On 'Wolcum Yole'

For me, making music has increasingly been about finding and sustaining a 'feeling' in a way that I cannot and would not care to analyze. Whether playing Jazz, composing or interpreting other people's music.

I have never really had a serious 'voice'. I am rarely serious. Somewhere I held the private notion that given time, the combination of seemingly disparate things might yield something greater than the sum of its parts. Perhaps its my Canadian half, perhaps it might also have been a private act of rebellion; If there was a genteel way of saying 'to hell with it', then here it is...

To those how know me, 'Wolcum Yole', might appear to be radical departure. After all, there is no improvisation, (there was no place that seemed right for it) and my piano playing is very much restricted in lieu of a plethora of different instruments; guitars, melodica, winds, recorders, percussion, vocals, synthesizers old and new (everything I could find lying around my workspace). However, I'd like to think that somewhere along the line, I've managed to reconnect with the magic of the earliest music we listened to as kids. This was long before I discovered Jazz, and was still a time when an family might spend an evening listening to LPs as readily as watching TV; In addition to Elton John & the Beach Boys I distinctly remember album-length pieces regularly played at this time: Tubular Bells, Ommadawn... The Dark Side of the Moon...

As the years passed I felt desperately malnourished for a 'new' music that exuded a certain kind of connection. Perhaps I was just stumbling into the wrong avenues, but increasingly, I became aware that whilst I was still enjoying a great deal of music - the attraction was only superficial & deep down I couldn't really personally identify with the underlying spirit. I was also becoming aware, on my part, of a subconscious desire for intellectual 'approval' that needed to be tempered for the sake of my own honesty. For this reason, (long before 'social distancing' became a thing), I discovered not only that I enjoy working in the studio alone, but also enjoy a certain degree of detachment from news, opinions and trends. For the longest time, the music that became 'Wolcum Yole' was a private pursuit that I had limited notion of releasing.

The opening melody has a certain kind of welcoming quality found in folk music that I hope will draw the listener in, but is periodically punctuated by abrupt, nebulous minor chords in the winds and voices that represent the awe and astonishment of a solitary wanderer gazing down upon an endless vista. Together these are 'icons' that return in different guises throughout the duration of the piece. In retrospect, maybe theres a conflict going on between solitude and the desire to reach out that is at the heart of all of us all.

... but I acknowledge that these kinds of musical-pictorial associations vary wildly between listeners.

With all that in mind, at last, welcome...

Posted: Oct. 5, 2020, 5:16 a.m.

Tags: composition influences releases