Blog #7


i’m communicating to you, live from the Planet Eigg, in these early, bleary eyed days of 2016.  Do you receive me *cough* loud and *splutter* clear? Good  

2015 was a pretty intense year.  In October, I became a father to a small boy called Arlo.  Freaky, eh?  Freakier still, it was pretty much exactly a year ago that I found out that this was going to happen.  Yeah - i knew all along!  The entire year!  Thing is, despite this more-than-adequate preparation time,  and even taking into account his subsequent late arrival, when he finally emerged quite literally drenched in blood and shit, I was in shock.  Now he’s 13 weeks old, and i’m still in shock. Although we’ve cleaned off a bit of the blood and some of the shit. I can’t quite believe it’s all happened.

But, it has happened. It has.  And, 12 months ago, when I knew it was going to be happening, I set myself 3 tasks to accomplish by the end of 2015.


1. Pass my driving test;

B. Move into our new home on Eigg; and

3. Finish a new album


And - i’m pleased to tell you - I’m sat, here, in my new luxury Bullseye winner prize caravan, with a clean driving license, AND an even cleaner, shiny, sparkly new album.  BOOOOOOOM. AWWOOOOGAAAA. YAAAAASSS.

Well, it’s quite shiny.  We’re just sorting out the final mixes, and it’ll need to be mastered after that.   But THEN, THEN it will be shiny.  And new.   I’m not going to talk about it too much just now, because I’ll get too excited, and spoil the shiny newness of it.  Plus, i need to work out how to play the thing, live.   

Thankfully, i’m off on tour with some nice men - James Yorkston & Withered Hand - throughout January, which will give me a chance to work out how to perform some of the new songs.   This will be a fun tour - it’s like the one I did with Sweet Baboo, where we each take it in turns to perform songs.  I’ve done loads of touring like this, with James.  I hope our in-jokes won’t scare Withered Hand off.  The shows are all taking place in Ireland and Scotland, and you can check out all the tour dates in the gig section of my webshite.  We’ve released some session videos, too - where we’re each playing together, and dressed up like an amateur dramatic version of Last Of The Summer Wine.   I’m Compo, obviously.  Dan is Foggy.  And James is Nora Batty.  I’ve attached the vids in the blog.

Soooo, aye.  I’ve got this tour in January, and then i’m back home to look after Arlo and put together a plan for the album.  I need to ask myself some questions. Things like … ‘what song should be put out first?’, ‘what should the artwork look like?’, and ‘am i going to fit into these tight leather trousers?’.    Questions like like that.

Speaking of questions, a LOT of people have been asking me about whether or not there’ll be another Howlin’ Fling on Eigg this summer.  Pretty much every day they’ve been asking that.  For the past 3 months.  We’ll be making a proper announcement about it on the Lost Map website in the next week or so.  What i CAN tell you is that there is definitely going to be something happening this summer.   In fact, we’ve been putting together a plan for the next few summers.  Becoming a dad has meant that i’ve had to try and make more effective use of my time.  I’m sure you know already, but putting on a good, memorable event, is really, really important to me - I wanna make sure we do it right.

Before I go, I want to tell you that we’ve a load of great stuff coming up on Lost Map - including the release of an EP by a new signing, Victoria Hume.  Her Closing EP is mesmeric - really intimate songs on piano and guitar, with some incredible cyclical arrangements.  Perfect for cycling.  Victoria’s voice and lyrical style alone is enough to draw you in.  We’ve got Tuff Love’s album coming out at the end of this month, too - a compilation of their 3 EPs, entitled Resort.  It’s like ABBA Gold for indie fans, every song a belter.  For me, they’re the best band on the planet - just so many great tunes. They’re on tour in February, and I implore you to see them, so that you can fall in love with them, and we can start a fanclub together.

Christ, i’ve started lactating … so i better go.  Come and see me on tour this month, look into my tired, tired eyes, and give me a hug.