News Archive 2004
> News Archive - 2004
16th December 2004
New Article: I recently
managed to find an old article, reviewing Brian's album Reputation,
from 1988. It was in Kerrang! a UK music magazine which tends to focus
more on the heavier rock side of the music business. I think it is a
good review and well worth a read, especially if you prefer Reputation.
Either click on the link here (go
to article) or go via the Articles link on the navigation area on
Seasons Greetings: It's
that time of year again. It comes around every year with alarming regularity
but I'm still not prepared for it. I hope Christmas and the New Year
go well for you and that Santa brings you and your loved ones health,
wealth and happiness.
25th November 2004
Brian on Video: I have
recently received a video file from a Brian Spence fan, of a large number
of musicians and singers, named The Projekt, performing a track called
"Hand in Hand" for German handicapped children. Amongst these
artist mainly German and Austrian is Brian Spence. He gets to sing a
line (just like the others but in English) for this worthy cause. The
video was sent to me by TC Gola of Hamburg who thinks it was around
1986 to 1988. If you want to see this video file feel free to download
it, but please remember that it is about 46MB so it is a B-I-G
file - approximately 10 times the size of a normal mp3 file and
will take a long time to download (1 hour plus) if you don't have broadband.
It is also slightly fuzzy in quality but, in my opinion, worth it. For
those of you who don't want to risk it for only a few seconds I have
included a couple of still that TC also supplied.
If you have any information about the event and if there
was a single released from it please let me know as TC has been looking
TC is also looking to see what else he has amongst his
vast collection of music memoriabilia that is of interest. In the meantime
I would like to thank him for bring this to my attention. As a thank
you why not visit his own web site which is for his own music band Tc
Gola & The Goalgetters at http://www.tcgola.de
13th November 2004
New Old Article: I have
placed a new article about Brian on the Articles page. It comes from
Sounds, a British weekly music newspaper cover dated 6th September 1986.
Brian had just released the single "Hear It From The Heart",
his first solo single and the album "Brothers" was also only
The article is typical piece of music journalism for the
time. Comparison with North American musicians abound. If you have any
articles on Brian Spence, either reviews, interviews or just mentioning
him why not let me know? You can read this article either by clicking
on this link
of by going through the articles link on the navigator section to the
25th October 2004
Web Site Updates: Within
the last couple of weeks I have been trying to update the Friends of
Brian page and then create links from the various other pages to it,
i.e. the Brothers page with it's list of thanks. Sometimes these are
easy to do, especially if they are musicians, sometimes this is difficult
(especially if only one name is given) as they are just literally friends.
14th October 2004
Guest Book: The guest
book has been up up running for sometime now, however, there are only
a few message there. Is this because there are only a few fans of Brian
out there or is it that they are all shy? Whilst you are read this why
don't you click on the guest book link and leave a quick message.
Videos: Does anyone
have any videos of Brian or Bilbo Baggins? I know Brian and Debbie do.
However, they are causous above letting me borrow they are they cost
a lot of money to produce (artists have to pay for videos themselves
- record companies only work on behalf of the artist).
I know there are vidoes for Hear It From The Heart, Reputation,
Come Back Home and Travellin' Man. Do you know of any more?
30th September 2004
Off Topic: Sue and I
have had a strange few weeks since I last updated the site. I received
a telephone call from someone (I will call him "Joe") who
wanted some information, but not about Brian Spence but about Don Henley
of the American country-rock group The Eagles. The latter is also one
of Sue and I's favourite artists but there are plenty of web sites covering
this artist so to receive a telephone call about Henley was a bit strange.
Even stranger was the question, "do you know about any Henley impersonators?"
Joe did not mean a tribute act but someone who was conning people into
believing they were someone who they were not.
As it happens we did know of someone who perform a concert
as Don Henley around 1990 in Chislehurst, South-East London. We sent
the article about this person and Joe said that the description in the
article fitted perfectly someone he had recently met who said he was
Don Henley. As the real deal was playing a series of concerts in Texas
at the same time it was unlikely that Joe's Henley was the genuine thing.
Sue and I arranged to met Joe and spent the evening talking
about "his" Henley and the stories he was telling. All very
amusing but also very weird at the same time.
