My Good Man William - The story of “The Ark” launch
So after months and months of toil and hard work, we finally launched “The Ark” EP by My Good Man William!
Everything was put together by us (with a little help from our friends); from recording at the incredible State of the Ark Studios (home to Emeli Sande, Razorlight, Snow Patrol etc - thanks Dan!):
To producing with POM & Manon Grandjean (London Grammar, Beady Eye, Scouting for Girls):
The awesome Philippe Nash designed our artwork and flyers for us:
And then we started booking the tour. We actually ended up playing a few extra shows on top of this:
We booked a few of our own shows and everything in between, from Venue to Soundman to Support Acts to Backline to Ticket Sales to Marketing to Front Of House to Guestlist to Stage Design to Promotion; you name it, we did it, and it killed us!
We sorted radio interviews and live sessions:
…and met some nice faces along the way:
Watched ticket sales gradually climb:
By this point we needed a break. A break for some scrabble:
But still couldn’t leave the promotion alone:
Uploaded videos on tubes:
As it was bonfire night we made a cover video, and got on yet more promotion with some sparklers. I’m not sure whether people had got the jist that we were launching on 22nd November by this point…
After months of tireless work and with only a couple of weeks till the launch, we thought it was probably about time to start actually playing and rehearsing our music. Particular focus was on getting some incredible 4 part harmonies down. This is still new for me personally, so there was a lot of work to do there.
and I got to really look into my sounds and create something fresh and interesting, using shakers and other percussion, messing with my beautiful Dream cymbals, beer bottles, different tunings etc etc:
LAUNCH DAY HAD ARRIVED!!! With incredible amounts of stress, sleepless nights and still no pressed CD’s to speak of. But just as we were beginning to lose hope…….:
Finally, all our work was right there. We were about to play over a week of shows - all extremely well attended, most packed out - with our product in our hands, and I can’t believe how proud we all felt. We’ve not got proper photo’s up yet, but here’s a few to whet your appetite.
The White Horse Richmond:
(thanks to Mark Grace for this photograph)
And the Troubadour (with a ridiculously well deserved chill-out time beforehand to enjoy some Monopoly Deal, some decent food, wine, conversation and fellowship!):
This process of “The Ark” has our entire hearts embedded in it. It turned me from a drummer into something else entirely. Will’s lyrics and melodies are soaring and delightful. Westy’s guitar parts have such emotion and feel such as I rarely have the pleasure of hearing. Simon Horn’s (on the recording) bass parts make my drumming sound good because he’s so on it, and Phil Martin on the live shows has put his own stamp on it in an amazing way too. My drumming is my drumming, be it bad, good, sloppy, tight, imperfect, perfect; it is me, and no one else can play my parts the way intend them. This EP is not about me and my playing though. I just play for the songs.
Singing 4-part harmonies live has been an amazing challenge, but my voice is improving all the time, and I’m excited for the future.
So get a copy of it. Come to a show. Say hi.
As well as our physical CD copies of The Ark which we’d love for you to hear, we are now on iTunes. So please head there, buy a copy, leave a rating and a comment, and support unsigned music. We mean every word and note on this record, and we hope you will enjoy it.
Thanks to my brilliant endorsers, SJC Drums and Dream Cymbals for providing me with the best sounding gear that inspires how I play, and Phi - named after the Golden Ratio which she was built around - still gets rave comments at every gig. I also use Evans Drumheads; this combination always make me sound better than I am! And my kit would be ruined without my spanking Hardcase Drum cases.
Thanks to LJ Ayrten, Lara Smiles, Philippe Nash, Andy Stedman, Daniel Burke, Sam Horton, Will Hearne and Harry Baker for supporting us at our shows and providing brilliant music. You made the nights complete! And to Tony Bowen!
Thanks to Philippe Nash for all his hard work on our artwork, you’re a legend. Thanks to Mark Grace, Tom Jackson and Bob&Betty for filming and taking photographs. To Dale at CD Duplication for our CD Pressing. To POM and Manon Grandjean for your ears and skills in the studio. To Dan Britten for your hospitality and generosity.
A massive massive thank you to Ru Jackson for being incredibly supportive and hospitable, and for contributing massively to making this happen for us.
Thank you to everyone who supported us on our original Kickstarter project. To everyone who came along, said nice things and encouraged us, and to everyone who has helped along the way.
And finally thank you to our father. WIthout your wisdom and guidance this wouldn’t have even started. And to the My Good Man William boys: Will Jackson, Ben Westaway, Phil Martin and myself. Killer friends, killer musicians, killer brothers! It’s been a ride. The future should be a lot of fun :)
Josh - MGMW