The Winter Newsletter Sorta
Hello Listeners Everywhere
First....that gigging news in full.
There are only two shows between now and end of the year. One is at Poetry
Wivenhoe Thursday 12 December.It's at the British Legion Hall, The Quay/
Wivenhoe.Doors Open 7. 30. Entry is £5 The other is the annual Christmas
with Johnny and Martin gigJohn Cooper Clarke and Martin the Newell Young
Married Luke Wright and Brave Ross Sutherland It's all going on at Colchester
Arts Centre Sat 21st December. Booking is advisable for this event. www.colchesterartscentre.com
or why not ring 01206-500900 and make miaowing noises down the phone at
Health News. Those of you who can read will know that I've had
bit of a medical year of it in 2013.. My general health, is pretty good
now and my energy is back to pre-illness heights. That's the good news.
Alas my eye operation for a detached retina, after a lot of pain, delay
and general NHS admin kerfuffle was not a success.
This gives a me a choice of another op, with unpredictable results, impaired
sight, or actual loss of sight in my left eye. Or I can walk away from
it all. I have until late
January next year to make a decision whether to stick or twist. I may
New Album News.
Because of all the soap opera mentioned above, which has taken up or ineterfered
with at least 9 months of my life, new material has been painfully slow
in developing.The good news is that I do have a stack of new ideas. The
bad news is that I simply haven't been able to get down and do them. I
do actually have half a dozen tracks, butI'm going to have to get stuck
in early next year now.
Old Album News.
Captured Tracks of Brooklyn N.Y. Will next spring release the final part
of the Cleaners from Venus trilogy. There will be all sorts of goodies,
notes and either unreleased or scantly released tracks. There'll also
be a remastered, producer's cut of My Back Wages. More news on this as
Goodbye incidentally to Rian Fossett, the lady who persuaded me of the
wisdom of working with this company. I've never looked back. Rian is taking
a sabbatical, she tells me. Stay in touch Rian!
Burger Records of California are, so far as I know, still selling all
sorts of our stuff on cassette and are flourishing. I haven't heard from
them for a while though, so I have no further info to recount. Call in
Sean, we miss you. Ray Gianchetti of Kool Kat is still selling alll newer
Cleaners from Venus stuff on CD as well as other curiosities. Why not
check him out e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Book The latest book The Wife of '55 my first collection of
new verses for five years, is out on Nasty Little Press and is, I am told,
doing very well.
Brian the Lion 10 This is kids' stuff for adults too. We thought we'd
try you out on a download
for Christmas. It's a 58 minute sonic cartoon fit for 6 years upwards.
Get it now free. There'll be a small charge after New Year. If we get
the take up, we may be going semi commercial with it next year. (See blog
entry Brian the Lion) Watch this space.
Round up ( yee haaa!)
This has been one of my most challenging years. The battle's not quite
over yet...but much of it is. I'd just like to wish all of you a merry
Christmas and a preposterous new year. I'm looking forward to lots of
recording next year. Stay with it, cats.
Martin was recently featured in a radio show. He gave
an interesting hour long interview. You
can hear it here
Newell's most mature book of verse;
a series of love-letters to England and his childhood.
Pictured from this year's Golden Afternoon.
The Late Summer Newellsbetter!
Hello, hello and hello. It's been a long time. I can only apologise for
what has been a thoroughly medical summer for me. I've seen more doctors,
surgeons, nurses and waiting rooms,
this past four months than in the preceding 40 years. We think it's tailing
off now, so, fingers crossed and on with the show.
After a summer of few gigs, I am still doing...
And don't forget the book signing at the Wivenbook Hoe Shop
on Fri 27th September. Don't go on 20th because I won't be there. Not
that I ever said I would in the first place. Just keeping you on your
The Golden Afternoon 2013 (yaay!) This will
happen on Sunday 22nd September at Colchester Arts Centre. My very
very special guest is the lovely Lorraine Bowen to whom I'm turning over
a fair chunk of the show. She's an old friend of mine, a brilliant songwriter
a funny woman and a bloody good piano player. If you've never seen her
before, the best description of her is a 'post-modern Joyce Grenfell'.
