Album of The Week – Stevie Palmer ‘We Become The Sunshine’ 3rd Oct 2020
Album of The Week at Celtic Music Radio – Stevie Palmer ‘We Become The Sunshine’ 3rd Oct 2020 – Listen in at 12pm when Stevie will be in conversation with Auntie Liz about his new album! The album was co-produced by Stevie, Ian McCalman and Dick Gaughan.
Guest Artists Karine Polwart (backing vocals), Kim Edgar (piano), Mary MacMaster (harp), Kristan Harvey (fiddle), Mr McFall’s Chamber (ensemble), Phil Cunningham (accordion), Steven Polwart (guitar), and Allan Knox (bass guitar).
Following an initial musical career as a drummer Stevie Palmer decided to turn his full attention to the art and craft of songwriting. This progression was always more than likely as Stevie grew up surrounded by his mother, folk singer/songwriter Eileen Penman’s music and musical loves as well as those of her partner and avid music collector Dougal Carnegie. These influences covered a wide and varied terrain from John Coltrane and Abdullah Ibrahim to Dick Gaughan, Michael Marra, Dougie Maclean,Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark as well as a few hundred others in between.
Before fully embracing these Folk, Jazz and Americana roots, initially rebelling against them in time honoured tradition, Stevie’s first musical love was black American music from the 1960’s largely via the Motown and Stax record labels, with artists like Otis Redding, Marvin Gaye and Smokey Robinson never being far from earshot. From early on in his teens to the present day the music of Paul Weller has also figured largely.
Stevie’s songwriting and performances are imbued with deep soulful sensitivity. While being instantly engaging, they are also capable of revealing new layers of emotional depth with each listen. The story so far has been one of high achievement for Stevie. After finding initial success in various local songwriting competitions he was selected as a National Burnsong winner in 2007. A song written during his involvement in this adventure called ‘Black Is The Sun‘ was soon after picked up by Ian Green at the Greentrax recording label and included on the critically acclaimed compilation album ‘Far, Far from Ypres‘. Black Is the Sun was picked as “the stand out track on the album” by the Scotland on Sunday newspaper.
Leading on from this success Stevie was offered a recording contract with Greentrax Recordings and given the chance to record his first full album of original songs. At times story driven, at times soothing and heartfelt, each song is tenderly crafted leaving melodies and lyrics that reach deep into the soul.
His work draws on a wide variety of influences ranging from fellow Scottish artists such as Dick Gaughan, Michael Marra and Karine Polwart to English singer/songwriters such as Nick Drake, Ray Davies and Paul Weller.
Following a lengthy fatherhood-focussed hiatus after Heartprint Shadow, Stevie returns with this passionately written and meticulously crafted album, featuring a wonderful selection of performance contributions from: Karine Polwart (backing vocals), Kim Edgar (piano), Mary MacMaster (harp), Kristan Harvey (fiddle), Mr McFall’s Chamber (ensemble), Phil Cunningham (accordion), Steven Polwart (guitar), and Allan Knox (bass guitar).
The album was co-produced by Stevie, Ian McCalman and Dick Gaughan, supported by Creative Scotland and recorded at Ian’s Kevock Studio. Dick Gaughan is a huge admirer of Stevie’s work and volunteered to be involved in the recording of the album. It was mastered in late February 2020 by Peter Haigh of Pier House Studios.
Release was delayed due to the coronavirus lockdown, which has given several people the opportunity to listen to the album. All, including Greentrax MD Ian Green, are of the opinion that the album goes beyond the usual folk genre and is likely to be enjoyed by all lovers of good music generally. The arrangements are superb, giving a wide variety of sounds to the individual tracks.
- Before The Flame Goes Cold
- Going, Going, Gone
- Fly Away With You
- The Winter and Me
- James Watt’s Perfect Engine
- We Become The Sunshine
- All Your Tomorrows
- Gently Into The Night
- Saddest Month
- God Gave Me These Hands
- Rise Up Singing
- Merry Company