Well, we finally got the new Blue Horizon CD in our hands last night in the town of Reichenbach, Germany where it was delivered, hot off the presses, to a venue we were playing, called Die Halle.
The packaging is everything we hoped for, being very much a homespun thing these days. In other words, despite having a great new label behind us, Solid Rockhouse Records, we oversaw the whole production. Gotta tell you; It’s blue - very blue and I for one love it. There’s a vibe about the whole thing, very much in tune with the music itself. The whole entity came together as an album - a recording of a moment in time, much like some productions I personally worked on, way back in the 1970s.
This one is the 23rd or 24th studio release by Wishbone Ash. I lose track. Perhaps others can confirm the total number of releases over the years. I did notice a couple of omissions in the credits; Mike Pierra has been of great assistance to me in terms of overseeing my on stage and studio effects, through his Analogman products - apologies mate! I love what you do! And......very sorry, though it was no-one’s direct fault, we failed to credit the Mudmeister on his debut as a lead vocalist on the song Mary Jane. I guess some of you diehards will notice his laconic style on this one, backed up by yours truly. That recording was a fun ride which in point of fact, Joe featured earlier in a dedicated video clip somewhere on this site.
Anyway, the big story for UK fans and others, I’m guessing, is that we will expedite a delivery direct from Germany, to Guy Roberts so that you ravenous hordes may get a jump on the almighty Amazon and get your hands on a copy (or several), by ordering directly with him. He writes:
"Blue Horizon the new album from Wishbone Ash is now available 2 weeks before the official release date.
Copies of the new CD are on route from Germany to Ash HQ for immediate dispatch.
This superb album features excellent songs interspersed with subtle melodies and powerhouse twin lead guitar playing. Tracks are: Take it Back, Deep Blues, Strange (How Things Come Back Around), Being One, Way Down South, Tally Ho, Mary Jane, American Century, Blue Horizon, All there is to Say.
Log into the store on www.wishboneash.com to order your copy today."
(You’ll see his post in the Ashtalk section of our forum and Guy can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)
We had three attempts at mastering this baby before we were totally satisfied, and I’m pleased to confirm for vinyl freaks, it’ll also be available in that format too.
Currently, the band and crew are holed up in the Althoff Hotel am Schlossgarten in downtown Stuttgart for two glorious days off. For me, it feels like the first real break in over 3 months of intense work and we spent some quality time doing what all good Germans do on a Sunday, we had coffee and cake and walked for two hours browsing the shops and stores which were thankfully closed on the walking streets, unlike in other countries where no distinction is now made between Sunday and any other day. This really is a remarkably civilized country. I think I saw one police vehicle - the first I’ve noticed in days, although there were a few Eastern European beggars hobbling around, looking suspiciously like actors, with shawls and feet strategically hanging out of shoes, gnarly walking sticks in hand. I have to say, the musicians on the street got my money today, because they at least put some work and effort into panhandling - but then, maybe I’m biased.
Finally, I must tell you, it just came to my attention that we recently appeared on Norddeutsche Rundfunk in a 6 minute feature about our dear friends at the fabulous Worpswede Music Hall in Northern Germany and the esteemed venue's 25th anniversary. If you ever get the chance to visit the town of Worpswede, an artist colony originally, you won’t be disappointed. There are still great artist studios, together with galleries for the artistically minded. The Music Hall, an old, listed, medieval barn with a thatched roof, was the brainchild of HD a wonderful guy seen here wearing a hat in this photo alongside his old buddy Horst Fascher, who incidentally, was THE man who booked the Beatles into the Star Club back in 1963. HD, sadly no longer with us, championed music in this area with his love of rock and blues and showed his respect for both the artists and the audience by developing this wonderful venue which has finally been acknowledged in the media. A lot of so-called more pro venues could take a leaf out of his book. He created something with a lot of heart which is a real boon to the community. Check out the clip here.