Look her up on that Tube if you don't believe me.
I'll be doing a selection of my songs that day, probably a bit of spoken
word and we'll also be launching my first poetry book in five (count 'em)
years. It's called The Wife of '55 and is published by Nasty Little
Press, which is Young Luke Wright's now well established publishing venture.
Book tickets from www.colchesterartscentre.com or why not ring 01206-500900
and make slusping noises down the phone at them.
On Sunday October 13th there's a gig for Wivenhoe Words
Festival. It's me and John Cooper Clarke at
the William Loveless Hall in Wivenhoe - a full on spoken word evening
show. John and I have never performed at Wivenhoe on the same bill before.
It's gonna be grrrreaat! as Tony the Tiger probably said... or was it
Ethel Merman? There are still a few tickets left ...if you ring Wivenhoe
Bookshop on 01206-87845 or you can e-mail email@example.com
I'm keeping gigs to the minimum at the moment, because
they tell me that technically I'm still convalescing, after a spot of
blindness in August and a touch of death in May.
Records... You'll no doubt be rendered incontinent with rapture to learn
that I'm now several tracks into this new album o' mine...which may well,
if no lawyers intervene, be called Rubber Maid.
All those beautifully packaged Captured Tracks boxed Cleaners sets are
doing well. There's a third set coming ut next spring. One or two major
surprises there. Oh and earlier this year, before illness struck I remastered
and digitised a producer's cut of The Stray Trolleys! This may well surface
with Captured Tracks too, eventually.
Meanwhile, big ups for Ray Gianchetti at Koolkat of Noo Joizey who's still
supplying Cleaners, Brotherhood of Lizards and more on CD. And lastly
but not beastly, Sean at Burger Records in Californ-i-ay who's selling
everything on cassette (yes, really) as well as last year's The Late District.
Oh and guess what? Richard Shelton,jazz singer for whom I penned
half an album a few years ago, is living in L.A and contacted me to tell
me that he's going into Capitol Records Studio B (that's where Frank Sinatra
used to record) He's doing a song of mine called Over Like the Roses.
I heard the early string arrangements and it sounds bloody amazing.
Media Stuff Over at the BBC, there's been Cleaners airplay and mentions
on Steve Lamacq's shows this summer and honour-a-bull mentions from Marc
Riley (it says here). Online...there's a feature due soon from Aug Stone
at The Quietus. There's also an interview upcoming and an online radio
show with me as guest DJ from the most unusual and arty Fixe Mag. Check
them out, they're defiantly different.
So for the time being, it's goodbye from
me and I'll try not to get ill again, okay.
Right...onward and sideways....
Humdinger of a Spring Newsletter
It's been a long drawn out old winter here in the UK. Don't
know what it's been like everywhere else, but there were days over here,
back in late March where we felt lucky if we got to even the dizzy heights
of 6 centigrade. However, I said there'd be a newsletter and here she
MUSIC DEPARTMENT Spotlight
on Burger Records...Yung Sean Bohrman tells me that with a new distro
deal, they're going great guns at present. I'll let Sean fill you in,
in his own enthusiastic way.
THE BROTHERHOOD OF LIZARDS - LIZARDLAND
THE BROTHERHOOD OF LIZARDS - S/T
THE CLEANERS FROM VENUS - ENGLISH ELECTRIC
THE CLEANERS FROM VENUS - THE LATE DISTRICT is up for sale digitally at
all the places below!!!
YOUR ALBUM IS AVAILABLE DIGITALLY AT...7digital,
BlackBerry Messenger Service
iTunes Digital Booklet Spec Sheet
iTunes Video Spec Sheet
Mix & Burn
Sonys Music Unlimited
VEVO Spec Sheet
Nuff said, already?
Captured Tracks of Brooklyn N.Y. meanwhile, will release the second phase
of Cleaners from Venus originals on May 15th. A casual search of their
site will give you some idea of the incredible amount of work the boys
and girls there have put in. There will be copious sleeve notes, generous
dollops of extra tracks and loads of other stuff. It really is a terrific
package. Be quite excited about this now, won't you?
