By Ginger | April 20, 2000
The album is finished. Finished as in done, dusted and rarin’ to rock. Six months of intense rehearsing, recording and mixing and suddenly it’s over. The sadness I had anticipated didn’t arrive as planned. The final day was a blast of activity that negated any emotional involvement. Champagne was uncorked and congratulations were passed around, but in a strangely muted workmanlike manner that was completely out of character with the sessions.
Ending things always brings with it a numbing sensation that signifies the beginning of something else. The day you leave your holiday, job or relationship is the day you get the overwhelming urge to taste the unknown and savour its strange delights. The new beginning. New beginnings are what it’s all about. All it’s all about. When nervous apprehension makes way for confident new steps. This is the business they call music.
I’ve never been too good with goodbyes and this was no exception. Roger Tebbitt, the engineer, has become such a familiar face in my day to day workings that to say I’m not gonna miss him would be blasphemous. And Tim Smith, producer and legend, has become family. I’ve fallen in love with Tim. He is just about the greatest living musician, and to be able to place him in the ever-growing list of ‘people I’d like to work with and have’ is both an honour and a life-enhancing experience. And now I’m alone again. Only for a short time, until the next stage of world domination commences, but enough to feel confused and elated at the same time.
The new chapter will see me putting together the band that will make this idea flesh. The musicians are starting to show up, and auditioning is taking the shape of meeting people recommended by fellow musicians that I have particular respect for. The idea of sitting in a room full of hundreds of hopefuls depresses me beyond endurance. Been there, as they say, and fucking well done it. Never again. Not in this lifetime. No way. Putting a group together that does not mirror any of the inherent flaws that marred the progress of The Wildhearts is not an easy task. But then neither is rehearsing for an album that is months away from release.
The patience that one must endure in such matters is easily the hardest thing about this business. The temptation to say “that’ll do” and suffer from reckless ambition over suss is incredibly hard to fight. Even though one knows that careful thought and planning will always win out in the end, it’s so tempting to just go with the first idea and take a risk that it’ll all be OK.
After months of painstaking work, finding the band to play this shit live is by far the most crucial task in making this dream a reality. Time passes so slowly at points like these that one can be forgiven for thinking that nothing is happening. There are names, management companies, record companies and fantastic ideas that cannot be mentioned until legally possible… so, no news to report there I’m afraid. You’ve been very patient so far. I’m desperate to spill the beans, but have to stay focused on what really needs to be done. And this is where I came in.
The album is finished (more news on that in the news section – go see) and it sounds absolutely amazing. And I want you to hear it more than anything in the world. But to do this properly means that I have to do things properly. I will stand back and suffer the mind-bending pains of patience and discipline. And you, my loyal friends, will have to do the same. Life is a bit like that I’m afraid. But ponder this…
I’m going to be a father in September.
Thought that would shock you!