Back in the summer, we were approached to take part in a very exciting project – to record the real strings strings for a song by composer Leigh Haggerwood. Leigh (who has recently become known as his Victorian alter ego ‘Travis Shenanigans’!) had the idea of writing a proper Christmas song, with festive lyrics and a real ‘feel good’ melody and as soon as we heard it, the players on the session realised it was extremely catchy and likely to do very well indeed. In these days of large record company promotions, the X factor and various facebook campaigns to download silence or novelty songs, it’s a refreshing change to hear a proper old fashioned Christmas Song that actually makes you feel… well…. Christmassy! The song is called ‘My Favourite Time of Year’ by the Florin Street Band and is well worth a listen over Christmas. Because the project was entirely self funded without record company backing, it’s down to the general public to support it and get it into the Christmas charts. If initial response from everyone who has heard it so far is anything to go by, it should do really well as it is far more original than anything else released over Christmas.
The string parts were quickly notated and we went into Sarm Studios to record them in the same week as Leigh had gathered the English Chamber Choir and a whole host of other talented British musicians including James Ryan on drums to appear on the song.
By autumn, it was time to record the video which was filmed overnight at Blists Hill Victorian Town in Ironbridge Gorge and it was a real pleasure to appear in the film, playing a busking violinist in period costume – re-creating the violin solos and string parts that we had recorded back in August.
When I was at music college, I did quite a bit of busking to make ends meet, so although I’d never busked in a top hat before, I felt very at home in the role!
Today, the Florin Street Band website is now up and running and the video and song can be enjoyed online – the band also have a facebook page where people who like the song can keep up to date with all the latest news.