles 

I've just uploaded the Fiddlestix recording of my song "House Of Angles" onto my history page as part of the EP "Another Angle".
The first thing that leaps out to me is the huge voice of Colin James on backing vocals. Such a feature of that band. We recorded the EP in Paul McMahon's shed on his Fostex 8 track recorder. Tom Bauer did all the engineering and put in countless hours for us. I remember how much fun we had doing these sessions and I'm not sure how many of them were sober but that's what it was like in those days. I recorded this from a cassette tape my mother had. I've lost the records I had and have nothing to play them on anyway but I remember the night we opened the boxes with our shiny new EPs. We thought we were on the way!
I kind of like the tape hiss on this, it's as if the song was coming straight out of 1988 when we made it.
They were great days and my only regret is that we let insignificant personal issues and jealousies prevent us from pushing forward and realizing our dreams. If you listen to the track you can hear the excitement and enthusiasm in the music. But as John Lennon said "life is what happens while you're busy making other plans". 

Still In Love with You 

I've just uploaded a new song "Still In Love With You" which was recorded live at my good friend Gordon's studio. You'll find it on the Music page. It has the odd click from the fingers hitting the scratchplate but that's what live music is all about I reckon.The song's origins are personal but some lyrical content was changed as it went through the refining process to make it more accessible. In general it's about the emotional journey you go through when your partner or someone you love gives you some bad news or news you didn't see coming. The only thing you do know is that you still love that person.
We're saying goodbye to my dear old Dad at his funeral tomorrow. I certainly know I still love him so I dedicate this song to Dad. 

The Evans Brothers 

One of life's great pleasures is making music with family. I grew up singing in choirs with my Dad and more recently I've been helping my 7 year old daughter, Sofia, with her violin lessons. We play together pretty much every night. I always look forward to it and she sometimes thinks it's ok.... but, we are building a bond that will last a lifetime.
My brother Richard and I have written a few songs together, including a very special song to me "Black Saturday". This song was written to mark the first anniversary of the terrible fires that claimed Marysville. My Dad and his wife Jill had a lovely house up there that was destroyed by the fires. As luck would have it I had asked them to dinner that day a week or so before so they stayed with us while the disaster unfolded on the radio. I shudder to think what might have happened had they still been there when the fire swept through. A year later we gathered as a family (and with many of the friends Dad and Jill had made in Marysville) in the big shed on the Marysville  property to remember the day, those who were no longer with us, and to celebrate life. The shed (which Dad insisted on calling a workshop) had miraculously survived the fire and Dad took this as an enormous positive in the sad landscape that beautiful Marysville had become. Richard and I sang this song at that gathering.
Sadly my Dad, Ray Evans, passed away this week (June 17) having lived a full and happy life and surrounded by those he loved. I sang  "Black Saturday" last night for the first time since Dad's passing. It was tough but we got through it.
Richard is a proper writer. He has published several books and I am inspired by the depth and skill of his writing. It is another one of life's pleasures to be able to collaborate with him on songs. Usually he writes the lyrics and I find the music then we will massage the words if they need to "flow" a bit better to the music.
Richard has also been writing a blog on his thoughts on Bob Dylan songs which I think is quite brilliant. The link is right here. I urge anybody interested in songwriting or Bob Dylan or who enjoys good writing to check it out.
Richard Evans - My Year With Bob Dylan
I will have a streaming version of Black Saturday up shortly as well as some (pretty rough but honest) clips of the celebration in the Marysville shed.
Cheers
Patrick Evans   

Songwriting Groups 

I have had some great messages about song writing and how to develop / go further with this wonderful art form. 
Im a member of Suzette Herft's song writing circle which has been absolutely brilliant for my development. There is nothing like having your song torn apart by people you trust and respect to make you try that little bit harder! It can be a bit confronting but, given that the idea of a song is to try and connect with people, to try and bring them into the vision or mood you are trying to create,  it makes sense to test the song out in a small, supportive group before subjecting it to the scrutiny of the "wide world" (to quote Ratty from the Wind in the Willows" "beyond the wild woods is the wide world and that concerns neither you or me. We shall never talk of this again"). Oooops, how did I get here? One of the main criticisms I get for early versions of my songs is "I'm a bit confused, who is actually speaking and what is this song about?" I think this blog falls into this category. So to cut to the chase - join a songwriting group, or if you can't find one, create one. 

What is Folk Music? 

Just lately I've been involved in a few discussions over folk music, what it is and where it comes from. 
Of course, the next question is whether I'm "folk music" and the inevitable arguments that follow.
There have also been some discussions on "What The Folk" on PBS lately so I thought it time to put in my 10 cents worth.
I think the argument is a lot clearer when discussing "traditional music". Traditional music has a cultural base and has defined styles and techniques that have developed over many years. New songs and tunes are added to the repertoire gradually but they usually fit the forms and styles of the tradition. Various fiddle traditions are a great example of this. New instruments are slowly absorbed in the tradition but by and large the music remains as it was and the development of styles can be fairly readily traced back to the roots of the tradition. But is traditional music folk and is folk music traditional?
Modern folk music is a lot harder too pin down and it's very hard to explain what this is to those who don't know. Is it Pete Seeger in the late 50s? Is it Steeleye Span circa 1974? Is it Shooglenifty with their grooves? Is it John Denver, Cat Stevens, Joan Baez, Tracy Chapman etc etc? 
My answer is a resounding YES! to the lot of it. I think we should stop worrying about what folk music is and just enjoy it, play it and share it.
Life is too short to worry about categories and definitions. Just get playing!
 

Upcoming Shows

"This Old Guitar" 1983 Maton CW80

"This Old Guitar" 1983 Maton CW80

Awards

News Flash! What an honour to have been awarded first place in the Peninsula Folk Clubs Songwriting competition for 2015!
It's great to have improved on last year with my new song "Midnight Valentino". I will have a video up of the song soon...
Once again thanks to everybody at the Peninsula Folk Club....




I'm delighted to have been awarded second place in the Peninsula Folk Club Songwriting Competition on Sunday, June 1st. It was a great night with 20 great entries so I feel very privileged to have done so well. My entry was a song called "This Old Guitar" written on (and about) my trusty old 1983 Maton CW80. Thanks to everybody at the Peninsula Folk Club and hats off to all the contestants. Great work everybody!