Saturday, 29 July 2017

Track 5: Lucky Lampshade

Howdy Doody friend, step right up for part 5:


When I was naming the instrumental pieces way back in the frantically heady summer of 2015, I was coming up with titles based on letters of the alphabet I hadn't used, by the end of it I had one song for every letter (and a few letters that got greedy and had a couple of songs).

'Lucky Lampshade' was my L title. (more of a double L title really)

While I was going through the process of writing lyrics to go with these bad boys, most of the songs would get a name change, almost all of them in fact, but this song, it was born out of it's temporary title. I played with the lyric for a long time before settling in on 'strap on' as the method one would use to keep a lampshade safely on ones head, this was logic and basic science winning out over creative whimsy.

The single cover
The song was a structural oddity. Macey had wanted to move it around a bit, make it more conventional, but I asked him to persist with it's two part, one verse, one chorus structure, to make it different from the other songs. What came out the other end was amazing, Macey built a whirlwind, layering on elements slowly and methodically until a beautiful mess of sound has you in it's clutches (a far cry from the plinky plonky nonsense I had originally given him).

I didn't know if Lucky Lampshade was ever really going to work, but after it's Macey facelift (or Macelift), I think it might be my favourite song on the album, which is a true testament to the production skills of Treeman himself.

We played this in the rehearsal sessions, in fact, we played it differently every time. We had a swing jazz version, punk rock version, dub version, country pop version, you name it, we probably tried it once. I don't know it this influenced how the recording turned out, but it was always a highlight of the live sessions.

As this was the second single, it needed a special video to go with it. Abi and I spent a long time discussing ideas that would utilise light, since the song was about lamps just as much as it was about shades and their potential luck bringing qualities. We had loads of little finger lights, and rope lights, flashing crystal maze bulbs (as used in Given Half a Dance video), light up balloons, UV paint etc.
Negative version of the single cover.

So we tried out a bunch of ideas, and quickly discovered that the UV paint stuff in complete darkness with just a UV bulb, looked freaking sick on a stick. It looked so good on its own that we ditched all our over light based ideas and went full UV. We painted ourselves all UV (well, Abi painted us both actually, I merely sat and got painted), and we painted up some lampshades we had purchased. We shot the video over two evenings using two UV bulbs and a whole load of UV paint.

This song managed to get a little bit of radio play, which was nice.

Once 'Lucky Lampshade' was out, it was decided that this whole project would become an album. Nick had returned from travelling around the world, so the Cosmic Bos live band rehearsal sessions came to an end, and I joined the 'old' band as a synth player and backing vocalist.

A still from the video shoot.
Macey and Nick have been working together for a long time, and in 2013, with Charlie Gibbs on drums and James Finburg on Bass, they had released their debut album 'Something in the Water' - they were known as 'Jipsy Magic'. James left the band the following year and the guys recruited the amazing Paul Bradley on Bass. Before Nick went travelling the guys had been working on a bunch of new material, on Nicks return, with the addition of beardy old me, a new identity for 'Jipsy Magic' was born... META-CASSETTE

While rehearsing Cosmic Bos I had gotten the opportunity to play with these amazing musicians that I admired, I have been an avid fan of 'Jipsy Magic', and I had always hoped that one day I would get to be part of it, it was, and still is, exciting and special getting to make music with such talented individuals. Bos shifted gears back to being an electronica project, but it had been infused with the live musical energies that only a band can give.

Lucky Lampshade made it to the acoustic recording sessions, it's just two chords back and forth so not the hardest song in the world (for any musicheads out there, it's Dm and G)

After such a big epic track, the album needed to calm down a bit, so we went Pondering...

Peace and infinite love

Andy Jackson (Cosmic Bos)

Me all UV painted up for the video shoot.
Here are the '7 Billion' album links if you were out looking for them:

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