Ray at Koolkatmusik in Noo Joisey is still there serving up the CDS of
the newer stuff and the Brotherhood. All solo stuff is still being done
by Cherry Red in Englandshire including The Greatest Living Englishman
and The Off White Album.
Two cheers for Orchestral Manoeuvres in the
Dark, incidentally, for releasing their new album English Electric.
I gather their people were notified that the Cleaners had used the name
3 years ago, but decided that this fact wasn't important enough for them
to change their own title. (Paul says... To be fair,
they were talking about their English Electric back in 2011).
Now, me? Before I go using a title, especially in these days of the World
Wide Wibble, I generally find that a quick Google of album titles, will
tell me whether anyone else has got there first. Never mind, hey. Good
luck, anyway, chaps. I bear you no malice.
EXTRAS! Young and
suave Devon Williams did two days filming over here on Planet Newell recently.
Work went very well. You may find a rather good little Cleaners mini film
surfacing in the near future. There's more. The mini film may well be
part (eventually) of a much bigger film about the Cleaners from Venus
and the man who they're all calling the new Sir Nartin Mule.
GIGS and LIVE DEPARTMENT
Because of ongoing, but rapidly being-solved, health problems ( see MEDICAL
DEPARTMENT) I have been beating off offers of gigs like you wouldn't believe.
So firstly, some of the stuff which I'm not doing. I'm not doing the Bowiefest
at Latitude, which I was asked to do by my mate Tom at the ICA. He asked
whether I would sing with the yet-to-be-named all star Bowie band.
I rather regretfully turned it down. I didn't feel quite up to that one.
Also, sorry to my friends in the US. I really did waver for a while about
coming there later this year, but again, thought that the venture might
do me more harm than good. They even God bless 'em offered
to bring me out on a boat, I kid you not. Never...though, say 'never'.
It gets harder to say no each time, but I am prey to a lot of stress,
whenever travel rears its pointy old head.
For those of you who've heard that I'm doing the London Palladium, with
Johhny Clarke, Luke Wright and Phill Jupitus, (intake of breath) it's
true, that it's been offered...I'm even on some of the early promo literature.
But..I don't know if I'm doing it yet, or not. So don't book quite yet.
Finally, sorry to my old friends in Germany for the same reasons.
Gigs which I am doing are Latitude Fri 19th July...3.30 t0 3.50pm...spoken
word in the Poetry Arena, I was asked by (and I was really touched by
this) Tania at Latitude herself. She even gave me an afternoon slot. How
could I refuse?
Similarly, I'm at Ipswich Waterstones Bookshop in the Buttermarket, (The
Mighty Plod's old stomping ground) on Sunday 5th May between 3 and 4 p.m.
Reading and talking. On Saturday 25th May I'm at the Hythe, Colchester,
doing a promotion of the Hythe itself. I'm also doing the Harwich Festival
at the Alma on Weds 26th June. Note that these are all spoken word or
poetry gigs. I'm staying away from music gigs at present apart from playing
the piano and singing four self-written 'Victorian'
songs of a smutty nature, for my friends at the I Hear Voices Theatre
The productions four separate episodes of Lady Breakneck, will be staged
at Slackspace Colchester on Saturday 20th April and Saturday 27th April
between 6p.m. and 8.p.m. Both gigs will be recorded for podcast in early
Huge thanks to all the medical professionals who've been running tests
on me this past few months. They include doctors GPs and surgeons
opthalmic people of all types, nurses and others at several different
clinics and hospitals. It is thanks to them
that I now know what I haven't got. If anyone ever tells you the NHS isn't
working, I'm here to tell you that it blimming well, is. So there.
It's not quite over yet but it nearly is, I think. It's now down to an
issue with the eyesight in one eye. But I only have two eyes in total
so, I've been taking it a bit slower in the meantime,while they've been
conducting more tests. Abnormal service will be resumed as soon as is
probable. It's looking better everyday. Through one of my eyes at least).
been working on new songs and have started new recordings. Not only that
but the newly rebuilt old Cleaners from Venus 1961 Hofner V3 is working
better than it ever has. Good luck to Steve Dix, who's back in contact
after a bit of an absence and to Paul's eldest, 13 year old Lewis, who's
just been commended for his comic book skills.
