My guest this month on my Music Discovery monthly show on Soho Radio is the wondrous composer, singer and presenter Hannah Peel.
In this feature interview we hear tracks from her recent album Fir Wave, about its interesting back story, her soundtrack work for Game of Thrones and the many projects she's been working on during the pandemic lockdowns.
The rest of the show features new music from the likes of Mdou Moctar, Toada, Hiatus Kaiyote, Yarni, Jayda G, Penya, Sofia Kourtesis and more.
Let’s hear from Nils Frahm, the German virtuoso pianist and composer.
For the recent Piano Day at the end of March he announced and released a surprise album titled Graz, which it turns out was his debut studio album that was never released.
It’s a raw, snapshot of his work before the huge international success that would follow in the past decade, extensive concert hall tours around the globe in some of the world’s most historic venues.
The album was recorded over three days at Mumuth, the University of Music and Performing Arts Graz in Austria.
Pieces like Hammers and Went Missing evolved into a key part of his live set and later appeared on his breakthrough Spaces record in 2013, which was a collage of field recordings from concerts.
His playing has evolved since 2009 with Frahm incorporating more of a jazz influence with the classical and electronic textures. This fusion and his live shows - complete with highly entertaining chat in between the pieces - has made him somewhat of a household name in the contemporary classical realm.
I spoke to Nils Frahm from Berlin for BBC Radio 6 Music to find out more about the making of Graz and why he decided it was time to put this out into the world…
Here we have our next episode of Super Women Series 1 and the super human in question is the very talented British jewellery designer Tessa Metcalfe.
The team visited Tessa at her Clerkenwell boutique and workshop one very warm heatwave day a couple of years ago to see where she crafts her unique pigeon-inspired designs and bespoke pieces.
It was such an enjoyable time hanging out with Tessa and her team and a real look into just what goes into building a business like hers.
SW co-founder and Presenter - Georgie Rogers
SW co-founder and Director - Alice Smith
Filming by Elizabeth Gbejuade + Rosie Lonsdale
Edited by Camille Raoult
Equipment Sponsor - Catalyst Cameras
With very special thanks to...
Gus Harvey - Durga (Instrumental)
Medium Love - Magic Back
Medium Love - Light Gets In
Teem Dreem - Light Touch
Julia-Sophie - Breathe
Super Women is a short-form documentary platform dedicated to telling kickass stories of kickass women on film, while furthering opportunities for female film-makers. Formed by two creatives, BBC broadcaster Georgie Rogers and director Alice Smith, each film in the series highlights what it took for women to blaze the trail across music, motorsports, business, politics, tech and culture to realise their dreams in the most extraordinary ways.
It was a big Music Discovery show for you from home in Lockdown, aired on Soho Radio in my monthly slot.
I had Peruvian producer Sofia Kourtesis as my special guest ahead of her new EP release on Technicolour records, an imprint of Ninja Tune. We spoke all about her new EP Fresia Magdalena (Technicolour/Ninja Tune), gathering field recordings in Panama, developing her skills as a composer with a Peruvian chorus, family and living in Berlin - she tells a howler of a story about seeing her dentist in Berghain. She's incredible!
There was also TWO WORLD EXCLUSIVE first plays of brand new music from South-East London band Phobophobes and Oxford-based British/French producer and singer Julia-Sophie.
All sorts of fresh cuts from the likes of Mdou Moctar, Leon Vynehall, Alfa Mist, Teena Marie, India Jordan, Nils Frahm, Hannah Peel, FYI Chris and many more.
Hope you like! Watch the interview or listen to the show here...
My latest Music Discovery show on Foundation FM featured special guest Budakid, a Berlin-based producer from the Netherlands who has two new releases coming out in March 2021 on Exploited Records.
The programme also included new electronic beats from India Jordan, Octo Octa, Prequel, Sofia Kourtesis, Jacana People, Jayda G, Mark De Clive Lowe, William Stuckey, ANNA, Fimber Bravo and Joe Goddard working with Franky Rizardo.
Here is my latest Music Discovery show on Soho Radio featuring VERY special guests Squid. Here is our chat over Zoom and the show via Mixcloud.
I spoke to drummer and singer Ollie Judge all about their much-anticipated debut album Bright Green Field that's coming out on May 7th on Warp Records, working with the acclaimed Dan Carey (his dog Feta), plus family holidays to End Of The Road Festival.
Hope you enjoy it!
Also lots of brand new music from the likes of Maja Lena, UNKLE, Poppy Ajudha, Flock of Dimes, Nubya Garcia + Mark de Clive-Lowe, Tune-Yards, Lambert, Anchorsong, Cioz, Smerz,vLau.ra Sofia Kourtesis, Man Power, Autechre, Puma Blue and more.
In September 2020 we had State of the Independents day on BBC Radio 6 Music. It was a day devoted to doing a health check on the UK’s independent music sector, looking at the challenges, opportunities and responses of the sector caused by the global pandemic lockdown. There’s no doubt - club culture has taken a MASSIVE hit. When lockdown happened DJs, producers and platforms all over the world were able to move sets online. Whether they were for long-established platforms like Boiler Room, record label live streams, personal DJ pages, one off events like DJ EZ’s 24 hour set or raising money for foodbank charities as was the case with Live For Love, everyone was at it! In some areas of Europe like Barcelona in Spain- clubs reopened at the end of June but shut again a few weeks later as the virus surged.
Here in the UK clubbing remained off the cards - but in a short space of time post lockdown some venues were able to diversify in a bid to stay open hosting seated, socially distanced events. Meanwhile globally - virtual clubbing boomed.
I have been exploring how the scene has been adapting and what needs to be done to safeguard club culture for the months ahead…
It's always great catching up with Welsh electronic artist Kelly Lee Owens.
Her second studio album Inner Song was released in August 2020 to largely four and five star reviews from several major publications.
Kelly wrote and recorded the album after what she considered to be the hardest three years of her life. Ahead of its release she spoke to us about that time and how it was permeated with loss and grief with the death of her grandmother Jeanette, who she was very close to.
As well as a cover of Radiohead’s Weird Fishes/Arpeggi, it features vocals from The Velvet Underground’s John Cale on the track Corner of My Sky - with the album already starting to appear on some albums of the year lists by the likes of Uncut and Rough Trade where it’s number 28 in its top 100.
I checked in with her for BBC 6 Music and she revealed she’s been busy this year with her first foray into soundtrack work...
Let’s hear from Squid.
They released two EPs and several critically acclaimed singles before signing to Warp Records for the most recent track Sludge and a debut album.
The band had big plans for touring in Europe throughout 2020 after they were a big hit at a number of festivals last summer and our very own 6 Music festival in February. Tour plans were of course thwarted by the pandemic but things have by no means ground to a halt for the band.
I spoke to Louis Borlase from Squid for BBC Radio 6 Music recently to get an update on where they are at with a much anticipated debut record….