I have always been a passionate, obsessive music fan – long before I was even composing my own pieces. Two visionary artists who have had the biggest impact on me musically, creatively and even on what you might call a life-changing basis, are Peter Gabriel and David Bowie.
There had always been this need – niggling away at me – to write something about one or both of these artists. This first came about in 2004 when I made a fan site dedicated to Peter Gabriel’s work. However in recent years, and the advent of self-publishing it was soon possible for me to think more about writing projects and the ability to publish them as ebooks.
This first came about when Bowie passed away, and writing up my thoughts and memories on discovering and enjoying his music, was my way of processing the sad loss of such an iconic and inspirational artist. This started off as a personal piece of writing; then a couple of blog posts – before I knew it, it was an ebook.
Sound, Vision, Inspiration: How the music of David Bowie became a soundtrack to life was published in November 2016. The fantastic cover photograph is copyright Richard Bellia, and shows Bowie on stage during the Outside tour of 1995-6.
Written throughout 2017, my next ebook was Growing Up with the music of Peter Gabriel. I followed a similar format and chronology to the Bowie book, least of all because I discovered the work of both artists around the same time, in my teenage years. Whereas Growing Up… also charts my discovery of the artist’s work but also how it impacted on my own life, work and career choices. This book also contains several special illustrations, as seen in the Synaesthesia Art pages of this site.
Growing Up With the Music of Peter Gabriel was published in December 2017. The cover features my own photograph of Gabriel, pictured at Sheffield Arena on the Back to Front tour in 2014.
These are two deliberately short, easy to digest books. They reflect on the music scene at the time and also look back at how we enjoyed and discovered music in the pre-Internet era. They’re also quite personal, but hopefully also of interest to anybody who admires the same artists or relates to the kind of music and the inspiration we get from the music that forms the soundtracks to our lives.