During 2011 I’ve picked up quite a lot of new music from www.bandcamp.com, a fantastic site for independent musicians to sell/promote/give away their music. I’ve also got my own page there at www.andylong.bandcamp.com, from where you can pick up my solo bass stuff, my album with the Tim Crahart Blues Band and my old rock monsters album by 3rd Day Rising.
Through Bandcamp (and Twitter) I’ve made some great new friends and met some astonishing musicians. So here, in no particular order, are ten of my favourite recordings from 2011. Many of these are Pay What You Want downloads, so you could potentially pick up a lot of new music here for next to nothing.
1. ‘Travelling Time” by Everyman Of Parts. The long awaited solo album by a brilliant bassist, Andrew Sheron
2. “11 Reasons Why 3 Is Greater Than Everything” by Steve Lawson. Speaking of brilliant bassists, Steve is the top of the tree.
3. “Beautifully Undone” by Lobelia. Meanwhile Mrs Steve has released this gorgeous collection of cover versions of less-well known songs
4. “Relic” by Matt Stevens. Matt’s albums get better and better, he came to play a gig for us this year, loved it.
5. “If” by Alun Vaughan. a live set of improvised bass, showing what a talented bloke old Dr. Evil really is.
6. “_ism” by Jeff Schmidt. dark ambience from bassist and ‘sound manipulator’ Jeff.
7. “Baby Steps” by Rhys Anslow. The hairy one just managed to pip me to the post with the release of his solo album.
8. “Disarm:Remixed” by She Makes War & Friends. An collection of remixes of the original album, raising funds for the homeless shelter Crisis, why not get the original album too?
9. “The Quiet In The Land” by Calamateur. Just found this one today, so looking forward to hearing it. Previous releases have been wonderful.
10. “The Knowledge Of Things To Come” by Simon Little. More chillingly beautiful solo tunes from the Divine Comedy/Duke Special bassist.
Please check out some of these amazing albums and start your 2012 off well.