Last week I had the pleasure of hosting Jeremy Spencer and his lovely wife Dorothea at my home, we had got together to finally meet face to face after over a year of weekly chats and projects. We initially met after a chance conversation with my mum’s next door neighbour Valerie Yuill. She explained that she used to live next door to Jeremy many years ago. intrigued to hear more about his Hartlepool beginnings, I contacted Jeremy, he said hello via email and after a few more exchanges he telephone me. After a conversation of around an hour (more on our phone calls and their epic nature later) I thought, it’s like this I’ve known this fella all my life. We continued to chat and Jeremy kindly said he wanted to mess around with one of my tracks, I was blown away by the results, but still album thoughts and forming a band, where far from my thoughts. I was just keen to learn from such an experienced musician after all any guitarist who can impress Peter Green after one listen is worth taking advice from. We had another conversation in the summer that passed the hour mark and it was during this conversation that I explained to Jeremy I had just attended the funeral of a rather wonderful lady, Sister Dorothy of Maundy Relief in Accrington. After our call I thought no more of Jeremy’s suggestion to pen a song about her, well not more than ten minutes and a failed over keen attempt, that read rather like a poetical obituary with the odd flourish of woo and ahhh. I was surprised when Jeremy contacted me about three weeks later , we chatted and he said he had been working on a song that he thought would fit my Nun story. He sent it across and I listened, it was a strange feeling as I did as I almost immediately had the first verse in my head and 25 minutes later was trimming bits here and there to tidy up my attempt.
I sent this back to Jeremy and to me it was clear that there was rather a special connection with music and lyrics. Apart from one line where I made Dorothy sound like a Martin Luther King type crusader. Jeremy then said, hey I have this one too and you could try and put something to it and by the way what is your song about the chimney doing? We sent tracks visa versa and before we knew it were looking at almost an albums worth of material. I mentioned this to Jeremy on my return from the US, and three weeks later, last weekend was here.
The weekend was in itself rather magical, I was able to take Jeremy back to his home town for the first time in 50 years. It was a rather special occasion and very moving to see a lifetime of memories re awoken. We had a great time and on our return decided it would be the right thing to do to release an album.
Steetley is the project’s title and we are now well on the way with final mixes and trimming vocals.
I am very excited to be working on this as it is something really special and I hope when it arrives you feel the same.