On Topic: Sue and I
also spent some time with Brian and Debbie. As this was non-music related
and was more a getting to know each other session there is nothing that
I will report about on this web site. However, Debbie did tell me that
"The Wedding" the song by The Wish was true and that she found
it very therapeutic, and difficult, to write. If you are unsure about
the lyrics why noy pop over to http://www.the-wish.com/lyrics/thewedding.htm
to read the words.
4th September 2004
Another longer break between updates than I had planned.
I have had a two week break from work to do some work on the home plus
other stuff, like catching up on my day job, has prevented me from updating
the site as often as I would like.
Interview: Part 8 and
9 is now accessible. This will finish off the interview started some
Break FM: Guess who
forgot to listen for the broadcast of Platform? Three guesses and the
first two don't count. If anyone did record it could they let me know?
31st July 2004
After a period of rebuilding my home PC, due to software
glitches, I'm back. I did lose some data (mainly passwords to various
web sites, etc.) which is stupid as I normally back everything up. However,
the main software glitch was with my back up device.
Interviews: Part 7 can
now be downloaded. In this part Brian talks about performing covers
when he first moved to London, after the break up of Bilbo - something
he still does.
Break FM: Just a reminder
that Break FM will be broadcasting the first of their Platform recordings
- see below for more info. If you have not read this until after the
event, shame on you. Should have signed up to the SpenceMusic mailing
Ricky Stevens: I have
copied Ricky's singles from vinyl, however, I need to clean them up
a bit then convert them into mp3 files. Perhaps next week.
Holidays: I'm on leave
from work in a week's time and I hope to be able to, amongst other things,
go to London and see Brian and Debbie. If you are interested in joining
me and Sue at one of Brian and Debbie's performances click on the email
link and send me an email.
12th July 2004
Interview: Part 6 can
be downloaded. After last week's large file a more manageable one this
this. In this extract Brian talks about some of the jobs he has done
to make ends meet.
Break FM: Community
radio station Break
FM, based in the Newnham area of London, will be broadcasting the
first of the Platform sessions in a "Live from the Stratford Tavern"
show on Friday 6th August from 11pm, with a repeat show on Sundays from
10.30pm. For those of us who don't live in the Newnham area we can hear
it first on Friday 30th July 2004 by logging onto the Break
FM web site (http://www.breakfm.com/)
and listen to it there. However, the show will be aired from 1am (British
Ricky Stevens: Ricky
is Debbie's father and had British hit in December 1961, with "I
Cried For You". I have added this to the timeline page. I plan
on adding this single and other Ricky tracks to the site soon.
27th June 2004
5 of the on-going interview is available. In this section Brian talks
about bands that he knew back in Edinburgh. This is a larger than normal
section, of 5.43Mb, therefore, the download will be longer than normal.
19th June 2004
Interview: Part 4 of
the interview is available now. Here Brian talks about his musical influences.
Debbie McKenna: As I
said I would do, Debbie's tracks are now available from the download
page. There are three tracks, Lover Boy and One Love plus Fax-U's (featuring
Debbie) I Who Have Nothing.
10th June 2004
Interview: Part 3 of
the interview is available now. Here Brian talks about writing a football
song for Hibernian, a Scottish club based in Edinburgh, and Colin Chisholm
being the singer.
Bilbo Tracks: As promised
last week, ALL the tracks from Bilbo Baggins and Bilbo are now uploaded
ready for you to download. They can all be found on the download
page. This fulfills my promise to David Muir of Edinburgh, and to you
all. Enjoy them.
Debbie McKenna: Next
week I'm aiming to add tracks by Debbie McKenna to the list of available
Platform: Last week
I attended the final Platform appearance by Stewart Irving. Brian was
there to support him perform three tracks, one of which was The Spell
by The Wish. Stewart will be returning back to South Africa soon where
he will be joining either his old band, Ballyhoo, or another band that
have also invited him to join. More news on this when I know more myself.
3rd June 2004
Interview: Another section
of the interview is now available for download, this time talking about
how Scotland and Ireland relate to England. For those of you who live
outside the UK what Brian says is very honest.
