Hi, this is your online habit Alex Day telling you of some news:
I’m obliged to email you at least every three months otherwise my email provider considers this mailing list ‘inactive’ and I have to make you all re-sign up. I hope you’re doing well and that you managed to hear back about that thing you’re waiting for. I’m sure it’ll all work out.
My new album’s coming along, I should have finished songs in my cloud in about a week, and then I’ll start filming music videos and raising money to pay for CDs to sell to you (if you’re interested; or I’ll just sell them digitally, or you can stream them through your personal free-music service of choice and I’ll get a job in Tesco because I went broke making my album).
That’s a point actually; would you guys be interested in a physical copy of my last album, Nowhere Left To Hide? Reply to this and let me know your opinions.
Best wishes and kind thoughts
It’s easy in this overshared world of ours to think that success has to be obvious and visible and glamourous. My success is comparatively smaller, but no less significant.
I grew up playing trading card games – Pokémon, Yu-Gi-Oh, Cardcaptors, Digimon, the short-lived Harry Potter TCG, others I seem to have forgotten (I didn’t get into Magic until much later).
Five years ago today, my cousin and I brought our card game Sopio to the market – initially through our YouTube audience, later through card game and hobby conventions, trade fairs, card/hobby shops and live tournaments across the country. We’ve dealt with major companies like Firebox and Forbidden Planet, been nominated for nationally-recognised card game awards, released seven decks and sold at least 30,000 of them worldwide (I haven’t asked Danny for the updated number).
If you’ve been a part of that in any small way – either through buying, playing or even just sitting through one of my stupid videos rambling on about this game we made and love – thank you so much :)
Right through this weekend, if you want to buy either our first ever Sopio deck (the easiest way in for people new to card games) or our newest deck (with the best and funniest puns), we’re offering them for £5 here:
Thanks for reading! Much love
When I was recording Nowhere Left To Hide, I started to feel my production was getting a bit stagnant. Scared Like Me, Exploring Tomorrow, Make It Rain and Beyond You are solid tracks but they’re very safe. I found myself getting into the same habits when making production choices.
I felt I wasn’t pushing myself enough and didn’t wanna record more of the same.
Then I went to Edinburgh with Tom Law and he took me to a jazz show (because he knows how to treat me right), and I was amazed four musicians could play a two-hour set using just a piano, saxophone, double bass and vocals and make the songs so varied and dynamic.
Thus, I decided it would be an interesting challenge to record an album with 100% real instruments – nothing electronic.
Epigrams and Interludes was mainly influenced by Lady Gaga, and Nowhere Left To Hide was influenced by Les Miserables; in the last twelve months I’ve been hugely influened by Ed Sheeran, who blew up with his album ‘X’ (which is great), and I was also inspired hearing Taylor Swift share her goal for ’1989′ to have a cohesive sound – to feel like an album, not just a collection of songs (which is something I’ve not done since Parrot Stories really).
So my first new track, Breathe Again, has only four instruments (in the spirit of that jazz show) but the total count for the album so far includes electric and acoustic guitar, piano, bass, drums, harmonica, harp, violin and saxophone.
I’ve only recorded four songs so far and it’s been incredibly collaborative. I usually work alone, playing every note myself (usually into MIDI keyboards) but for this, the violin will be played by a guy called Richard, the sax by a guy called Nathan, I have backing vocals done by a girl called Liliana, harp played by a girl called Scarlett, and even the album artwork will be designed by a girl called Robyn. Recording is taking place in London, Bristol and California. Again, it’s very different to how I do things normally and that’s exactly what I needed.
The name of the album is Split Infinities (I’ll explain why another time). Here’s the track list (not in order yet):
All We Have Is Now
You Are Loved
More To Life
Where Is My Friend?
Can’t Get Enough
Learning How To Love
If I write anything great between now and then, it might change. Also, I put ‘Everything’ in those quotes cos I’m not super happy with that title but haven’t found a better one.
So that’s how things are going :) Looking to have the whole thing recorded by summer and the album promo beginning around October with lots of music videos!
Thanks for indulging me in reading this, you’re very kind. If you want some fantastic musicians to listen to, google Natalie Shay, Kate McGill, George Reece and Charlotte Campbell, they’re all brilliant, you won’t regret it.
Much love xx
“It’s better,” Greg Holden said, “to make your mistakes than to live without knowing; it’s better to fall on your face than to stay on your feet – as long as you try”.
Greg Holden is a musician. He and I worked together in the Apple Store on Regent Street in 2008, back when I had about ten thousand subscribers and he had four. Not four thousand; just four. Four people.
I watched his stuff and loved it, especially his song The Art Of Falling, the chorus of which is quoted above. So I made a video called ‘Greg Holden’ and told everyone to subscribe to him and he got a thousand subscribers in less than a day and now he’s living in New York and got signed to Warner Music.
(There’s obviously a much larger story in-between ‘Alex Day made a video’ and ‘got signed to Warner Music’, but I’m not the man to tell it. Still, at least I ended up getting a record deal for SOMEONE, eh.)
I stopped making YouTube videos a few months ago because I felt frustrated that I didn’t command the sway I once had. In actuality, of course, I just wasn’t trying hard enough. One-take shaky-cam videos filmed in windy parks aren’t the best way to build back a following, this just in.
So, in the spirit of failing being better if you try, I’m kickstarting my YouTube channel and you can learn more about that here.
In music news, I’ve recorded FIVE NEW SONGS toward a new album and they’re coming along. Three of the songs have live harp on them and two of the songs were written in Plum Village, if that gives you an idea of the sound :) Right now I would describe it as ‘Complicated Days: The Album’. Or maybe ‘Hearts: The Album’. Either way, if those words mean anything to you, they should mean you’re excited. I hope, anyway. I’ve reached the end.
I’m gonna keep this brief:
I really, really hope you like this :)
This was a hard album to make. In a lot of ways, it was an album I needed to make. It’s quite raw and makes me feel a bit exposed. But I love it and I’m very proud to have it and to share it. I think parts of it are my best work and overall it’s probably the most cohesive release I’ve ever put out.
The album costs £5 digital download, or it’ll be out tomorrow on YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Apple Music and all those other places. As always, you get it a day early for being kind enough to read this.
I’m not selling a physical CD for this but I am selling a physical USB card with the album on, limited edition (about a hundred or so) – get that here.
I need you guys with me tomorrow: if you like the album, please share it with whoever you can.
And feel free to email me and tell me what you think of it – just reply to this post if you’re getting this on email. I’ll read every one.
Now the work begins fresh. Time to record even newer stuff!
(PS I got snapchat if you want – thatalexday)