Back to you all very soon.
1) Me, J.C. C and Jeanette at my birthday bash 2) Lady
3) Hilary Lazell's illustration commemorating 150 years of Wivenhoe Railway
Late Winterblues Letter
hellos to everyone and huge pology-apps for the scantness of action on
this site of late. Paul, Steve and I have, as you may have surmised, all
been going through our various mills, ills and wills. However, as we begin
to haul ourselves gradually, out of what seems to be a fairly long winter,
it looks like the new year is shaping up quite lively.
WARES: I don't think that the Cleaners from Venus and my solo stuff
has ever been as widely available as it is at present and it's about to
become even more so.
Optic Nerve through Picadilly Records, have just released a very limited
viny edition LP
(500 copies) of Living With Victoria Grey The Very Best of the
Cleaners from Venus (the vinyl years, that is). Previously only available
as a CD from Cherry Red, this is 18 tracks of the best of the mid period
studio stuff including the slow version of Illya Kuryakin Looked At Me
. This is a somewhat de-luxe edition, I'm told. I am also currently in
early talks with Ian Allcock at Optic Nerve, to bring out( wait for it)
a vinyl edition of The Late District.
I was so fired up about The Late District sessions, by the way, that in
spring I intend to begin work a companion volume with a working title
of The Pique District. Ha haaa
Meanwhile...Over in Brooklyn at Captured Tracks records, the release of
the second 3 volumes of the cassette years looms ever closer, we're talking
only a few weeks now...mid March April. On it, I warrant you, are
tracks from that time three decades ago which many will never have heard
before. I ain't talking broken biscuits here, but genuine buried treasure.
In Californ I. A. The Burger Boys at Burger Records now have Lizardland,
The Late District and
English Electric all available as cassettes and soon, I hear, on download.
Please don't forget Ray at Koolkat in New Jersey, who's got all the stuff
on CD, like English Electric,The Stopping Train, The Late District and
Lizardland which is not covered by the aformentioned labels. He's waiting
for your calls!
Probably nice to mention that good old Cherry Red Records are still vending
most of my solo albums on CD and downloads from the period 1999 to 2007.
Don't forget, that you can still order downloads from our wn online shoppe.
There's a link somewhere nearby, I think.
That pretty much covers everything I've ever done, now, doesn't it? So
I'll shut up and get on with some new stuff, shall I?
AND LITRITCHUR MATTURS: I continue my role as Poet in Res for the
Sunday Express and Essex columnist at large for the East Anglian Daily
Times. Young Luke Wright and his Nasty Little Press will be publishing
my next poetry collection, which we haven't finalised a title for yet,
but which I've started making selections for. I haven't had a new collection
of poems out for what..4 or 5 years? So there's a lot to choose from.
Anyway that will be coming out at some point this year, we think.
Yep! Pencils and papers ready?
The Soundhouse Crouch Street, Colchester. Music. Solo spot Guitar
and piano songs probably. Think I'm first on. It's what I arksed for.
February, Norwich Arts Centre.
(a sort of centre for the arts in Norwich) Poetry / Spoken Word.
8th March The Lock Tearoom, Basin Rd / Heybridge / Maldon Essex. This
my poetry gig for the Essex
Book Festival. I love doing tea rooms and libraries. It's the age
Things are ticking over on Planet Newell here. I'm told that I 'rather
overdid it' last year, so I'm trying to work in a calmer sort of fashion
for the time being. The place is gradually waking up, however. Steve's
running over the office carpet with the J Edgar and Paul's put the kettle
on and is playing a bit of Jobim, while we all study the electricty bill.
Wish us all well. In the meantime we'll be pottering around the site doing
this and yes, some of that. Eagle-eyed readers may notice that I've been
posting various items up on the blog space. Shall I carry on? Then, I
hope that spring will soon come mincing into the fields and the message
board will be buzzing with theories and offers.
1) Sir Nartin (pictured recently)
3) A recent gig in Wivenhoe
2) Newell's This Year's Roses No 1 Jean Marsh
MARtin the Newell