I have also added an interview The Wish did last year
for Wave 105.2 FM. It is a short interview but worth listening to. This
can be found on the Interviews
Bilbo Tracks: Next week
I'm hoping to be able to put all of the Bilbo Baggins and Bilbo tracks
on the Download
page. Yes, all of them, all 18 tracks. So keep watching.
New Pages: There
are a number of new pages now available, as promised, the Interviews
page, but also:
Facts - for anyone who just wants the skinny on Brian,
- where newspaper and magazine mentions either Brian or related items.
If you have any interesting articles that myself and other SpenceMusic
visitors may like to see then please contact me.
- News Archive - News from
previous years, back to when SpenceMusic started.
26th May 2004
In my excitement of telling you about the Brian Spence
interview I forgot to give you a link. I will place a new link in the
navigation bar, to the left, in the next couple of days, however, in
the meantime here is a link. Brian
25th May 2004
Hello again to everyone.
Spence Writing Again: Brian
tells me that he has been writing with a friend, Danny, he has made
through the London club circuit. Apparently, they have written about
an album's worth or songs. However, he did not say when or if they would
be recorded, so watch this space as I will follow up on this story.
The Wish Update: I also
spoke to Virginia (manager for The Wish) the other day. Stewart and
Virginia will be returning to South Africa soon. Apparently, Stewart
has already had a few of offers for him to join successful bands, one
of them from his old band Ballyhoo. What will become of the name "The
Wish" I'm not sure, but again I will try and find out.
Brian will be at Platform, with Stewart Irving of The
Wish, for Stewart's last performance in the UK for quite a while. This
will take place on Tuesday 1st June. For more details go to www.platformmusic.co.uk
I hope to be there too.
Web Site Update: Over
the coming weeks there will be some changes. These include be:
- Removal of Guest Map - this was
a rather flaky link to a map of the world where you could take where
visitors were from. I find that kind of stuff fascinating, you obviously
did not. So it's now gone.
- Also, gone is the "Fans of Brian" page. This
failed to grab your imaginations, So now it has gone.
Spence Interview: This is a half-hour interview, recorded in 1988
(Reputation time) and discusses a huge part of his life. The interview
has been broken down into 9 sections for you to either listen to or
download. I will release one section a week until it is all available.
- Lyric Pages: Naoki asked me, about
two years ago, for me to put the lyrics down on to paper for a couple
of tracks, especially Travellin' Man. Well I have now done this, plus
City of Shadows. You can find them off any link that references these
tracks. These are not the official lyrics, just what I wrote down
as I listened to the music. If they are wrong I rely on you to tell
me. I will try and get around the others when I can.
- New Friends: I continue to discover
more friends of Brian's. Recent additions include members of Expo
(one of Brian's groups before Bilbo Baggins) and Alex Arthur a boxer.
- Newspaper articles: I have found
a few (and I do mean only a few) articles about either Brian or things
related to him. These will be going on the site soon. If you have
any articles yourself, please share them with other fans. You can
do this by letting me know.
20th April 2004
Not a lot for me to report at the present time. Things
are very quite at the moment. However, I am sure that there will be
loads of frantic activity at some stage.
Don't forget, you can always leave messages for other
Brian Spence fans on the Guest Book.
14th March 2004
Spence Night: Sue and
I managed to go to London, last night, to see Brian and Debbie perform
at The Hammers. I was surprised to see Douglas and Kenny (two of Brian's
brothers) there plus Alison, Kenny's wife. Kenny and Alison had traveled
from Edinburgh to see the rest of the family (Stuart and Douglas both
live in London). We tried to have a chat above Brian and Debbie playing,
but it was difficult.
Part of Brian and Debbie's show is that they invite people
for the audience to sing, with Brian and Debbie accompanying (and helping
were necessary). This can be risky as, after a few drinks, almost everyone
thinks they are great singers. Such was last night. My sensitive ears
are still recovering from the acoustic assault they were given. ;-)
8th March 2004
Spence Night: Unfortunately
I did not make it to the Royal Duchess, due
to a cold (which I caught from Sue). I spoke to Brian about no being
able to go and he told me that he too was suffering from a cold. Sue
and I hope to see Brian and Debbie this coming weekend instead - all
of us cold free.
Bilbo mp3's: I have
been trying to record the Bilbo Baggins singles on to my computer. This
was as a result of a fan emailing me requesting some files. However,
I must have something wrong with the set up as I am recording the signal
but nothing plays back (yes, I have checked that the speakers are on
AND connected, thank you!). Once the tracks have been recorded, tested,
etc. I will attach them to the download page. As there are approximately
a CD's worth of music this is an interesting project. The tracks I will
be concentrating on first (by request) are Don't Blame It on Me, America
and Back Home. Just try and be patient - especially you David Muir,
who was the person requesting.
3rd March 2004
Platform Night: I
attended the Platform night at the Railway Tavern in Stratford, London,
which took place last night (and every first Tuesday of the month) and
I had a great time. I was going to do a review of the night here, but
I guess I'm too lazy for that. Instead I will say, if you are in the
area, you would be stupid to miss this event. Virginia and Stewart are
starting to get things really established there with some superb acts
appearing there. All the acts really are great (and I'm not just saying
that) and you might just hear the odd track or two that has been written
by Brian and Stewart.
I tip of the hat must go to a duo called Urban Dove,
who went to watch and listen to a friend (Lizzy Bing) and ended up performing;
due to one of the acts not turning up (no names here - okay, it was
Spence Night: Sue
and I hope to see Brian and Debbie on Friday night (5th March) at the
Royal Duchess, Commercial Road, London. If anyone else is going
please let me know so that I can say hello. At the moment Sue is getting
over a cold and I'm trying to fight one off.
14th February 2004
Brian Spence Advert: I
managed to get an old advert from one of the UK music papers this week.
The advert, shown below, is from 1986 upon the release of the album
"Brothers". You can see a larger image of the advert by clicking
on the picture, however, please be aware that it may take some time
Birthday Wishes: It
was Brian's 51st birthday on 7th February. I am sure you all join me
in wishing Brian a happy birthday. He believes that he still has plenty
of time to have a hit record. Good for him I say. Belief in yourself
is essential in the music business.
20th January 2004
Happy New Redesign: So
I'm not the only one to use the new year as an opportunity to revisit
their web site. Naoki, in Japan, has completely rebuilt his Brian Spence
web site giving it a great fresh new look. Why not pop over and have
Linking Up: Recently
I have been reading Web Designer articles about how to increase my presence
(sad isn't it?) and have come to the conclusion that I am doing everything
right (hey, I'm entitled to my opinion, okay?) except for having those
vital links from other web sites. So, if you have a web site and want
to have a link exchange (provided our sites are an appropriate match
- there is no way I'm linking to Manchester United's web site even though
it will get me loads of visitors) please contact me.
The Platform: Virginia
has sent me an update on the acts appearing at The Platform nights at
The Railway Tavern. Although the January date was canceled due to technical
problems the February and future dates will still go ahead, building
on the success of these nights prior to Brian and Debbie's separation
from The Wish.
5th January 2004
Happy New Year:
I hope you have now recovered from your celebration excesses and are
probably back at work, or what ever you do to get by in the world. Let
me add my voice to others and say "happy new year" to all
Sad News For The Wish:
Not a good start to the new year, but Brian and Debbie have left The
Wish. The split, which I believe was due to conflicting priorities and
is apparently amicable. Stewart, who retains the name, is reviewing
his plans for The Wish, but I understand, he is looking to edit the
vocals on the album so that his vocals are the lead ones and a contract
is thought to be waiting to be signed in South Africa.
Brian and Debbie are looking to go back into the studio
soon and start recording new material. If you want a copy of the Postcards
album with Brian and Debbie's vocals I suggest that you don't hang about
as stocks are limited and will not be available once the current supply
is all sold. As they say in the markets, "once it's gone, it's
gone". Hop on over to www.the-wish.com now for your copy - it is
sure to become a collect's item.
recent competition was won by John of Southampton, UK. He correctly
answered the question "Stewart Irving of The Wish was a member
of an award winning South African band. What was the band's name?"
with Ballyhoo. There were other correct answers, notably Luis, Tracy
and David - all from the UK - plus Naoki
from Japan. If you did not send in your answer, shame on you, as you
stood a good chance of winning with just 5 entries. However, I do have
another signed CD which I will use in a competition later in the year.
Looking for more news? Wondering where the old news
has gone? Why not visit the news archive for more news, but older?
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